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Thread: Higher-End Market

  1. Default Higher-End Market

    Hi guys,

    Does anybody have any tips for breaking into the higher-end market for event videography, particularly weddings? I am relatively new to the business, have been pursuing it now officially full-time for two years (though have been in "media" pretty much all of my life). Unfortunately, I'm not in England where wedding videos seem to go for a premium rate. I am in another province of the UK where wedding videos are priced at on average 600 - and everybody locally is undercutting everybody else, which I feel is the wrong way to go about attracting people to your business.

    At the start, I undercut everyone too - just to get my foot in the door, but am now cranking up my prices as the quality of my work improves. Here's the sad thing, though - when I quote anything over 700 I never hear another word back from the enquirer. It seems *most* people I am encountering are just looking for the cheapest videographer as opposed to who they think is the best...

    Now, would they do that with a photographer? Or even their cake? At weddings, I do some discrete detective work to find out how much the other vendors are getting paid - and low and behold some of the photographers are getting paid upwards of 1800, and the DJs are on 700 for 4 hours work.

    The amount a videographer gets paid locally, is really disproportionate.

    Now, two companies here are charging 1200 for a wedding video - and they seem to be busy enough. What are they doing right? The quality of my work is pretty much on a par with theirs.

    Thoughts / opinions?
    Last edited by griffinmill; 01-06-2012 at 01:45 PM.

  2. #2

    Default

    Another province of the UK? hmmm where exactly? All info helps

    I ventured into the higher end market about 12 years ago after a word of advice from a tog. We used to cover 50+ weddings a year, mainly 600 jobbies and were in a rut we couldn't break out of. It's 'the crowd' of clients you get working for who then recommend you to their friends . . . a never ending cycle.
    So, following the tog's advice we booked a stand for the weekend at the county's most expensive wedding show, which was in a very affluent area. 1200 for 2 days. which was 5 times more than we ever paid before at our usual shows.
    The tog also suggested doubling our prices, which made sense, as top end clients don't see cheap as a bargain, they see it as, must be rubbish. Hope you're following the logic
    Now doubling your prices is easy, but you must also provide a top notch video to match and this is where we were already prepared.
    I'd always spent a lot of time polishing the final edit, but charging twice as much, meant we could also cover half as many and still make the same income, therefore allowing even more time to polish the video.
    Now . . . Doubling your prices and polishing the edit are only two aspects that need doing. The main focus has to be producing something the other guys can't.
    In our case, as everyone seemed to be filming on wobbly cam, I decided to aquire the best tripod head (Vinten Vision3) I could and perfect those ultra smooth, movie style pans and tilts that will always be an indicator of good filming.
    This took a little getting used to, not least carting the tripods about and varying the shots to film from different angles and viewpoints. The filming eventually became much easier, as once the head is levelled, I could zoom as far as I wanted and still have rock steady shots.
    That was one major leap up from the other bods in the area, the next was to add stuff the other guys couldn't. The Same Day Edit!
    I perfected a failsafe system that was not only a great crowd pleaser, but a very lucrative add on that earned us an extra 345 every time someone booked a wedding with this included, and boy did they queue up for this. Every time we produced one, and remember these were now all being filmed at top end weddings/venues too, the clients friends/parents who were getting married also wanted it. A winner!!
    To top all our competition we also bought a camera crane, and archived crane shots of all the top venues to add a little more magic to the edits.

    So, my advice may be of help, if only for you to take a broader look, not at how similar you are to your competition, but how you can offer a superior product at twice their prices.
    Consultation fee invoice in the post
    My opinions are just that . . . Mine. It's not personal, but is based on my emotional and professional reaction to requested critique. If you choose to ignore constructive comments, I'll just assume you're a vanity poster and not posting to improve your filming and editing skills.

    Ex A.P.V Videomaker of the year - Ex M.M. IOV Come join my EXclusive club

  3. Default

    This all makes sense.

    Yes, I have invested in some smooth tripod heads - and never ever shoot handheld. I also have a slider which is truly one of the best pieces of equipment I have bought, and have also been looking at cranes, too - just need to get paid for a few jobs this year before splashing out on one. Your idea about exhibiting at an expensive trade fair sounds like an excellent idea and one I will definitely give some thought too. You are also spot on about the cheapie clients recommending you to their cheapie friends - and what is worse about that is the cheapie ones are sometimes problematic clients, and those problematic clients all have problematic friends. :-(

    The same day edit is something I have considered and I will give this some more thought. Do you produce the whole wedding DVD, or is it just a highlight compilation you're producing for the same day edit?
    Last edited by griffinmill; 01-06-2012 at 08:21 PM.

  4. #4

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by griffinmill View Post
    Do you produce the whole wedding DVD, or is it just a highlight compilation you're producing for the same day edit?
    I'm good, I'm not superhuman. The whole wedding edit takes a week!
    It's just a highlight section set to one song of their choice. The start and end points are critical to create the crowd reactions though.
    My opinions are just that . . . Mine. It's not personal, but is based on my emotional and professional reaction to requested critique. If you choose to ignore constructive comments, I'll just assume you're a vanity poster and not posting to improve your filming and editing skills.

    Ex A.P.V Videomaker of the year - Ex M.M. IOV Come join my EXclusive club

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