HOW TO TELL WHEN YOU HIRE A GOOD VERSUS A BAD PRODUCTION STUDIO IN FORT LAUDERDALE OR MIAMI FLORIDA

In this day and age, if you managed to find this blog post, you’re most certainly aware of how important videos are in the schemes of business. Today, we take a look at “How To Tell When You Hire A Good Versus A Bad Production Studio in Fort Lauderdale or Miami Florida”.

Now before we begin and get into this topic more in depth it’s important to first and foremost EDUCATE YOURSELF briefly on what kind of video you are after. The point is if, as a client, you have no idea or a foggy one of what you want to get out of your production project your planning for disaster and you know the saying about when you fail to plan, you plan to fail. You don’t have to understand how all the equipment or process works to achieve a great video production, but it is important to be able to communicate what you are expecting out of the production studio. No matter how great the production team is, a clear vision is very important to achieving the desired results you're after.

So moving on, when you hire a production studio in the Fort Lauderdale or Miami area you are met with an array of different options. And, truth be told most of them are awful. The number one way in deciphering who got the chops and who doesn’t is watching complete videos they have finished. Most people will tell you something that is called a “Demo Reel” is the best thing to watch or better yet check out is my IMDB credits, which if you don’t know what that is it’s okay because it’s not full proof anyways. However, we’ll get into that in a second. 

You see when you hire someone based off their Demo Reel you’re hiring them based off their best shots or moments they’ve ever captured. If you’re a hiring a photographer that has a video of his best work put together in a montage that may work, but a great video is much more than that wouldn’t you agree? Out of the things a video does it simply is about the experience and entertainment a viewer gets out of watching the video. Whether your hiring a production studio for a infomercial or maybe even a movie, the point is to entertain viewers with exceptional content which leads to more views or sales. So if you ask for only a demo reel from a potential studio you’re only shooting yourself in the foot because you're not watching the experience that particular video conveyed, you're watching only a collection of good looking shots. And, that is not what will drive subscribers or consumers to your brand.

The last point was a generalized statement about production studios or applicants, but this next point is geared to Florida. THIS IS NOT A UNION HEAVY STATE. What the heck does that mean? It means that when less Union operated productions come into town there frequently are more (non-union) freelancers or supposed “filmmakers” that think they are seasoned pros in production. There is nothing wrong with freelancers BUT with that title comes less responsibility and regulations in the entertainment industry. This means they are less experienced in the structure of the professional filmmaking process. More specifically, they are not accustom to the formulas that entertainment analysts have developed for higher user interactivity and engagement. 

Next on the discussion is the dreaded contracts topic. And, it’s funny because it should be self explanatory but this definitely needs to be mentioned. If either party is NOT willing to sign operating agreements or what is expected of each party in regards to compensation or the production process then walk away immediately. South Florida is a breeding ground for individuals who like to take advantage on both sides so don’t become the sucker and get it in writing!

Furthermore, if a production company partakes in any drug use while filming they should be poorly recommended because this is not professional or acceptable. Everyone likes to have a great time on set and it is the Sunshine state but have self control.

Still worth mentioning is what assets does the production studio you’re looking to hire own? Do they have a studio? What cameras do they have in-house? Although there are some great shooters out there, when you are communicating with a studio that has blood in the game, so-to-speak, it can be reassuring knowing that this company takes their job seriously and didn’t go buy a 5D Mark 3 over the weekend and decide to tell their friends they are a professional filmmaker. It takes years and years of practice to achieve results that are truly captivating and seamless. 

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Finally, stray away from egotistical filmmakers that think they know better. If you’re the client then you’re entrusting them with the responsibility to exact your vision but also they have a duty to you to make it as you see fit. There are so many filmmakers who don’t absorb this very well because they think their experience grants them better ideas and this is not always the case, and even if it was its not a studios place to take your money but belittle your input. This is definitely a red flag!

 

In closing, the best rule of thumb is to:

 

1. Watch complete videos.

2. Don’t hire based off of Demo Reels.

3. Get verified references or credentials.

4. Get your agreement in writing.

5. Don’t hire anyone who does drugs on set.

6. Assess their assets.

7. Don’t hire anyone who can’t fulfill your wants or desires for a video.

 

There are some great production individuals here in the florida area, but there are a lot of awful ones too. So do your research, get involved, ask questions, and don’t hire the first good looking image that comes your way. Some studios do great work but are a total pain to work with. 

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