I wanted to take some time to explain why I started this site and wrote these guides.
I know that lots of people don’t read Introductions at the start of books and few people read software manuals and stuff like that.
However, I’d really appreciate it if you start this journey with this article and read through in the order I’ve laid everything out. It’s in your best interest, as the guides are set-up in an order that takes you from the start of setting up a video production business, right on through to more advanced topics.
Not only that, but it gives me an opportunity to explain to the reasons for a site like this and what I hope you can achieve from taking the time to go through the information here. It also helps me personalize things a bit, so that you know more about the man who wrote all these words.
Whilst I write this some time into the site’s existence, Filmmaking Lifestyle has been around since 2010. It’s about time I got around to writing about the site and how I intend these guides to be used.
The truth is, when I started the site, I never imagined that things would take off quite as they did. The guides on this site have already helped countless awesome people just like you to start a video production business.
Maybe you’re interested in shooting commercial and corporate stuff, or maybe your in interest is in wedding videography. Or maybe you have a passion for music videos and want to know how to get started.
These guides are aimed at people who want to do any and all of those things (and more).
It’s fair to say putting these guides together has been a big time commitment. I’ve had many a late night putting the finishing touches to them and I’ve consumed what can only be described as ‘stupid amounts’ of coffee during their creation.
I hope you get everything you’re looking for from reading this site and I hope it helps give you the confidence and knowledge to setup your own video production business!
Lets start with Why I Wrote These Guides.
WHY I WROTE THESE GUIDES
I always wanted to make films that move people emotionally. I went to film school and worked my butt off in a variety of jobs and professions in order to make this happen. I now get to do it everyday and it feels amazing.
I’m not going to sit here and tell you that you can be successful at this overnight. It requires hard work and dedication, just like anything else that’s worth something in life.
This course will help you on the journey to creating a successful video business. Success means different things for different people. I make a comfortable income from video projects, and I’m in a position to scale this number depending on how much I want to work.
This is the real deal. I’ve condensed my knowledge from years of experience, trials and tribulations and reverse engineered my findings into a plan that you can follow and get real results.
Not only have I been in the trenches going hardcore and immersing myself in every aspect of mastery in these areas, but I’ve also invited feedback from business mentors who I’ve had for years, who themselves are hugely successful in a range of different industries.
WHAT THESE GUIDES ARE
I’ve written this course to be conversational. I feel like this is the best way to teach this stuff. Just imagine we’re in a quiet coffee shop somewhere and the sun is just coming up. We’ve got a lot to get through, but the coffee is on a constant boil…and damn is it good coffee!
As a successful video business owner, it’s long been a dream of mine to help people who want to enjoy the same success that I experience. I want to give something back and make a real difference in people’s lives. I genuinely have a crazy passion for this stuff!
It wasn’t long ago that I was stumbling along unsure of exactly what I wanted to do with my life. I had vague ideas about starting a business that would involve me using my “video skills.” However, I had almost zero knowledge of how to start a business and what exactly the steps were.
WHAT THESE GUIDES AREN’T
To put it into perspective, I thought that starting a video business would involve long meetings at the bank and multiple trips to various law offices, signing contracts and getting money together.
The truth is, a video business can be started for a relatively small cost nowadays. If you’re reading this, I’m going to assume that you already have a camera of some sort and the reason you’ve tracked down this material is because you want to learn how to make money with your camera.
A good DSLR camera made by Canon or Nikon (the two leading manufacturers) can be picked up for a very reasonable price.
The great thing about these cameras is that they are capable of shooting HD 1080p video that looks cinematic and professional. Gone are the days of Uncle Gene and his “video camcorder” set on a tripod at the back of the church.
This course isn’t aimed at addressing technology, though. You won’t find pages of technical discussions and breakdowns of specs, although I will touch on basic required gear to get your business off the ground in the Quick Start section. And I’m sure you’re all very much aware of the DSLR Revolution that has swept the internet.
If you’re not, this video gives a great overall of DSLR video and why it’s so awesome. It should answer any questions you might have:
Just know that, if you don’t already have a camera, DSLR technology has opened doors for filmmakers and videographers that weren’t open before, making great looking images that stand-up well against professional standards.
And, before you ask; yes, you will get asked things from slightly concerned people like, “Why are you taking photos with a tripod?” I’m sure any owner of a DSLR who shoots video has experienced this before.
I’m also going to assume you have at least a basic technical know-how in operating cameras and basic filmmaking techniques.
There are plenty of other great resources out there that can give you technical training in filmmaking and video production technique. Feel free to message me using the Contact form on the site and I’d be more than happy to give you a list of my technical training recommendations for getting really good at this stuff.
If you’re looking for straight-up resources, then you can hop on over to the handy-dandy Resources page I’ve put together for you.
This course is going to focus on the business side of video and filmmaking. I’m going to give you frank and down-to-Earth information about making money with that camera of yours – whether it’s shoved up in the dark recesses of your attic, or sitting pride of place on your coffee table. It does make for great after-dinner conversations, though, doesn’t it?
HOW TO USE THESE GUIDES
As I mentioned earlier, I know a lot of people don’t read the introductions to books, but it’s really important that you read these intro notes, as it will help you get the best out of this course and maximize your success.
I know a lot of readers want something to sink their teeth into immediately and start getting results right away. That’s why I’ve included an easy to use step-by-step guide as a Quick Start section right after this introduction post.
This will get you up and running right away. Just follow the instructions to the letter, and you can start seeing your business form around you.
Exciting, isn’t it?
From there, I’ll go into more detail about each of the concepts in the Quick Start Guide and expand on everything later in the guides.
I know that when I’ve read books in the past, I find that re-reading parts (or all) of books has had a real benefit to me and my business. It might sound like a cliché, but you truly get something new each time you read it.
I’ve broken these guides into chunks of information so that you can learn things quickly and easily. This really is the guide I wish I had when I was starting out on my video business journey.
I’ve also made a point to space out the ideas for maximum emphasis. This better emphasizes ideas and gives you time to digest the information you’re taking in.
Throughout, you’ll find sections called ACTION STEPS. These are exactly as they sound – things to take action on. Do them. You won’t regret it.
Obviously, I can’t sit here and force you to do them, but you owe it to yourself to follow through and take action. As you’ll discover in this course, one of the biggest positives we can do for our business is to follow-through, implement new ideas and take action.
Nothing happens without action.
A WORD ON WORDS
At the start of this this guide, I should mention a couple of definitions. I assume the majority of my readers are coming into this with little or zero business knowledge.
Clients, Prospects, Customers – These words are used throughout and interchangeably. Clients are the people who you want to find and offer your video production services to.
Marketing – is what you’ll use to promote your services. This can come in the form of advertising, materials like flyers and websites, social media, etc. People often associate marketing with branding, and they are pretty closely linked. As an example, some well known brands out there are Nike’s swoosh logo, and Coca Cola’s vintage coke bottle design.
Sales – Selling is everything you do once you have attracted a prospective client with your marketing.
All sales strategies should lead to The Close (a way of making a sale of your video services).
So, for our purposes, Clients + Marketing + The Close = Sales.
With that cleared up, let’s begin with the Quick Start Guide.