Creating a Video Studio Any Agency Can Afford
Video content has spread rampantly in the last few years. Web video advertisements are used more often and billions of videos are viewed on YouTube daily. It’s safe to say that creating video content is a viable way to engage, interact, and build relationships with both prospects and clients.
One misconception agencies have when it comes to setting up a video studio is the amount of money needed to begin shooting and editing videos. In the past, creating a video studio was much more expensive than it is today. Of course, there still is incredibly high-tech video equipment on the market that costs tens of thousands of dollars. However, high-quality video can be created in much simpler, less expensive ways today.
The list below highlights some pieces of video equipment that can help you shoot high-quality videos without costing an arm and leg.
- Video cameras: It still surprises me that handheld video cameras the size of an iPhone can be purchased for under $200. Better yet, these video cameras are capable of shooting in High Definition (1080p HD or 780p) video formats. Two low cost suggestions are the Flip Cam and the Kodak Zi8. (Cisco Systems Inc. formally announced its exit from the Flip business on April 12, 2011.)
- Camcorders: Any camcorder in the Canon Vixia line is a good option for a more capable camcorder. These products are more expensive than the Flip or Zi8, but their capabilities justify the additional cost.
- Microphones: Capturing quality audio is essential to having a good video. Viewers will watch quality video much longer than they’ll listen to poor quality audio. Each of the cameras above has an audio-in jack that allows you to connect a microphone directly to the camera. Audio-Technica has a full line of microphones that will work quite well.
- Editing: For PC users, Microsoft Movie Maker (free download from Microsoft.com) is a great option. For software with more capability we use Sony Movie Studio HD Platinum v11 (about $100). If you use a Mac, Final Cut is a great option for editing video content. iMovie is another option for those new to editing and is included with Macs.
This is the basic equipment you need to start creating videos for your agency. As you get more experience you might want to add some video lights to make sure your videos look as good as possible.
I encourage you to begin experimenting with using video in your agency as a sales and customer service tool.