We live in a world of great convenience today. Instant downloads, lunch in 7 minutes or less (thank you Macaroni Grill), same-day cross-country shipping…you get the picture. But what can a business expect if they want to work with a video production company in Orlando? How long will it take to produce a video?
Realistically it depends on the project. There are many variables at hand. It depends on a company’s needs, expectations, budget, etc. Do they need a lot of visual effects? Are there actors involved? Do they need a company spokesperson? Is there travel involved? A project that has these types of requirements can take upwards of 8 weeks to produce.
But a simple, basic 2-3 minute business video can be produced a great deal faster. In order to understand the needed time, let’s break the process down to three phases.
1. Pre-Production. We’re essentially talking about planning the video. We’re creating a blueprint of sorts. We have to know exactly what you want and in a lot of cases some companies need help determining that. So there’s a bit of a discovery stage where a production company needs to ask a lot of questions. Builders don’t just a build a house; video producers don’t just start shooting. We develop a message and figure out how that message is going to be delivered. Are we shooting interviews? Are we just talking to one company representative on camera? Will we need a narrator? The more we narrow down our focus and create a clear objective the faster the process will be.
Some production companies may talk about needing a storyboard but that isn’t always the case. A storyboard can be very useful in a more complex production but are rarely needed in projects that may have a smaller budget or tighter deadline. A realistic time frame for planning the shoot is approximately 1-2 weeks, longer if we are writing a script. You might be asking yourself…does that mean we’ll be billed for that amount of time? No. Once we’re contacted about a project and have a signed proposal/agreement we’ll carve out a mutually convenient schedule that takes into account your availability as well as ours. We’re essentially allowing ourselves a 1-2 week window to take care of details that need to be addressed before shooting. That might be 2 hours a day for two or three days or the whole week (depending on complexity) as we are working on other projects simultaneously. During that time we might be coordinating our crew, determining production roles, as well as preparing interview questions in the event we’re conducting interviews. We may want to schedule a site survey at your office and decide where we’ll be shooting. Each project is different…in some cases there may be as little as a few hours of pre-production in others multiple days of actual time may be needed.
2. Production. Production can be the most expensive stage in the cycle because of crew and equipment. The day of the shoot has arrived. So how much time will we need? More often than not the average small business video can be shot in 1-2 days. Sometimes as little as a half-day is needed. It depends on the amount of content we’re trying to capture. If we are shooting multiple interviews, the factor that comes into play here is locations. Are the locations all in the same vicinity? Are we shooting b-roll too? Is everyone that we’re trying to tape (say for example four individuals) available on the same day? The biggest factor in cost efficiency is coordination. Each time we have to come out to your office is an additional day of crew and equipment cost. Production companies don’t charge by the hour when it comes to production because we generally deal with a minimum of a few hours setting up lights, conducting interviews, striking the equipment, loading the gear back up etc. Half-days are usually the entry point for video production.
3. Post-Production. All of our planning and shooting comes to life during editing. Post can sometimes be done in one day, but more often than not it’s at least two days. The footage that we’ve shot needs to be ingested into our computer and we can then start to assemble the edit. There’s time spent on graphic design, searching for the appropriate royalty free music that will match the appropriate tone and emotion of the video, as well as voice-overs that may need to be recorded for narration. Once the video is complete we’ll export an Mpeg4 file for a client’s review.
Taking these stages into account it’s possible to have a completed video within three weeks. A big factor in turnaround time is the level of communication between the client and a production company. How fast does each respond to their respective requests? Having a firm understanding in place at the beginning of the project that deadlines are only met when each party is held responsible makes the process a smooth one. Our Orlando video production company has successfully completed projects within 8 days of being first contacted. While that’s not a typical turnaround it is possible.