Video/Film production is typically a work-for-hire business. Companies or government facilities with video needs typically outsource to freelancers or production companies. In most cases a freelancer would still present themselves as a production company in order to land the job. Since launching a production company sometimes can be intimidating and most artists would prefer to concentrate on the video itself and not the company, here are three expert tips that would help make launching a little easier.
#1 Make a Plan or Plan to Fail. The very first step is to make a business plan. According to Jessica Still of Inc. magazine, one of the top five reasons why startup companies fail is because they have no plan at all. Before launching a production company, decide what type of video the company will produce, the clientele that is interested in that product, and a marketing strategy to reach that clientele. Other factors to be considered are: the equipment that is needed and cost, a contingency fund, and the amount of clients needed to clear a profit in the shortest timeframe.
#2 Protect Your Investment. Incorporate the business, get liability insurance and no “hand shake” deals. As an individual you want to protect your personal assets from anything liability the company may encounter. Starting an LLC, S-Corp or Corporation will separate you personal liability from the company. Obtaining liability insurance will cover the company in most situations that may occur. Every business transaction needs to be documented in a form of a contract that’s professionally drawn by a lawyer. Contracts should cover these key points: payment amount, payment duration, who retains rights to materials, and who is responsible for any other licensing. All talent that is used in production should commit to an agreement, liability waiver and image release to protect your company from future complications.
#3 Create A Unique Brand. The market for video production is saturated with thousands of production companies, but there is room for more with a unique niche. The best way to stand out is to brand your company with the quality that drives it. For example Disney is known for creating a magic experience. Creating a brand consistsa of giving your clients a customer experience that is unique to your brand and staying in front of their minds through marketing. Successful marketing strategies increases brand awareness by highlighting the strong points of the company.