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Advice for DVD Authoring advanced student run start-up

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Nikki1985
Advice for DVD Authoring advanced student run start-up
on Mar 17, 2006 at 1:05:54 am

I volunteered to help get a student-run DVD authoring and video editing company off the ground and I'm running into a few walls. Does some kind of DVD authoring expo where you can offer your services to potential clients exist? Since we're just a couple of college kids and we're not really sure how to go about telling people about our services (DVD authoring, filming, editing). Can anyone give me some advice as to what and where to go? I'm trying not to lose hope in all of our hard work. I'll travel anywhere if it means getting us a new client. Let me know about expos and how other people get clients!

Thanks,

Nikki


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Noah Kadner
Re: Advice for DVD Authoring advanced student run start-up
on Mar 17, 2006 at 2:43:27 am

Really depends where you are in the world and what apps you are planning to train on. Some, like Apple's DVD Studio Pro have an authorized training center network, courseware, etc.

Noah


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David Roth Weiss
Re: Advice for DVD Authoring advanced student run start-up
on Mar 17, 2006 at 11:06:03 pm

Nikki,

The age-old business question is: "We have goods and services for sale, how do we tell potential customers that we exist?"

Marketing is the answer, and there is a reason they teach marketing in business school in a four-year program, with an MBA program to follow. Its very hard work, and there's a lot to learn. Keep in mind, they call the it, "the film business," but, it should really be called, "the business of film," putting the emphasis were it belongs.

Until you get yoiur masters in marketing, try to see how others have sucessfully marketed their DVD biz, and try your best copy them.

DRW


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Aanarav Sareen
Re: Advice for DVD Authoring advanced student run start-up
on Mar 18, 2006 at 6:05:09 am

The basic fundamentals of marketing state that you satisfy customers for a profit. Guaranteed, you have a business and you can provide various services, but the more important question is: what do your customers want? If you are trying to sell your services in a college campus, look around and ask how many people want these services? A marketing decision does not come easily and it takes a LOT of time to research and then implement those decisions.


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David Roth Weiss
Re: Advice for DVD Authoring advanced student run start-up
on Mar 18, 2006 at 6:23:13 am

[Aanarav Sareen] "the more important question is: what do your customers want"

If they have no idea that you exist, what they want is meaningless.



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Aanarav Sareen
Re: Advice for DVD Authoring advanced student run start-up
on Mar 18, 2006 at 7:31:42 am

[David Roth Weiss] "If they have no idea that you exist, what they want is meaningless."

Good point. That is where research comes in.


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Nikki1985
Re: Advice for DVD Authoring advanced student run start-up
on Mar 19, 2006 at 12:03:13 am

Although some members have reached out a hand and given me some advice, no-one has answered my question:

Is there a conference or convention that showcases editing talents and or DVD authoring? Thats kind of what I'm after. I figured someone would know. IE: NAMM (north american music conference) is a convention for all things music-- new instruments, new software new anything. There has to be something like that for video services. Anyone? Bueller...


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eric
Re: Advice for DVD Authoring advanced student run start-up
by
on Mar 19, 2006 at 4:14:53 pm

There used to be a conference years ago up in Northern California but no more.

You could join the DVDA - thier conference and awards ceremony is coming in 2 weeks:

http://www.dvda.org/index.php


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David Roth Weiss
Re: Advice for DVD Authoring advanced student run start-up
on Mar 19, 2006 at 6:19:49 pm

[Nikki1985] "Although some members have reached out a hand and given me some advice, no-one has answered my question:"

If you want to put yourself in a setting with the largest number of video professionals and end users in the country, go to NAB in Las Vegas next month. But that isn't the answer. There is no magical place where customers are assembled in one place waiting for you, a new business startup to sell them DVD creation services, when anyone with a $500 computer can author DVDs.

In this time of democratized video, $5000 fees per hour episode for HD television programming, and $500 computers, what is it that you do that would make enough entities want to use your services so that you could actually build a business around it? Who are these entities? How do you reach them if they do exist? These are the questions you need to answer even if you do mange to find an entire convention center filled with prospective customers. Do you know the answers? This is marketing. It requires lots of right brain function, not the fun left brain stuff that most of us creatives are addicted to. It is the hard work that will enable you to build your dream, so quit looking for that magical "conference or convention that showcases editing talents and or DVD authoring," and get to work creating a marketing plan.

DRW




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Nikki1985
Re: Advice for DVD Authoring advanced student run start-up
on Mar 19, 2006 at 7:33:33 pm

DRW,

Thank you so much for the advice. I surely understand that there is no 'magical' way to break into this lucrative industry and that video editors are a dime-a-dozen. I suppose the first order of business is defining ourselves-- who we are, what we do, why we're unique and how much we charge. Then I suppose the next step I had thought of is to start doing discounted work-- some pro-bono resume building stuff. After we have a solid resume, a marketing plan with defined goals, then we will be able to tell people who we are and what we do. I suppose credibility is the biggest issue when dealing with a couple of 20/21 year olds so thank you for the advice. As I mentioned earlier, I have to write the marketing plan, something I have never done. Do you or does anyone have an example of a video based marketing plan I can use as a reference. Maybe an old draft of a business you decided not to persue but something that I can reference. The sba.gov resources are pretty meager when it comes to technologically-based marketing plans. Thanks so much. We all (4 girls and 2 guys) appriciate it!


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David Roth Weiss
Re: Advice for DVD Authoring advanced student run start-up
on Mar 19, 2006 at 8:13:06 pm

Excellent Nikki!!! I think you've got the idea. If I were you, I'd go to the business school at your college and enlist the help of a professor and his marketing students. Because marketing plans are not easy for most creative people it will certainly help you to have a very right brained team on your side. Biz schools often take on such projects in order to give their students experience in real-world applications of the things they are learning.

Good luck,
DRW


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Nikki1985
Re: Advice for DVD Authoring advanced student run start-up
on Mar 20, 2006 at 6:20:58 pm

David,


I discussed the ideas and objectives of launching our video editing company and we concluded a few things.

1. We are going to specialize in DVD Authoring.

2. We need a Sales Plan. By that I mean a marketing mix but mostly an objective of how to reach possible clients and tell them why we do things best, whether it is being more cost-effective or just better.

I did have one questions pertaining to the equipment we are using...

There is a member of our group here that swears by his Adobe premiere and Adobe Encore DVD. Is this decent software for doing the titles, menus etc? More specifically, why or why not should we consider using a different software program. We have both macs and pcs but Chris (stubborn guy) insists its the best. To me it looks pixelated and kind of limiting.

Before you answer, I want to thank you and the others that have replied to my post.I really appriciate people taking the time to help me out on my little endeavor! Thanks- Nikki


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David Roth Weiss
Re: Advice for DVD Authoring advanced student run start-up
on Mar 20, 2006 at 6:37:27 pm

Nikki,

You're very welcome.

Adobe makes very fine products, and because Encore is now fully integarted with the other products in its line, so its a good choice, especially if Premiere is going to be your editing platform. While not really as powerful as DVD Lab Pro, I'd guess that for 99% of the DVDs you'll create it will probably more than suffice. Its the ability to customize and script that you will find somewhat lacking in Encore by comparison, but most DVDs are really pretty simple, so you may well get away without a whole lot of scripting anyway.

GL,
DRW


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Aanarav Sareen
Re: Advice for DVD Authoring advanced student run start-up
on Mar 20, 2006 at 8:16:39 pm

[Nikki1985] "Is this decent software for doing the titles, menus etc?"

Encore is perhaps not the best software to create titles in. If you have some extra $$, get the Production Studio. YOu get ability to add animated menus with After Effects and the ability to create menus from scratch in Photoshop.


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