Video Production Business Tips – Migrating From Broadcast Employee to Full-Time Entrepreneur

Are you a full-time broadcast professional waiting for the perfect moment to strike out on your own?

If you’ve been in the broadcast industry for any length of time, you know a lot of people in and around the business. Plus, you’ve probably done freelance jobs for other businesses or have friends who have. If you are looking to strike out on your own, how can you leverage these contacts? How can you immediately turn these relationships into cash for your new video production business?

Here are some suggestions on what you can do before stepping out on your own:

1. Look into your employer’s freelance policy.

If they allow you to freelance, start making plans to look for extra video production work on the side. This will enable you to make extra money that can be invested in your video business or saved so you’ll have access to cash after you quit your full-time job.

Another benefit to working as a freelancer now is that you’ll make valuable contacts that will result in additional work down the road. The point here is to get as many freelance clients as possible on your list before quitting your full-time job. The more clients you have, the easier it will be to transition from your job to running your own video production business.

2. Assuming your employer allows freelancing, talk to as many people as possible about the video production services you provide on the side and ask them to send any video work they hear about your way.

I’m sure you’ve experienced on many occasions people asking if you can do a video project for them just because they know you work in the industry. When asked these questions, you probably either tell them that you can’t help them or you refer them to a friend or colleague that you know of who can help them.

Your goal is to make sure that every contact you have in the industry knows you provide these video production services on the side and that you’d appreciate their referrals. You can even offer commissions for paying work that they send to you.

3. Once you get a steady stream of freelance work and video projects that are referred to you from friends and colleagues, it will be time to see if there are any possibilities to contract with your current employer.

You must be ready to strike out on your own before having this conversation with your boss. In many cases, telling your employer what your plans are won’t result in any work for your new video production business.

However, I’ve known several people who have been able to secure lucrative short-term contracts with their previous employers because the employer still needed or wanted their services.

Remember these three steps to striking out on your own. They will definitely help you pursue your dream of making your own video production business.

The Information Product Business – Time to Stick it to the Man and Make Money

If you want to get into the world of information products, now is better than ever. We are turning the corner from the printed word to the digital world, and the market for information products just gets bigger every year. Read on to find out how you can get your feet wet and start selling info-products.

The biggest advantage of owning an information business is the flexibility it offers. Your business will operate 24 hours a day from anywhere in the world. If you want to update your product, you don’t have to worry about manufacturing issues, all you have to do is change a few words and click a few buttons.

You can start an information product business for free. There are not a lot of businesses out there where this is possible. Literally anyone that has a desire to own their own business can start from nothing and slowly develop an information empire. You will not get rich off of a single product. It’s about creating a family of products with a solid revenue pipeline. Not everything that you create will turn into gold, but once you develop your own style and figure out what you customers are looking for, you can get to a high rate of success.

Your information product will solve a problem that no one else has thought of before. You do not have to reinvent a new market, just improve on a current process by 10%. If your customer niche is large enough, you will start to develop a following of your own. Once you build your own list, you will be able to sell to these customers over and over, providing them with the goods that they want.

You will also learn how to add value to your information product, where you can create audio and video as well, in order to boost the price of your product without having to do a lot of additional work. There are many forms that an information product can take, and by playing around with different styles and delivery methods, you will be able to find the best way to convey exactly the right delivery route to your customers.

If you enter the world of information sales, it is not an easy route like many gurus claim it to be. However, every information empire is started by one product at a time and as you create more content that people are interested in, the more money you will make and the closer you will get to financial freedom.

Video Production Business Tips – Why Your Sales Projections Should Come From Reflections

In the long years of being in a video production business, I realized that everyone wants projections from you. The only problem is that you don’t have a crystal ball and it would be foolish to pretend that you know what’s going to happen in 3 months, a year and especially 3 years. After several years of failed attempts at predicting what future sales would be for our video production business, my wife and I decided to reflect on previous years instead.

My talent is making the money whereas her talent is keeping the money. We make a great team! As it turned out, all the interested parties I listed above were much happier with our projections once we started basing them on averages of previous year’s sales. How do we do this?

It’s really quite simple to use this method for projecting future sales if you have been in the video production business at least 2 years. Write down what you sold in each month of year one and in each month of year two. Then, average the numbers for each month.

The sales average for each month is your projected sales number for the upcoming year. For instance, if you did $10,000 in November of 2008 and $8,000 in November of 2009, the average of those two numbers is $9,000. This is what you should project for sales to be in November 2010. This is a very conservative projection and your bankers and investors will appreciate that. Plus, this gives you a realistic view of what your business should and most likely will do in sales each month in the coming year.

To get a picture of what your entire year will look like, repeat the exercise above for each month. Your total sales for the year should equal the average of the previous two year’s sales. In theory, all you’ll have to do to meet these numbers is keep doing what you’ve always done. You can follow the same level of product and customer service; make the same or similar volume of repeat orders and new orders, and the assumption that there won’t be any major changes in the economy.

The question now is, “Are you happy with those numbers?” If so, great! You can continue to do what you love best and feel good about what the next year will bring. If not, you’ll need to look at how and where you can improve your video production business to increase your revenues. In this case, I’d suggest smaller, incremental changes each year instead of a complete overhaul. Complete overhauls take a lot of your time and will cost quite a bit of money.

Talk to your mentors about these numbers. I’m assuming you have several mentors you consult with on a regular basis. Ask for their help in analyzing your numbers and for ideas on how to improve them.

Finally, remember that the only number more important than how much you sell is the number that reflects how much you keep. You need to be very aggressive is guarding your expenses because even if your video production business only experiences single digit percentage growth each year, you’ll continue to get wealthier and wealthier.

Video Production Business Tip – Marketing Sales Funnel

If you are a student of marketing, you probably know what a “sales funnel” is. If you have no idea what I’m talking about, it’s basically the business system you put in place that illustrates how you will attract new prospects and the path they take once they enter your “funnel” until they become a paying customer at the bottom.

Instead of labeling it as a “sales funnel,” I prefer to call it the “success funnel” mainly because the success of my video production business is determined by the effectiveness of this process.

At the top of the funnel, I have networking, video marketing, social media and emails. These are the tools that I use to get prospects into my funnel so that I can eventually move them down the line to become a paying customer. The reason the funnel is in the shape of an upside down triangle is because you’ll have a lot of prospects who enter your funnel but will never become video production customers.

I won’t use this post to go over the merits of networking, video marketing, social media marketing or email marketing but just know that I believe all four of these tools are vital to bringing prospects into my success funnel.

The next section of the funnel is labeled “Drive Traffic to Website.” I believe that if I can get prospects to visit my website, they will see within a few seconds or minutes why I am qualified to handle their video project. My website does a great job of selling a prospect on my quality, capabilities and credibility so it’s by far my greatest marketing tool. (I’m not saying it’s a perfect website, just that it’s very effective.)

The main marketing goal of the website is to get an interested prospect to do one of three things.

1.) Sign up for my email newsletter so I can stay in touch with them over a long period of time.

2.) Fill out the contact form if they want/need to request a quote for a video production.

3.) Call me directly if they want to request a quote for a video production.

I get a handful of inquiries each week through my website so I know it’s doing its job. In order to get more inquiries, I’d need to be more aggressive in the first section of the funnel by networking more, posting more videos online, interacting via social media more often and by building a larger email list that I can stay in touch with on a regular basis.

The next stage in the success funnel is labeled “Prospect Requests Quote.”

If the first stage is getting leads into my funnel and the second stage is working to get prospects to look at my website, there should be plenty of people emailing or calling to request a quote. If there aren’t a lot of requests at any point in time, I need to analyze where the problem is higher up in the funnel.

Do I need more leads or do I need to tweak something on my website so that more of my leads will request a quote

Once a prospect has requested a quote, this is where you can make or break the deal based on how you write the proposal.

Writing a solid proposal will increase the number of deals you close but no matter how good they are, you’ll be lucky if you win more than 50% of the deals you quote.

If I’m getting plenty of quote requests but haven’t been closing enough deals, I know that I need to examine my pricing and/or the quality of prospect I’m bringing into my funnel.

So, if I bring 100 leads into the first stage of the funnel. Thirty of them go to my website, 10 of them request a quote and only 3 of them hire me for their project. I know there are a few things I can work on to improve my results.

The first thing I would look at is how to close more of the 10 quotes. I might try to reduce my pricing a bit over the next month or so until I get fully booked. If after reducing my pricing a bit, I realize that I’m still not closing more deals, I know that it’s time to look higher up in the funnel at the quality of prospect I’m attracting or the information I’m providing on my website.

Since I’m pretty confident that my website is doing its job, I would make the assumption that my success (or lack of) is directly related to the quality of lead I’m attracting with my current marketing efforts. After careful analysis, I might notice that a lot of my leads lately have been from smaller businesses or non-profit organizations instead of medium to large corporations – which is what I prefer.

With that in mind, I may change up where I’m networking or the kind of prospect I’m targeting with my social media efforts so that I can start bringing in more prospects who can afford my normal prices and who won’t be scared off by my proposals.