Video Production Business Tips – Mistakes That Can Cause You to Lose Video Production Clients

In our video production business, we all make mistakes. It’s inevitable! However, some mistakes carry more weight than others and the heavy ones can ruin your video business. Finding and retaining clients is hard enough. This article identifies and discusses a few simple mistakes you should avoid making in the everyday process of running your video business.

1. Never write something in an email that you wouldn’t want forwarded in viral fashion to the entire world.

This might sound extreme but there are just several ways your emails can get in the wrong hands.

Interoffice emails get accidentally forwarded to clients. When you are managing several projects with hundreds or even thousands of emails between you and your clients, it’s very easy to accidentally forward the wrong emails to the wrong people. In my office, I have a zero tolerance rule when it comes to talking badly about a client via email. In fact, I fired an employee earlier this year for doing just that. Everyone gets frustrated at times with clients but you can’t let something as stupid as a rogue email be the reason you lose a client relationship forever.

Viruses can get into your email box and forward random messages to random people in your address book. THIS SUCKS! Mainly because you don’t want clients or competitors to see information they have no business seeing. However, the only way to make this worse is if these other people read emails that bash other people. You will lose credibility with clients and your competitors may try to figure out ways to use that information against you.

2. Be very careful what you talk about when cameras are rolling and microphones are hot.

It’s easy to get lost in conversation with your production assistant when you are out on a shoot but be careful what you talk about. We all have a way of speaking our mind when the client isn’t around and sometimes those thoughts get captured on tape. 99% of the time, we control all the editing and can edit the off-color comments out. However, the other 1% of the time can be what causes us to lose a client or to be majorly embarrassed. If a client requests a copy of the raw footage, everything you said on camera while the microphone was hot will be revealed when they watch the DVD. This is not good. Force yourself to hold your tongue when cameras are rolling.

The same goes for when you are working in a studio setting. Before and after takes, your talent (or client in many cases) may take a break to speak with people in the green room or control room. When you are tidying up the set, keep your mouth shut, unless it’s to talk about how wonderful the talent/client just performed. You never know where the audio is patched and you could very well cut your own throat if the microphones are hot and patched into the room where the client is.

3. Be cautious when renaming photo files when preparing them for a project.

When clients give you photo files that originated from a digital camera, a common practice is to rename the files in a fashion that makes them easily identifiable so you can save time when trying to locate material in the editing process. Early in my career, I used to name them all kinds of crazy things like “fat dude,” “short lady with bug eyes,” etc. just for fun. Well, it’s all fun and games until someone requests a disc with all the pictures on it after you have renamed them! Yes, that happened to me once and only once in my video production business career. Thankfully, the client who received the disc had a sense of humor and instead of firing me, asked me to rename the files again and burn to another disc. I gladly obliged.