I’ve shot a lot of weddings since starting First Impressions Video. They are gratifying, for sure, but a challenge because of the emotion associated with them–and the desire to get it right. As it is in most event videography, there are no “second takes.” Between bride and groom prep, through the ceremony and reception, there are many aspects to capture and as a result, several places where things can go sideways–especially during the ceremony.
The still photographer has a pivotal role in a wedding and I’ve worked with many outstanding ones. A crucial element that constitutes an “outstanding” photographer is an inherent sense to “share the space” with videographers. This is extremely vital as both photographer and videographer have key “money shots” that are essential components of the photographer’s album and the videographer’s DVD (or other delivery medium). In a wedding I recently recorded for a very special family, I found myself working with one of the most difficult and selfish photographers I’ve ever encountered. Not only that, he brought his son as a 2nd camera, and together, they seemed to go out of their way to crowd me out of all the aforementioned “money shots.” I was able to get them, despite their obliviousness to my presence, as if I wasn’t entitled to the same space they occupied. As we reached the “I now pronounce you” moment, I actually had to physically move one of them so that I could capture “you may now kiss your bride!” The guy seemed stunned that I pulled him out of the way and I can assure you that as a 240-pound former Marine, I was no longer in the mood for these antics, as this had gone on throughout the ceremony.
This behavior wasn’t missed by the family who were equally displeased, and said so to me. The disappointing part is that I go out of my way to befriend not only the photographers assigned to a wedding, but all of the vendors. I’m also pleased to say, that this is a rare occurrence. We all have important jobs to do to make the day super special for the bride and groom, and their families and friends. In order for that to happen and for us to do our jobs in ways that exceed expectations, we have to…wait for it…share the space!
As a Baby Boomer, I can’t act surprised by the news: Millenials will outspend Boomers in 2017! Our days as the drivers of the economy are dwindling! But if you offer a product or service, don’t despair! By taking proper steps, you can be embraced by this up and coming generation who will have major dollars to spend! Among the steps that must be taken, including video in your marketing is a “must do.”
Google recently published a consumer survey which included two infographics that make this point crystal clear! If you want to attract Millenials, you will need video to do it!
Sources: Google, and “What Happens When Millennials Get the Wallet,” by Berglass + Associates and Women’s Wear Daily.
POST SCRIPT: The very next day after I published this blog post, good friend and former colleague, Cameron Jonsson, wrote a killer essay on how to properly market to Millenials! Check it out here: http://huff.to/1j5PLsh
Call me for excellent video production that won’t break the bank! Or request a quote here
I just returned from Palm Springs, where I went to shoot a wedding. It was a really cool occasion (though HOT out in the Desert!)–even in spite of it being a holiday weekend. I normally wouldn’t work a holiday, but the groom was an Air Force pilot, and he chose the Palm Springs Air Museum for his wedding venue!
Lots of people were efficiently scurrying around–all working their butts off to make it a memorable occasion, and it occurred to me that it is important to acknowledge the teams that make weddings happen as smoothly as possible. We’re talking about the wedding planners, venue planners, officiants & clergy, food and beverage providers, florists, cake makers, DJs, bands and other music providers, and, of course, photographers and videographers. We all have our respective tasks, but our goals are mutual: to make an extraordinary day for the bride and groom! And I don’t really like the term ‘vendors’ because it often diminishes the role we all play…I prefer the term ‘partner’ because that’s who we are in making the event special!
Thank you all for what you do!
Now before you start reaching for the “Off” or other brand of insect repellent, I’m talking about the little logo at the bottom of your video. MTV was arguably the first media outlet to use branded video content, way back in the dark ages of the 1980s, and over the decades, it has now become unusual to not find the little logo (sometimes called a “bug” or a “snipe”) in one of the lower corners of your screen. Next time you’re watching TV, take note of the logo and how/where it’s placed!
Branding is an important component in your marketing and it is fairly simple to apply your logo to your videos. Here are 3 still image examples from videos with “bugs” on them…check out the lower right-hand corner:
Call me for more information on how to brand YOUR next video, and enhance the continuity of your brand. And remember, I won’t break the bank shooting it for you!
I shot a wedding this past October. The couple and their family couldn’t have been nicer! I got this wonderful note shortly after the wedding:
“Terry, thank you for being my videographer. I don’t even need to see the video to already know you did a great job, I can’t wait! Even my guests commented on how they could tell you genuinely enjoyed your job and that will show in the quality. Your pricing was also very reasonable and the video will be the most cherished item for me so I can relive my special night, thanks again, we can’t wait to see the video!”
The wedding venue was one of the most challenging in which I’ve ever filmed, with extremely severe contrasts between the late-day western sun blasting into the windows and the interior of the venue which was quite dark. Even with my own extra light fixture, it didn’t help much, but I persevered. And because the final product didn’t meet my strict expectations, I gave the couple some of their money back. The great news came when I received the following comments from the very happy bride:
“Thank you Terry, you did a great job, made me cry. And I appreciate your professionalism, I had a feeling the venue would be difficult to work with, thank you for the refund. I will surely recommend you and provide positive reviews!”
Well, thank you, Lisa…you just did!
…I have a question: Got video?
Let’s get something on the schedule this year!
2014 was a great year for First Impressions Video and I want to extend my heartfelt thanks to the clients that are also my friends. I value you and welcome the opportunity to serve in 2015.
Got video? Need video?
When you run a small business, you wear a LOT of hats! One of the things that must be done in contemporary business is to ensure that your business can be found when people are searching online for the product or service you offer. So imagine my elation to discover this today, when doing a search for “video production”
Search engine optimization (SEO) is an ongoing activity and many business owners use outside agencies to help get these kinds of results. I am fortunate to have spent the last decade in digital marketing before launching First Impressions Video. SEO is also very fluid and tomorrow my rankings can change–good or bad. But after working at this for quite a while, it’s nice to see Google “smiling at my website” today! Full disclosure: there were three listings that preceded First Impressions Video in the search results, but one was a generic Yelp listing with no specific company cited; the second was for Costa Mesa Television, which is not a video production business and the third was a directory page of the “top 15 video production services in Costa Mesa.” None of those was a stand-alone business.
This post is dedicated to people that choose to shoot their own video. On occasion, I have been asked to take on editing assignments where, in order to save cost, a client has provided video footage they’ve captured. Nothing can be more disappointing to any editor than to find hours of footage that is barely usable because of poor camera technique, including pans, tilts, zooms and rack focus, that are caused primarily due to an unstable base from which to shoot. And while I too have watched “Modern Family” and “The Office” which popularized the “mockumentary” style of cinematography, with “whip pans” and “snap zooms,” I would argue that stable videos with smooth movements are far less jarring to the eyes. For the do-it-yourselfer, there is a simple solution: a sturdy tripod!
Tripods have been around since cameras were the weight of a Volkswagen—and almost as big, and you needed a very strong platform to support them. Now, cameras are super small and we’ve all seen them integrated into today’s smartphones and even watches. Are tripods going the way of the dodo as a result? No!
Think about this: Say you’re watching your son or daughter singing in the school choir and you’re in your seat 50 rows away from the stage trying to capture the proud moment when your child steps forward for a solo. You’ve got your Galaxy or iPhone zoomed all the way out and now your body starts to shake from fatigue in the hands and arms. You get home to see what you captured, only to discover a blurry mess because you weren’t able to keep the device steady. Bummer!! And don’t be fooled by the claims of the device’s manufacturer about “image stabilization.” At high zoom settings, any body movement will be amplified, so give yourself the best chance of getting the shot right, and use a tripod.
Tripods come in many shapes, sizes and price points, but to not use one is to invite disappointment. At the very least, get one with strong legs and a “fluid head” so that camera movement is as smooth as possible. Also make sure the tripod’s head can lock. Nothing will cause more panic than being 10 feet away from your camera when it topples over because the head wasn’t locked and the whole rig became unbalanced. The good news is that tripods can accommodate most any camera made today, including the aforementioned smartphones and watches.
The takeaway: Make the investment in a good tripod…your videos will be much better because of it!