So what are the elements that make up a good video shoot for you as a client of a video production company? Well we have been around the block for a while and would like to share our two cents as to what you should get and what you should expect when you contract to have your video production done by a video professional.
1. Well for my dollar the number one thing of all is reliability. When you have a production, story, script you need shot you want to work with someone who is reliable, flat out no questions asked every time. That means they are on time (or early) for everything, ranging from pre production meetings to the shoot itself. That means that they show up with the gear and personnel to do the shoot right every time. That means the gig gets done right in the time frame that you planned and the personnel are personable and friendly in the process.
Do I fit these criteria? You bet I do. In fact I have always lived by these principles throughout my history in the business. There is nothing that bothers me more than not being able to do the job right. So how do I get around that? I don’t. I come and I do the job right the first time. No excuses.
2. Secondly is being prepared to do the job right. That means that when the video crew arrive on the gig they are prepared with the gear they have, everything is working and in order, they are prepared in their understanding of the shoot and what it takes to get it done, and they are prepared and ready to work with you the client.
I come prepared for every shoot. In fact the only rare times I am annoyed in this business is when I go to a shoot and there is not enough information to be able to do the job right. There is no time for wasting trying to figure out what to do. I believe in advance preparation. You should expect that out of your video professional. All the best guys in the business that I work with hold this as key to their approach and so do I.
3. Another key element of a good video shoot is friendly and courteous behavior by the video crew. You are paying for their time (at a good rate I might add) and you should expect them to be a pleasure to work with and by days end someone you are happy to shake hands with and say good-bye and see you again.
4. High quality gear! Need I say more? You hire someone to come and do your special shoot and they show up with sub standard gear that is not in good working order and you are going to be upset, as well you should be. Whether it is a Beta SP gig or a DV Cam gig (we do both of these formats) we show up with high quality gear that is in good order so that there will not be problems on the shoot. Of course things can happen but we try to minimize the chances of that happening at all costs. If I don’t have the gear you need for the shoot then I will make sure and get it and get good gear that works right.
5. And last but not least is the creative input of the video professionals. Even the most tightly scripted shoots can benefit from the creative input of your video professionals at the right time and place. We have done lots of gigs over the years and know how to make things happen. You never want your crew to be overbearing with regard to creative input but if they can add to the shoot then by all means they should add their input to makes things better.
I always assess the producer, talent, and client to find how much they want from me in terms of creative input. If they know what they are doing and are getting the most bang from their buck in terms of getting good video then I roll with it. However if there is any kind of void that needs to be filled and I can add from my experience to the mix I will find the right avenue for injecting my creative input that will enhance the shoot.