How much does a video cost?

The cost of a video, corporate type for example, can range from $1,000 to more than $20,000. The gap is  significant, but let’s keep in mind that we are talking about services offered by freelance filmmakers and small organizations. This range does not include the services offered by production companies with budgets in the hundreds of thousands of dollars. Getting an idea of the cost of a video may seem daunting; this is due to the work effort  varying quite a bit from project to project. The total cost is ultimately driven by your specific needs.
The type of project
The multiplication of shots and locations, the length of texts to be recited, and the management of actors are all factors that can make the shooting more complex and lengthy. The type of project also determines the nature and quantity of equipment needed, as well as the size of the production team.
The videographer's expertise 
Videographers’ rates vary based on expertise, style and the value they place on their work.
The length of the video
It does not always mean a higher project cost , but it can also easily bring it up if creative editing or the presence of animation is required.

What is behind the price of a video?

Several elements define the price of a videographer. The first and most important is the cost of expertise. You are not paying someone to simply hold a camera and brush pixels on a computer, you are hiring a professional who has accumulated several years of experience in the field, who has worked and trained to reach the level of skills and expertise that allows him/her to create content whose quality will be unmatched. This stored knowledge has a value and drives, in part, the rates of a videographer.

Then there is the complexity and duration of the project. For example, we can easily assume ten hours for the capture of a wedding, while less than five hours can be enough to shoot the content of a corporate video. So that's for the capture part. A video also requires an often-invisible, but essential step: post-production. And that's where the most hours are needed. A quick rule to find out how much is to multiply the hours of shooting by two or three, easy. What are the steps in post-production? Copy the footage shot, sort all the dailies, organize them, select and cut them, find the soundtrack, edit the music to get the desired length, assemble the selected dailies by declining the versions, then work on the colorimetry of each shot. Work on the animations, add logos, add sound design and polish before exporting the videos in accordance with the specifications of each platform (e.g. YouTube, Facebook, Instagram, website).

We also cannot forget the cost of equipment. Depending on the needs of the project, you may choose to use not one, but two or three cameras with their lenses. Lighting, a sound system, a teleprompter, a stabilizer, a drone, etc. When you hire an image professional, you also rent the equipment in which he/she has invested ($18,000 on average for a videographer, $10,000 for a photographer). This means you will  find the amortization of that investment in the cost of your service. This is normal. Without it, professionals would not be able to buy new equipment when the old one breaks down or simply to stay up to date with the technology. Note that the amount of equipment used during the shoot also determines the need to have one or more crew members present on site.

And lastly, the expenses and everything else. The self-employed and business owners will immediately know what we are talking about here. To summarize, we are talking about expenses inherent to the business structure, taxes, liability insurance, bank fees, communication costs, accounting services and other goodies that represent 25% to 30% of the annual budget of a videographer.

And what about photography?

We can easily apply all the principles described above to photography. The amount invested in the material is lower,and the photo retouching acts as post-production, but the expenses and the know-how of the professional remain the same.

To find out how much your project costs, request a free quote

Since every project is different, I prepare a custom estimate for each of my clients. Don’t hesitate to fill out this questionnaire to give me all the necessary details and I will get back to you quickly with a clear and detailed quote. You can also simply make a 30-minute  appointment with me by selecting the time slot that works best for you  in the calendar below.

Flora Bidaud

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