5 Steps to Finding (and Closing) Video Production Jobs
Let’s take a look at the five steps to help you find — and more importantly close — jobs and clients for consistent work you can count on.
For everyone who’s ever worked in freelance or as part of a video production company knows, the constant chase and struggle of finding (and keeping) clients is truly endless. It can be a boom or bust industry, which means that even while work is flooding in you have to be on your game to make sure you’ll have leads ready for the lean months, too.
And while there are plenty of pieces of advice for how you can best position yourself in getting more work by networking, creating solid demo reels, and — you know — consistently doing good work, some of the biggest challenges in the video production world come from closing those connections and setting up jobs and clients for repeat business.
Here’s how to lock in your leads.
1. Make Yourself a Known Commodity
Yes, a part of this is networking and meeting people (and don’t get us wrong — networking is a very important part of the process of finding and developing leads). But, perhaps a more important part of the process is making yourself known as a commodity. Not just who you are, but what you do and how well you do it. If you operate in a specific film or video niche, for example, it’ll help if you’re known as a documentarian, or a run-and-gun guru, or the RED Dragon master.
2. Check in and Be Persistent
Once you have some connections and leads, it’s perfectly alright to be persistent in checking in and making yourself part of their business. Don’t pester. Look for social cues of being intrusive. But, for the most part, sending a text or email every week or so (or heck even a call, if you’re old school) is a great way to stay on your client’s radar, in case a need or problem might come up that you could fill or solve.
3. Do Research and Make Suggestions
Another great way to “close” clients and secure jobs is to do a lot of the research yourself. For many video professionals, the job these days isn’t so much as a day laborer providing a defined service, but more as a marketing consultant who’s there to work with a company in helping them grow their business, impress their own clients, or provide value.
If you’re focused on a specific industry (say the legal field, advertising agencies, real estate, etc.) you can and should do your own research. See what their competitors are doing with video. Look for some of the best, most successful examples of a project you’d like to pitch diving into, then provide some solid insights into how and why it would help your clients out.
4. Have Your Camera, Gear, and Team Ready
You also want to be ready for any opportunity the moment one pops up. This is a fast-paced industry, and for better or worse, it’s why a lot of veterans get burned out or simply move on to other, more consistent roles. The young and hungry will always be the ones to be the most successful, mostly due to their eagerness and responsiveness to opportunities.
If you’re operating solo, then having your gear organized, charged, and ready to go is a good way to start. But, even if you have a team (or have a group of friends who can help you assemble a crew in a hurry), having those contacts prepared will help you move whenever the ball is suddenly put into motion.
5. Don’t Stop After the First Project
Perhaps the biggest mistake that many freelance videographers make when working with clients is treating every project as a one-off job. There are no one-off jobs in the video world. If a client needs you or your company for one video, there will undoubtedly be more video needs in the future. At worst, it might be a yearly job if it’s for a specific event.
But more often than not, if you do a good job and your work gets results, there will most probably be more jobs for you in the future. It’s just up to you to stay engaged, communicative, and always ready and responsive for when that next opportunity presents itself.
Cover image by H_Ko.
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