It doesn’t matter if you’re just getting started with video or if you’re a full-blown, card-carrying, Kool-Aid™ drinking member of the video marketing club, the question will invariably come up:
“Should I be doing this in-house, or should I outsource?”
Of course, the answer to that question, like so many others, is: it depends.
There are many factors that go into making the decision on how to source your video production, so let’s look at some of the pros and cons of each to help guide you.
There are a large number of video production companies out there (ahem), in all shapes and sizes (and prices), from small shops to multinational production companies. This is probably the approach to go with if you’re looking for a “one-stop shop” or turn-key solution. Here are some reasons why outsourcing makes sense.
- Experience – This is WHAT THEY DO. All day, every day. They plan, direct, shoot, edit, and process video like it’s their job. Because, well, it is.
- Latest and greatest – Since they do this all the time, they’re up-to-date on the latest hardware and software and production techniques. In fact, they have to be in order to stay competitive.
- Time Saver – It’s no secret that video production can be a major time suck. It takes years to craft visual storytelling and production skills, and even then, each project can feel like a recreation of Apocalypse Now. From hours spent wrangling footage, to putting it all together in the final edit. If you value free time, then it might be best to let the pros do the heavy lifting.
- Competing priorities – Most sought after video producers will likely have other client projects that they are working with at the same time as yours. So if you’re looking for a monogamous relationship, you may prefer an internal team.
- Cost – Depending on the size of your project, hiring an experienced video production firm can be a serious investment.
- Consistency – This only applies if you’re using different vendors for each video project, but you could struggle with the consistency of quality and tone across your videos. In addition, hiring a different vendor for each project could also increase ramp-up time.
More and more, companies who have fully embraced video are bringing their production in-house. From large companies like JetBlue to magazine brands like Men’s Health. Even mom-and-pops are getting in on the game. Is shooting and producing your own video content right for you?
- Dedicated – If your current video production partners can’t keep up with your video needs, it may be best to hire dedicated resources that can be solely devoted to your needs.
- Consistency – Once your team is in place, you can establish SOP’s and style guidelines to ensure your video content aligns with your company culture and values.
- Flexibility – Having everything in-house means you have greater control and flexibility over the process and workflow and, as a result, the final product.
- Availability – It is more difficult to scale your internal team up and down depending on your video production needs, so proper resource planning is essential.
- Cost – Not only in equipment and software licenses, but salaries and benefits need to be considered when hiring an in-house video team.
- Creativity – After a while, lacking outside perspective or direction, ideas could end up repetitious and overused.
Choose, or choose not
In most situations, you don’t have to choose between outsourcing and bringing things in-house. There’s no reason you can’t build an in-house team for your day-to-day video needs while also hiring an outside vendor for larger video initiatives.
Different situations call for different blends of this hybrid approach. You just need to make sure that your approach is aligned with your goals and budget.