Agencies Connect Production Budgets to Media Buy

The internet has the ability to target markets and demographics in a way TV hasn’t been able to do.  Combine that with the fact that posting content on the internet is much less expensive when compared to regional or national TV media buys.  More and more advertising dollars are moving towards digital ads.  Additionally, you have a younger demographic that doesn’t even watch traditional television any longer, preferring to watch only YouTube and internet content.  

In the past, production budgets have loosely been tied to media buys.  A Super bowl spot will have a large budget as well as national spots.  Regional TV media buys would traditionally have a lower budget, industrials even less and so on.  So, when agencies reach out to production companies, to shoot projects for the internet, the budgets are generally much lower.  Yet often they are expecting the same quality as they would get for something shot for national TV.  What you often hear from the agency is, “It’s just for internet.”

BDP is known for producing stunning imagery for its clients.  In order to deliver that level of production it makes no difference whether our company is shooting for the internet or a spot on Super bowl, our production costs are relatively the same.  There are well over 200 line-items in a production bid (not including any post) and leaving many of them blank does not give us the support we need to deliver the production value clients are used to.

While the internet is a less expensive medium for advertisers it can be a more effective way for them to reach their audiences so why not put those savings into the production?

“The basis of content on the internet is now shifting from text to video.  This allows advertisers to take advantage of the kind of branding advertising they are used to on television.”

Michael Wolf, CEO and Co-founder of Activate Inc.


Is GOOD PRE-PRODUCTION enough to keep you out of trouble?

What makes for a long day or a short day?  We all know that good pre-production and a sensible shoot schedule is the best way to avoid excessively long days.  Once in a while things can go so well that you finish early but the fact is we're nearly always cramming three shoot days into two.  

But, no matter how much pre-production you do or how well planned the schedule is, the days can be really long if you're working with clients that are opposing your every move.  You may have done your homework, but the client may have been so busy they couldn’t follow pre-production and are not up-to-speed on the first shoot day.  If the synergy isn't there between client and crew you can expect it to be a very exhausting job.  

On the other hand, it can be gratifying if you're working with a client who realizes they are part of a team.  You could have long days yet still feel invigorated at the end of the day because there is an energy created by all the clients focusing on a common goal.

Don't think that doing solid pre-production will keep you on the straight and narrow.  Unless every single member on the team shares the same goal, there can be potholes along the way.