September 27, 2012 \ Geoff Birmingham
5 Ways to Save on Your Video Production Budget

It’ll come as no surprise, but when folks are talking to us about possible video projects, they often are wondering about ways to save on budget. When you are in the concept stage for your video, here a few ways you can make your production more budget-friendly.

1. Shoot more than you need. This seems counter-intuitive, I know, but there is logic to it. If you are able to think of video for future needs and film content for that video at the same time you’re recording for your current project, that can save money. Asking the crew to stay a couple extra hours to record some video that you won’t use immediately will be less expensive than asking them to return at a later date.

2. Become an assistant producer. Sometimes an easy way to reduce your video budget is to assume some of the producer’s responsibilities. If you have interviews that are being transcribed, ask if you can read them and craft the first script for the video. Or, rather than simply handing off a bunch of existing video and/or pictures for use in the current project, offer to review the material yourself and select the best shots. Whatever you can do to reduce the time your production company is spending during post-production will save on cost.

3. Interview fewer people. It’s not uncommon for clients to feel that they need to interview ten people when four or five will do the trick. Particularly for online video (which should be short), you don’t have the room to fit in a ton of different voices. Identify a few key people who you are confident will deliver, and that’s enough.

4. Limit the number of locations for filming. It’s kind of obvious to say, but if the crew is spending time traveling from one place to another, that’s less time they are filming and money lost.

5. Use pictures rather than live video. This is not our usual recommendation to people because we know that substituting a photo for live video is usually a compromise. But if it will require resources to get to a location with a crew to capture the live video when still photography already exists, then it can also be a viable option.