The hidden cost of underpriced videos

As a Video Producer, pricing competitively is a skill. Particularly if your focus is genuinely on producing a video for a client that will perform well in its given application.

There are four key factors which determine the quality and effectiveness of a video:

  1. The calibre of staff involved
  2. The job roles specified
  3. The equipment to be used
  4. Time allocated


Because the pricing of a video is derived from the allocation of resources. This is why the biggest threat to the successful production of a video, and later its effectiveness. Is in under-specifying sufficient time and resources.

Examples include:

  • Insufficient preproduction time to:
    • Research the industry and subject matter
    • Plan the most effective video content possible
    • Make detailed filming arrangements to minimise the likelihood of on-the-day problems
    • Prepare contingency plans
    • Refine and perfect the script
    • Refine interview questions for maximum effectiveness
  • Insufficient film crew personnel which results in either:
    • Filming being rushed
    • Mistakes being made
    • Quality of production lowered
    • Missing out on filming key elements
  • Insufficient additional lighting to smoothly light any given scene
  • Insufficient graphics production or editing time, resulting in:
    • Clumsy animation with lack of detail
    • A lack of visual variety with the amount and type of shots used
    • The overall story not being told as well as it could be



The above list of problems is just an insight as to what can go wrong. To compound potential problems, showreel material cannot be fully relied upon either.

This is because every production is unique, and each requires different resources.

All of which means that you will need to take particular care when reviewing proposals to make sure that sufficient job roles and time are budgeted for.

To address this, a little investigation work and trusting your instinct will pay dividends.


A good producer will work hard in putting forward a package that will best suit your needs.

However, that can only be done if they get a solid understanding of your business, sector, and desired goals.

Comparing proposals is a very good start.

It will allow you to get a feel for the average consensus of what is required for your project. If one is wildly different to the others, this should raise a red flag relating to any of the above listed problems.

Your next step should be to ask, and (politely) challenge the producer why they have specified or omitted certain elements, if you feel that you have identified a point of difference.

Their response will not only give you the initial answer, but it will also likely shed further light as to whether or not that decision was made with the best interests and success of your project in mind.



Ultimately, if you are responsible for making a recommendation or decision. This process of comparison and investigation could very much mean the difference between a project being well delivered, or not.