6 Clever Ways to Save Money with a Video Production Company in California
Hiring a video production company in California has a reputation for being expensive. As a result, too many business owners don’t even consider adding video to their marketing strategy.
That’s a HUGE loss, because video can be a serious money-making tool.
Here’s the thing: you don’t need a multi-million-dollar studio to produce high-quality videos that will help you grow your business.
You don’t have to DIY your videos, either.
In this article, we’ll talk about how you can add video to your digital marketing strategy without breaking the bank. Let’s get started!
1. Hire the right video production company in California.
We can already hear you saying, “How can I save money on video if I have to pay someone else?”
Saving money isn’t just about spending as little as you can – it’s also about maximizing every cent.
Hiring a video production company means not paying out-of-pocket for equipment such as:
- Lighting equipment
- Sound equipment
- Editing software, etc.
These things cost a fortune and they’re not going to be worth it if you’re not doing this full-time.
And even if you buy these yourself, you still have to hire directors, camera operators, video editors, producers, assistants and other people to make the magic happen.
When you hire a video production company instead of doing it yourself, you save money on equipment AND labor costs.
2. Use free shooting locations.
Renting a venue for your video production can get expensive, fast.
So instead of renting a studio, why not get creative with it?
For instance, you can shoot a product demo in your office or in the parking lot of your building. Want a talking head video about the company? Shoot it in your lobby or on the sidewalk.
Be resourceful with where you shoot! Look for unique spots around town that are free or low-cost.
People love it when brands get creative and show personality through their videos, so don’t be afraid to think out of the box.
Speaking of getting creative…
3. Make video magic in front of a green screen.
A green screen is a staple in the world of commercial video production. It’s basically just a big green background that you can film against and then replace with anything from another location to animation elements using special effects software during post-production.
In fact, it’s one way we save our clients’ money here at Castaway Creative.
We’ve set up a mini green screen set complete with a 4K camera, professional microphones, pre-set lights and a teleprompter.
The results are insanely good!
This set-up is particularly awesome for “stand ups,” which is when you have a spokesperson on screen, speaking directly to the camera.
We can use the green screen to add your brand logo in there, insert animations or even put in stock footage of different locations to make it look like you shot the entire video on location.
What’s great about green screen is that it can be used for videos of all shapes and sizes, which makes it a perfect way to get creative without spending too much money!
It also gives your videos a more polished look and feel, which also results in higher conversions for our clients.
What’s even cooler is that we’re able to do this right here at Castaway Creative with no outside help. That means you don’t have to spend more on hiring a bigger crew or renting out another space.
4. Use animated videos.
Animation is another great way to save money on video production.
If you’ve got a story that can be easily told through animation, then go for it! Animation means not having to worry about casting professional actors and other expenses.
Animated videos also have more of a unique look and feel, which can help them stand out from the crowd. They’re especially effective in social media. Achieve that perfect balance of informative, fun and quirky and you may even have a viral hit on your hands!
For example, check out this super fun video we made for SamTrans, featuring cute little monsters misbehaving on the bus.
It was a terrific way to approach a topic that may not be interesting to some people (bus etiquette) and turn it into a fun and informative series.
To produce the videos, we combined animation, motion graphics and live action footage.
In other words, animated video production is also another great way for us (and you) to get creative with brand storytelling without having too much money on the line.
5. Find “actors” in your circle.
Hiring professional actors can be pretty pricey, but they’re not essential for many types of video marketing.
If you’re looking for a more budget-friendly way to approach video, consider tapping into your personal network of friends and family. You can also pick from your employees, customers or even people in your local community!
Think about asking them to play roles that are true to who they are. For example, if you’re looking for a spokesperson but don’t have the budget for an actor, consider using someone from within your company instead.
Want a testimonial video? Ask someone who’s genuinely had a positive experience with your brand.
Everyone’s first reaction is usually, “I’m not an actor!” But the truth is, someone who is familiar with you and your business will come across as more relatable and authentic.
We’ve also found that using a teleprompter tremendously helps non-actors get into their characters and feel more comfortable on camera. A teleprompter allows your “actors” to read their lines at a natural pace.
In fact, here’s one of our clients, Philip Auerbach, using our teleprompter for his social media videos promoting their translation company, Auerbach International.
Notice how he looks so confident on screen – it feels like he’s speaking directly to you, even though he is reading his lines.
Finally, we have a teleprompter in our mini green screen set, so you don’t have to worry about renting one.
6. Write the script yourself.
Similar to professional actors, hiring a professional screenwriter can cost a lot of money, too.
They’re a great investment if you have room in your marketing budget, but if not, it’s completely fine to write the script yourself or with your team.
We suggest starting out by writing an outline of what you want to say and how you want to structure your video around those points.
Brainstorm using these questions:
- What is your topic (your service, product, promotion, company news, etc.)?
- What are some of the benefits your product/service has to offer?
- Who is your target audience and who will be most interested in this video content? Why would they want to watch it?
- What do you want your audience to feel after watching the video?
- What action do you want them to take after watching (e.g. sign up for a newsletter, buy a product, call you, etc.)?
- Do you have any specific sounds, images or footage that you want to include?
It’s also a great idea to have your script reviewed by someone else who isn’t familiar with the topic. This can be your family, friends or even another business owner or an actual customer.
This way, they’re able to give you honest feedback on what makes sense or doesn’t make sense from an outsider perspective.
If you’re having trouble with this part, feel free to reach out to the Castaway Creative team!
We can also help you come up with a concept, content development, script and storyboard as part of our video production services.
3 More Ways to Get Your (Video) Money’s Worth
Now that you know how to save money on video production near me, you also need to make sure you’re getting great ROI from your videos.
Here are some tips:
Upload your video everywhere.
This means Facebook, YouTube, Vimeo, LinkedIn, Twitter, your website, etc. You want eyes on your amazing video content!
Make sure you have a call to action in the video.
Great examples of this are including your website address, asking people to tap on the screen or telling them what they should do next after watching it.
The goal is to keep their attention even after they’re done watching and have them engage with your business.
Share, share, share!
Don’t forget that once you have a great video and it’s out there on multiple platforms, the most important thing is getting people to watch it.
This means spending time sharing and promoting your content through social media channels like Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, etc.
You can even create a schedule in advance to keep track of when you’re going to post your new video across all the social networks that are important for your business. Make sure you have some interesting images or content alongside them so they’ll get more views, likes, shares and clicks!
Need Affordable Video Production in California?
We’ve got more tricks up our sleeves here at Castaway Creative!
If you’re interested in adding video to your marketing strategy, we’d love to help. As an award-winning creative agency based in the Bay Area, we know our way around creating outstanding videos that don’t cost a fortune.
On top of that, our full-service video production team can take care of everything from content creation to pre-production, shooting and post-production.