Video is an integral part of a successful digital marketing campaign. The endless options for video production can initially be daunting. However, clearly understanding your video marketing agency needs will help you find the perfect video marketing agency for your next video project.
Create Project Scope
Create a comprehensive scope before taking steps to find a video agency. Understanding the project at-hand and the goals it needs to achieve will set you up for success. Review your company’s vision and values and keep them in mind throughout the process. They will be the foundation of any video project.
Know why you are creating video content. What goal are you setting out to achieve through the project? Are you informing your customers? Engaging new ones? Or calling viewers to action? Deciding the goal of the project will set everything else into motion.
Know for Who
Know who you are targeting. Gain insight into who the target demographic should be. What are their interests? Do they tend to surf YouTube for hours or do they scroll through Instagram? Knowing the target demographic provides a customer profile that you should keep in mind throughout the creative process.
Once your goals and target audience are finalized, strategize on what will achieve your goals for that target audience. Coming up with ideas for what type of video to create will help narrow down what type of video production team you will need.
Establish a Timeline
At this point, you will have a good grasp on what your project needs to be successful. Now you can put your goals, audience, and video requirements into a timeline. Think about any specific deadlines or launch dates you need to meet. Your timeline may need to be tweaked once you start meeting with the video production team. Having an initial idea of your timeline will aid in creating a budget and finding the right partner for the project.
Create a Budget
This is a very important step in finding the right video marketing agency and will likely dictate who you approach. Think about the goal of the project and how important it is to your brand. If it’s a customer-facing company culture video, you may want to invest more money than you would for a simple internal training video. Other things to consider may be the potential ROI of the video project, potential reach, and the scope of work.
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Prepare Search Criteria
Before you immediately start searching for a digital marketing agency, prepare a set of criteria. There is a wide variety of video production options available. Choosing between a freelancer, a small agency, and a large production house depends on the type of video and the scope of the project. Agencies will have different resources depending on their specialty. For example, if you think you want to incorporate animation, you need to consider agencies that provide animation services. Take a look into what style will best support your brand. Create a list of style elements you are looking for and add them as another set of criteria.
Perform Your Search
Start your search on Google by searching the keywords “video marketing agency”, “video production”, or “freelance videographer” in your area. It’s important to take some time for this process and make sure the person you engage is the right fit.
Some videographers create a demo reel to highlight the flashiest and most enticing videos. Many times demo reels are not a great representation of the videographer’s abilities. Do not decide on a videographer before seeing their most recent projects. Their most recent work will be a better representation of their skill set than relying on an older demo reel.
Freelance vs. Agency
It can be tempting to hire a family member or friend to do video work. Sometimes family and friends can be a useful, less expensive resource. But before hiring your cousin’s son, look into his level of experience and whether or not he has the capability to achieve your goals. Most of these situations end up costing more at the end of the day. Whether it costs the relationship or it costs you hiring someone else, it’s generally best to avoid the situation altogether.
Don’t forget the strategic side of the video making. You can have a slick-looking video but still not achieve your goals without a good strategy. When searching for the right video partner, make sure they provide strategy. Implementing strategy from the beginning of the project will optimize the video for your goals.
When you are searching for a video marketing agency, search for a long-term partner and not just for a specific project. Video is an integral part of any marketing strategy. Having a go-to video agency will make that strategy thrive. Your marketing videos will look cohesive and will point to a broader marketing goal.
To perform a successful search, look at agencies who have worked in your industry before. Look into agencies that have experience targeting your customers. The best agency for the job will fulfill your needs both in budget and experience.
Once you have narrowed down your search to several potential agencies, create a brief for the project. Summarize your company’s goals and mission. Include your target audience, the project goal, and a list of needs for the project.
Ask the agency questions about the service they provide. Some questions to ask are:
- What services are in-house vs. outsourced?
- Previously, what projects have they worked on that are similar to your project?
- What would the timeline and budget look like for your project?
After you have a clear understanding of what they can offer, ask them to put together a proposal for the project.
When you’ve gathered the proposals from the prospective agencies, review the criteria you initially set. Does your criteria stand up to what the agencies can provide within budget? Make any tweaks you need to the list based on what you discovered in the interview process. Once you’ve refined your expectations, compare each proposal. If there are inconsistencies between proposals, ask for clarification from the agencies. That way if there are variants in rates or deliverables, you have an understanding of why. After getting clarification, evaluate whether the proposals meet the needs of your criteria.
Make a Selection
Narrow down the final contenders by eliminating the outliers. Agencies that are far out of budget or that don’t offer a service you need are the first to go. From there keep whittling your list down. Take into account the agency’s communication throughout this process. If an agency has poor communication upfront, it will only get spottier. Now all you need to do is make a selection that you see being a valuable video partner and let them know the good news!