So let’s say you’ve been tasked with finding a video production crew in your area and have no clue where to start. You might have gotten so far as typing “Atlanta Video Production” in Google, only to find a long list of “Top Ten” articles, ads, and Iocal business listings. Where to go from here?
If you’re not aware of how the Google front page works, the first few hits are always paid advertisements. While paying for an ad on Google might speak to the budget of a particular company, it has nothing to do with quality. Just because they popped up first doesn’t mean they’re a good fit for your project. You need to do a little more legwork than that (sorry).
Next up are map listings (which are part of something Google is pushing called “My Google Business”). These are people who have taken the time to get their place of business verified through Google, and you can quickly see how close they are to you (or the shoot location). Most video production companies are not going to charge you travel fees if you’re within a 1hr drive, but if you go beyond that and choose someone 3-4hrs away, anticipate that being added to the quote for an onsite shoot.
After the map, the next Iinks are all “organic results”. This means they’re showing up because the Google algorithm took a look at your search keywords (Atlanta Video Production) and gave you the most popular / relevant / helpful information it could find. What usually breaks the top three, are third party sites that put together these “Top 10” lists. Sometimes these sites give out the top spots to the $ highest bidder $, so don’t exactly take their word for it, but it is a great way to see who’s making a name for themselves in your area.
Reviews, reviews, reviews. There’s a reason places you go might hound you for a good review; it is often deciding factor when people are looking for products or services. Reviews are not only a great way to see how clients feel about a company but also read about their particular strengths or weaknesses.
Google Business Reviews might pop up first, but we’ve found these two sites offer a richer, more in-depth look into local companies. The first is UpCity. This site is a great place to not only find video production companies near you but companies in any other industry as well! They’ve become a “who’s who” of businesses, and also do a great job putting together “Top 10” lists (like we mentioned in the first point).
One thing you should do is not only look at the five-star rating, but also the number of reviews. A 5-star business with only 3 reviews may not be as reliable as a 4.5-star business with 30 reviews. With UpCity, you can sort your search results by “number of reviews”, as well as their rating and score.
Next up is Clutch! This place has taken the customer review and absolutely RUN with it. Customers leave in-depth, almost case-study like reviews, talking about their entire experience with the service and the results from that service. Because of this, you may find fewer reviews left on each business (they take some serious time to fill out on the customer’s end) but the ones you find will tell you a LOT about the heart of that business and their operation. It also tells you about the customer that left the review, and if they have a business, what size and how many employees they have. This gives you a good idea of who this video production company is used to working with as well.
Another thing we LOVE about Clutch is the way they break down the business focus. They’ve got a percentage bar that shows the skills of the business, as well as what industries they seem to work with. This isn’t always 100% accurate, but at a glance, it’s great information to have.
After the above steps, you’ve probably got your eye on a handful of video production companies. Open up a note or doc and paste in the links to your top five picks, then open up Google Maps. Our final check is going to be looking at their place of business (if they have a studio or office). It’s good practice to check out the street view, satellite view, and surrounding businesses before you make an appointment to head over.
Due to the workflow of video production, some companies don’t have an office, and their team just meets up at the shoot location, then disperses to their home-offices for the editing. (We actually work a similar way!) In this case, you might be setting a meeting up virtually, at a nearby coffee shop, or a local co-working space.
Try to get your top five down to a top three, then pass them along to your team, superior, or a group of friends. Someone might have heard of one of the businesses or catch something in their portfolio you missed. It’s always helpful to have more than one pair of eyes run over your options.
Even if you’re leaning towards one particular company, go ahead and submit to get a quote with all three. Also, keep in mind the amount of time it took each company to get back to you about the quote. When it’s time to start filming, you’re going to want a team that’s responsive and attentive to your timeline and questions.
Remember: the Iowest quote doesn’t always mean it’s the best choice. A video that looks cheap or cookie-cutter might do more harm than good for your business.
Need help deciding if the quote you got is fair? Read our post on video pricing to get a behind-the-scenes look at what quality video should cost.
We hope you now feel confident selecting a video production team near you!
If you have any questions or want to add something you think we missed, feel free to contact us anytime at firstname.lastname@example.org
1021 Wedgewood Ct
Woodstock, GA 30189