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Couple questions on Proposals/Estimates

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Rich Rubasch
Couple questions on Proposals/Estimates
on Oct 17, 2013 at 1:50:26 pm

Do you normally try to include an estimate for travel if you have solid airfare/mileage info or do you just leave it off and say it will be calculated after the shoot/travel dates? Do you mark up for travel costs or just charge some kind of producer fee for the admin time to wrangle it all?

Is anyone marking up outside labor costs like extra grips/PA's etc on shoots on final invoices? What percentage?

I know this is somewhat sensitive info but if you can share please do!

Rich Rubasch
Tilt Media Inc.
Video Production, Post, Studio Sound Stage
Founder/President/Editor/Designer/Animator
http://www.tiltmedia.com


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walter biscardi
Re: Couple questions on Proposals/Estimates
on Oct 17, 2013 at 2:14:58 pm

[Rich Rubasch] "Do you normally try to include an estimate for travel if you have solid airfare/mileage info or do you just leave it off and say it will be calculated after the shoot/travel dates?"

We will give an estimate only with something like "Client is responsible for all travel costs associated with this project. At this time we anticipate those costs will run between X and Y. Actual costs will be billed at the conclusion of Travel."


[Rich Rubasch] "Is anyone marking up outside labor costs like extra grips/PA's etc on shoots on final invoices? What percentage? "

Sometimes, depends on the client and what we anticipate the budget level will be. The 10% Production Fee is pretty standard on all our contracts.

Walter Biscardi, Jr.
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Rich Rubasch
Re: Couple questions on Proposals/Estimates
on Oct 17, 2013 at 7:43:53 pm

Hmmm...10% production fee...is that a markup on the entire production (including your own staff on the crew) that covers any admin or overhead, or just a 10% markup on the invoices you receive from outside crew?

Rich Rubasch
Tilt Media Inc.
Video Production, Post, Studio Sound Stage
Founder/President/Editor/Designer/Animator
http://www.tiltmedia.com


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Bill Davis
Re: Couple questions on Proposals/Estimates
on Oct 17, 2013 at 11:37:29 pm

Zillion ways to approach this.

My favorite is that on my Production Estimate the FIRST like in the Production Fee.

And I tell potential clients that it's the fee you're paying ME to know how to make all this work.

As I've written before, hardly anyone ever questions that fee. It's like them telling me I'm not worth paying.

That should be enough to keep your business healthy - keyed to the scope of work that the project entails.

And of course, if travel days mean you can't accept other work because you're traveling specifically on their project's behalf, then any smart client will compensate you for that time. Usually at half your standard day rate. An exception might be a travel day to and from a multi-day gig - when hopefully, the overall job money will be enough so that the travel days can be forgiven. Ticket costs and per-diem of any crew folks should be non-negotiable. Again, if as a principal, you're gonna make bigger bucks on the whole project, you can eat some of the the smaller travel stuff so you don't look like you're trying to nickel and dime things. But if a client ever expects you to travel, lodge and eat on your own dime THEN tries to grind you on your day rates - RUN away.

My 2 cents.

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Todd Terry
Re: Couple questions on Proposals/Estimates
on Oct 18, 2013 at 4:07:50 am

We mark things up, sure... probably most everything. We don't have a flat set 10% markup or anything.

Some things are marked up little or almost none... a few bucks or a percent or two. Others are marked up more... 100% or more (not many of those). The client never knows what we pay our vendors for a particular item... it's irrelevant and frankly none of their business. The only thing that matters is what we charge them... which we always think is fair.

One example, we used to charge clients for individual music tracks used. We payed the providers one amount, and charged our clients a bit more. Due to a new deal we have with one of the music publishing houses we use, we now pay them a flat yearly fee and consequently the tracks now cost us much less than they used to. We still charge the clients the same amount per track as before, though. The client doesn't need to know our inner goings-on and the fact that we have negotiated a better deal for ourselves.

This is pretty much the same view I have with those who are vendors to us... this was discussed in a previous thread in this forum. If I buy a roll of paper towels at the grocery store, I don't care how much the store had to pay their vendor, or what their markup or profit margin is. Don't care, and it's none of my business. I only care what they are charging me, and whether I think it's fair and a good deal.

Obviously, we try to make a profit, but without gouging clients. We're the most expensive game in town (we used to be the cheapest years ago... but times change), but we give clients a good value for their money... considering quality vs. cost.

T2

__________________________________
Todd Terry
Creative Director
Fantastic Plastic Entertainment, Inc.
fantasticplastic.com



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Patrick Ortman
Re: Couple questions on Proposals/Estimates
on Oct 24, 2013 at 3:52:19 pm

Smart stuff in this thread.

For us, it totally depends on the client.

We do always charge for travel, and like Walter said, often it's a note saying client will pay for it, and we think it'll be XXX-XXXX.

Standard day rate for travel days is 50%, too.

Nice and clean.

Sometimes the client insists it be included as part of our budget. Then we do some work and figure out it'll be about XXX, and then put in a contingency on top of that in case we're wrong.

As for 'marking up' your crew, etc., when I started out I did not mark up anyone or anything.

I damn near went out of business.

Now, we make sure we're paid for our time and expertise. We make sure there's a producer's fee in every project we produce (because as mentioned, you deserve to be paid for your work producing the thing!), and we make sure there's a profit in every project we do.

Sometimes that profit becomes its own little line item. A few clients appreciate that. Often, though, we're told to fold it into the estimate, and mark up every line item (such as crew). Either way's OK, as long as you do make sure you're making a profit. After all, we want to be around for our clients to work with in the future, right?

I shoot people.
http://www.patrickortman.com


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