Pricing video & photo package for half day(4-5 hours) or full day shoot (7-8 hours)
A restaurant owner approached me to put together a package for video & stills of his new restaurant. He wants me produce 365 stills & 365 video clips ranging from 5 - 60 sec clips. He says he wants a full media library for his social media channels. Enough content for him to post new content everyday to facebook, instagram, etc each day. So I will also need edit and deliver in social media required formats. A set of pics scaled for Instagram, facebook, twitter, pinterest & whatever other social media platform he wants.
He wants us in the kitchen recording food prep, images of ingredients, smiling faces of customers and staff, location pics, etc
1. Is it even possible to get that much content in a 4-5 hour shoot or even day (6-8 hours) or will this have to be multiple visits thus a higher rate.
2. I am a bit lost on how to price this. (I work in a non-union state.)
I have a team of two videographers & two photographers.
I will do edits.
3. How much are you all pricing the editing aspect for stills & video?
I guess this type of package would be more inline of a wedding video & still package.
Any help would be great.
I won't even begin to price that, as it would take a little bit have time to work up a reasonably accurate budget for that (and am out directing on location at the moment). But I will say this, after having done a fair bit of restaurant shooting, to do it right that is nowhere near only four hours. I would say a multiple-day shoot at a minimum.
Also remember, that food is one of the hardest things to photograph really well. You'll definitely want to budget for a food stylist, and a fair bit more time than you're probably used to shooting other inanimate objects... I always found food shooting (or any scene that even just contains food, such as a dinner scene) to be such sloooow going.
Fantastic Plastic Entertainment, Inc.
In addition to what Todd says, the entire concept of pre-shooting a year's worth of daily shots for "social media" feeds is ridiculous because social media demands an immediacy and context the "canned" stuff can't deliver. Does this guy serve his customers pre-packed pasta, or does he make it himself? The whole thing will quickly fall apart in a week's time, when facebook and other watchers notice the clothes, hairstyles, and other features on the people never change or evolve. Then they'll be angry you tried to fool them - the result is horrible bad publicity.
Instead, I would propose you set up a live webcam, updating every five minutes, centered on a small area the size of a plate, and the chef plates up one of the daily specials and lays it out under the camera/heatlamp for an hour or two. Even easier, place the camera on the area where the waitstaff picks up the orders, and the view of what people are ordering becomes an ever-changing display from minute to minute. You could brand it: "what folks are having here right now!" or something like that. It would keep the cooks on their toes making sure the presentation quality and portion sizes were always consistent.
I agree with you on the potential downfall of his plan. Perhaps having some evergreen content to mix in the middle of his existing social media would be a good idea. Perhaps enough content for him to mix in once or twice a week surrounded by his day to day postings.
The live cam feed is interesting as well. I am going to pitch it to him. How would I price that? Im sure it can be done with a cheap go pro with wifi. I have a tech guy to handle the posting and such.
Thanks for the advice!
You charge hourly time and materials to set up the camera, a nice dedicated light for it, and any coding you need to feed it from a server in the camera to the facebook page or whatever.
Tell him to think of it functioning like the rotating cabinet near the Maitre'd station or cashier station, that shows off cakes, pies, and other desserts - only it's showing off hot entrees in real time, close-up like when people instagram what they're having. You could store a couple of "perfect" examples as image files and rotate them in when the feed is off, overnight, or on closed days.
Thanks for the advice. I did not even consider the difficulty and color correction aspects of shooting food. Perhaps I can pitch him on cutting the content request back. Perhaps break it down into packages like: 50 clips & pics - $$$, 75 clips - $$$$ 100 clips - $$$$, etc...
50 clips & pics will take 1 day, 75 - 2 days, etc.
Shots can be evergreen so he can reuse them throughout the years. Perhaps he can agreed to let me keep the license and I can sell them on a stock site lol
I have had requests like this and there really isn't any way you can figure out how much of a time suck it will be. If this was a restaurant chain it would be worthwhile, but if it's just one client who owns one restaurant, then I would run because the budget will never be worth it and they will require more hand holding. That owner will be too attached to his baby. With food, if you don't do it right, you're in a Lose/Lose position because the owner and his chef won't like the way it looks, so beware of food clients.
The first question I would ask is: The 360 shots, will the place be empty or full? That in and of itself is a can of worms because as you set up in the middle of the restaurant some people will not want to be shot. Kids will purposely pick their nose to ruin your shot, I would too if I was 8. Some prominent tables and booths are empty. Even beautiful people look like cows when they're eating. Often with hospitality industry shots, the man is not with his (real) wife, if you know what I mean, but I digress...
The request for a lot of clips to roll out for future social media posts, that is usually the request of someone who is trying to up their SEO, because Google rewards content additions, so it sounds like he has an SEO advisor? I'd ask and try to interface directly with that person because all he may need are a zillion 15-30 second blurbs of different "evergreen" topics. When I have B2C clients like this who want these little videos, they usually care nothing about production values and learn how to DIY for quick uploads once they figure out a pro is too expensive. For example, if there's a bday party in the restaurant they can easily shoot and post to social sites that night and even though it looks poor, Google will reward him with better search results. I lost a major theme park client who now has interns doing precisely that type of quick shoot, fast uploads, just for SEO. It's all about the quantity of video posts rather than the quality of content. I learned this by shooting for SEO agencies and consultants and when I am slow I market to them.
You mentioned live feeds. I have done many cooking shows and shot two seasons of Dining Chicago, and if a raw steak falls to the floor, the cook will pick it up and brush it off. The public doesn't want to see that. Also, employees absolutely hate to be 24/7 on camera so I don't know how that would go over. Security cameras are one thing, but a live feed of back of the house, eeeesh. Good luck with that. I doubt if he would want a live feed of the dining area because he'd shoot himself in the foot on slow nights with it looking empty. So to me, a live feed doesn't make sense unless it's a sports bar also and there's playoffs?
As for a half day rate, this type of gig is so deep I would not consider it. You have to train this client, assuming you still want to pursue it, that with the amount of prep you have to do and what the above posters stated, this is a FULL 10 hour day plus some OT. Food takes time to cook and often when it first comes out it has to be re-done, so a schedule on a shoot day like this is based on wishful thinking because as a producer you have no control of the cooking. That's why there's food stylists, to make it look better than it is. In fact, I would avoid committing to doing beauty shots of his meals, farm it out to someone on another day, when there is control, time and use of finese lighting. If I HAD to do those beauty shots I would prefer to do those, with a turntable, when the restaurant is closed and they cook each meal for my camera. Otherwise, get ready for a complaining client.
I personally would outsource the stills because the day you go in to do the important videotaping you'll be too busy for stills. With stills, food has to look perfect which takes finessing. Video is more forgiving. I have been producing for a fast casual chain that has a fun motif and was recently bought out for $1 billion, so dogs, brats and burgers don't need to be finessed, my life is easier than if I tried to please one owner with one restaurant who knows nothing about video except that a SEO consultant told him he needs a zillion videos.
In sum, I would tell this owner I would come in and do the important, must have, high quality, videotaping for one full day (of 10 hours), more of a home page high quality video, with controllable, pretty people (his friends and family) posing as diners. And then in a separate estimate I would outsource, shooting on other days, to my (cheaper) associates the 360 shoot, stills and the smaller social media videos to maximize SEO for a mark up. Otherwise, this type of client will monopolize so much of your time it will take away from your bigger, better paying clients. This type of small biz owner, and that is what a restaurant is, will consider you his "24/7 Video Guy" because he will always have more little videos to do, you'd be getting on his treadmill. This is more of a time suck than a highly profitable endeavor based on my experience with restaurant owners, unless he's an eccentric billionaire. And indie restaurant owners always have cash flow problems, always, so getting paid timely is an issue.
That's my .02¢
P.S. Before I even would spend a couple of hours trying to estimate this, I'd ask him what he was "planning to invest for these video marketing efforts"? My experience is that they will be too cheap to make it worthwhile, unless this is a regional or national chain, so knowing that upfront saves you the time to do such an intricate, moving parts, estimate.
Ned makes a lot of good points.
I completely forgot that I had a would-be client ask about something very very similar to this a year or so ago.
Within a block of our studio is a small restaurant. It's a decent place, and we've used it as a shooting location a time or two.
Well, the lady who owns the place walked over one day, asking about a production job. They wanted to put a big-screen monitor in their adjacent extra dining room, with all kinds of videos about the restaurant, featuring different specials, all kinds of food videos, highlights of special events that have happened there... and she thought a new batch of videos every Friday would be a good idea.
I listened, but the whole time I kept thinking "She has no clue how much production work this would be."
THEN... she let me know the real reason she wanted these, and I had to suppress a bit of internal chuckling: They already had the monitor for some reason, and it was sitting in storage doing nothing. She said "This was an expensive TV, over $500, and I hate for it to go to waste!"
I didn't quite have the heart to tell her she was talking about production probably 50 or 100 times what her TV cost, and maybe much more than that.
Fortunately she caught me just as we were walking out heading to a shoot, and said she would come back another time (and we haven't seen her again).
I think the point of that too-long story is, pursue this job if your potential client really understands how much they are asking for (which is a great great deal), knows how much it might cost (which would be a lot), has very deep pockets and isn't afraid to spend.
But knowing how most restaurants operate, that's probably not the case. You might be best served pitching them one of the more realistic ideas that have been popping up in this thread.
Fantastic Plastic Entertainment, Inc.
Also, you're breaking a Cardinal Rule. My mentor taught me there are two types of clients:
• Those that are using their own money.
• Those that are using the company's money.
You will always have larger budgets, greater profit, with the latter. A restaurant owner will be cheaper than a marketing exec at a chain restaurant company. Also, by definition, all small biz owners will be excellent negotiators, placing you at a disadvantage. I cringe when I get contacted by a prospect spending their own dime, I LOVE those at a larger organization. The indie client has to save money, which goes against our need to make a profit.
Do some simple math. Let's say you can even produce one minute of video plus the associated stills for the social channels for $100. That is 60 seconds of finished and approved video, encoded to spec and delivered.
For 365 of those you would be charging $36,500. Which seems about right. But then that would also assume that you would be shooting on multiple days and that the finals would be of reasonable quality.
Let's switch it around and say you were to charge him even $10,000 for the job to deliver the 365 videos plus stills etc. divide that by 365 and you now will be paid $27.39 per video.
No thanks. Plus I'll bet if you told him you would charge $10,000 he would say you were nuts. But then you would tell him that you are only charging $27.39 per video plus stills delivered. Except you can't make your Obamacare payments on that, so, no, $40,000 sounds about right!
Tilt Media Inc.
Video Production, Post, Studio Sound Stage
Rich's math seems about right to me.
I didn't do any actual calculating, but when I first read the original post my initial "hunch estimate" (and my hunches tend to be at least in the ballpark) was something in the $40-50K range.
I've never run across any locally-owned restaurants that were willing (or able) to throw that kind of cash just into social media marketing... like Rich said they the average biz would probably choke at even $10K, which would be a major loss for you. If they did have that kind of an advertising budget to throw around, I would certainly try to steer them into something else which would be more impactful.
Hopefully you can pitch something different that retains the client, does useful advertising for them, and still makes you money.
Fantastic Plastic Entertainment, Inc.
In terms he might understand...
He's thinking "I need to bring in a decent cook for a day" and then get him to plan out my next year of menus.
To get close to that, he doesn't need a cook - he needs a highly skilled Chef - and to pay said Chef enough so that that he or she can map out and plan a YEAR of daily unique meals along with instructions on how to prep for, prepare and serve each one.
It's beyond silly.
The reason you hire a top Chef is so that they can tell YOU how many unique Entrees your restaurant needs based on experience , market, and practice - the side dishes necessary to properly go with them - how often items on the menu must change to keep things fresh.
That the restaurant owner is trying to specify all this is a HUGE red flag.
Tell him you think he needs 365 different and unique entrees and deserts so that HIS contribution to your videos can change every day of the next year TOO! ... and see what he thinks of that.
Creator of XinTwo - http://www.xintwo.com
The shortest path to FCP X mastery.
There's a fundamental issue going on here that we, unfortunately, see almost every day in our business.
Even after a quarter century of being an ad guy, I don't know why but it still baffles me that everyone, yes virtually everyone, thinks that they are an expert in advertising.
You'll have people that would never dream of telling their electrician how to re-wire their house, their surgeon to remove their appendix, their mechanic how to fix their car, or their dentist how to perform a root canal. Yet these same people have no problem hiring an advertising or marketing expert and then telling them exactly what they know is the best way for their business to be marketed.
I've yet to figure this out.
We are blessed that we have many clients who trust us to tell them what they need to do to effectively market their businesses. But we also have some that insist we do things that we absolutely know aren't the best way to promote them (in fact sometimes it's quite detrimental). We do try to educate these people, but with some it's like talking to a brick wall. We had one problem-child client who kept hiring us for revisions to his campaign, with every change being a suggestion of his mother (and this client was a late middle-aged man). And I've seen more political campaigns derailed by a candidate's spouse than anything else. Why a potential U.S. congressman thinks his Junior-League stay-at-home wife knows more about running a race than his professional political campaign advisors do is beyond me, but it happens all the time. With exactly the results you'd expect.
The OP's client might be a good restaurateur, and lucky for him that he is an ad genius as well, knowing that he needs 365 different videos to promote his eatery. Which is of course, completely asinine. The options there are only to talk him into something more sensible, walk away, or take the money and run. But in most of those cases there's not enough to run away with.
Fantastic Plastic Entertainment, Inc.