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The Dos and Don’ts of Hiring a Video Production Crew

The Dos and Don’ts of Hiring a Video Production Crew 500 331 Heidi McLean

You’re organizing a video project, and your next step is to find the right video production crew to bring your vision to life. But how do you find a crew? From expectations and experience to budget and timeline, we’ve put together a list of tips for hiring a video production crew.

DO vet the crews

When looking for the right video production crew for your project, past experience is a huge selling (or non-selling) point. If the crews you’re considering have a portfolio of work, take some time to go through each project. Listen to the sound carefully, pay attention to transitions, and rate the overall project. This will help you compare and contrast crews you’re interviewing.

DON’T book a crew without experience

You might have a project with a small budget, but that doesn’t mean you have to temper your expectations in order to find the right crew. As always, do you due diligence and fully vet crews until you find the right one. The quality of work can and should be high enough for your needs.

DO pay what the project is worth

As you decide on the budget for your project’s video production crew, keep in mind that you want to pay what the project is worth to you. If this project will represent your company and potentially bring in sales, the quality needs to be high. If this project will be available for the world to view, you want to make sure the outcome won’t embarrass you. Put a hefty budget toward your crew, and your project could bring in a high ROI.

DON’T wait until the last minute to hire

Unless you’re organizing a project with a quick turnaround, you don’t need to rush the process of hiring a crew. Much like hiring a qualified employee to come work at your company, hiring a crew for your project can take time. You’ll want to make sure their experience, availability, and understanding of your project are in line with your expectations before a contract is signed.

DO use a reputable crewing agency

Hiring the right crew might seem daunting. You might not have enough time to search for video production crews online, and you likely have other tasks to complete to support the project. In comes Crew Connection. Think of us as your personal matchmaker for bringing your project and the right crew together.

We assess your project’s needs including your timeline, the location (domestic or international), the needs of the project, and your budget. We then search through our database of qualified crews and deliver them to your inbox. Crew Connection has Audio Techs, Video Photographers, Field Producers, Post-Production, Drone Operators and much more. All of our crews have been fully vetted based on a variety of stringent qualifications. From there, you can get to know your top crew selections and decide which one is right for you.

Learn more about Crew Connection, and let us match you with the right crew for your project!

data notebook | Crew Connection

Future corporate communications & video production

Future corporate communications & video production 6048 4032 Heidi McLean

By Trishna Mitra, Digital Marketing Specialist at Abernethy Media Professionals


What if I told you that by 2019, 80 percent of internet traffic will be video traffic? And no, I don’t mean just cat videos or viral memes, like Chewbacca mom. I’m talking about corporate communications. Over the past few years, we’ve seen a trend in content consumption that is increasingly favoring video over other types of mediums. You’ve probably already noticed the changes and seen the facts, so I’m not here to convince you of that. Rather, I want to share how to overcome the daunting prospect of moving toward a primarily video communication strategy for your company.

Abernethy Media Professionals (also known as AMP) has been in the video production business for the past fifteen years. Our work includes project management, production, post, or any combination of the three. That’s why we don’t believe in the “standard job” when it comes to planning a good video. Over the last decade and a half, we’ve learned that when it comes to creating video, flexibility and adaptability are the names of the game. As things change for our clients, we must pivot quickly and meet them where they are. As a result, we’ve created agile processes to help our clients plan ahead and keep up with the growing, constantly changing demands of video production. Today, we’re sharing those not-so-top-secret processes with you!


Plan ahead to: Create footage with longevity

Make the most of the production day. This is the most important thing you can do to prepare for video communications. Especially when it comes to online content, it can feel like things become irrelevant pretty quickly. So, create content that is evergreen, shoot multiple versions of your video that you can steadily release over time, and get visual assets (like stills and b-roll) that can be reused in newsletters, across the website, and in other videos. All it takes is a little forethought during pre-production to plan how you want to make the most out of your video and content.


Plan ahead to: Use your budget wisely

Or, as we like to call it, “managing expectations.” You want the look of a professional video, but you don’t have the budget for it. Or perhaps you’ve come up with the creative and now need a crew to execute it, just to find that you don’t have the budget to get everything PLUS the lighting you need to get the look you want.

Quality video production comes at a cost, so it is tempting to turn to the film school student looking to add to his resume. However, when you go with an experienced crew, you’re getting quality, reliability, and professionalism. And that can save you hours onset and the costs of reshoots if things go awry.


Plan ahead to: Allow for logistical constraints

It’s time for a CEO address. Top leadership will all be around to shoot an internal company video for employees across the country. Flights are booked, the crew is assembled, and you’re ready to go. And then at the last minute, the CEO cancels because something’s come up. Now what? Coordinating schedules can be difficult at best, which is why we recommend incorporating some flexibility into your planning process. Think about possible alternative solutions during pre-production so you’re prepared for whatever might come down the pipeline. AMP’s team of experienced professionals can provide the gear, the crew, and the support to help you as your needs change.


About Abernethy Media Professionals

The future of corporate communications: Keeping up with video production

Abernethy Media Professionals is a full-service video production company. AMP’s Camera Crew division offers production support across the Southwest and Pacific Northwest areas. We provide the right crews, equipment, and expertise for your shoot. Our Creative Services team provides a script to screen production support, and our experienced producers partner with agencies and in-house corporate communications representatives on digital media projects across the country.


Realscreen summit | Crew Connection

Thoughts from the 2017 Realscreen Summit

Thoughts from the 2017 Realscreen Summit 1024 768 Crew Connection

Crew Connection Manager Ashley LaRocque attended the 18th annual Realscreen Summit in Washington, D.C., in early 2017. Here we distilled all the goodness from the people she met and things she learned into one easy-to-digest article just for our readers! Enjoy.


Crew Connection: What was your favorite session or speaker?

Ashley LaRocque: Jay Hunt, the Chief Creative Officer for Channel 4. She was candid, funny, and brought a whole new perspective on how to encourage innovation in the developing world that not only applies to managers in any industry but breaks barriers in the broadcast world. She encouraged an environment of fearless brainstorming where higher-ups exude support to pitch ideas that may fail at first but thrive in the long run. Channel 4 executive development is in the trenches with their developers and it has paid off with a progressive programming lineup that has catapulted Channel 4 to the front of European television.


CC: What was the coolest new technology, tool, and/or production idea you saw?

AR: There was a huge emphasis on mobile technology for shooting broadcast. There were a few keynote speakers in the adventure television industry that shoot solely on mobile phones, particularly the Samsung Galaxy. While that isn’t “new” technology, knowing that you can send someone out to remote locations with just a phone and make a show from it—that could really change the future of television and where the footage comes from, as well as how experienced the cam ops really need to be.

Sony also had a table set up with a new 4K and 6K camera demos. That’s certainly not “new,” but it was one of the few hands-on gear demos.


CC: What surprised you the most during the conference?  

AR: The openness of execs to make connections with producers. In many small sessions, execs of networks like Discovery and Nat Geo encouraged us to contact them directly, stay in touch, and even bug them if necessary! While most of the conference was geared towards independent producers pitching show ideas, the open and encouraging mentality of these VPs and SVPs really gave the delegates a feeling of support. All ideas were strongly welcomed—since those ideas are the future of the industry.


Thoughts from the 2017 Realscreen Summit

Ashley poses with one of our full-service video and post-production crews, JSS Productions, based near D.C.


CC: What is the number one thing you’ll remember from the conference?

AR: The number of show ideas that flow through these companies. They receive thousands of pitches a day. What I drew from that was how much more beneficial a service like Crew Connection would be for companies. Even though the VPs and SVPs who field pitches don’t actually organize video and post-production crews themselves, it gives great insight into how busy they are and how we could take a huge element of logistics off of their plate—or off their production manager’s and/or coordinators. 


CC: What advice would you pass on to those who couldn’t attend the conference?

AR: Get out there and talk to people. Don’t be afraid to go straight to the source—straight to the woman in charge. They are human too and appreciate a good story regardless of your approach.  That doesn’t necessarily mean you need to go to conference after conference, but reach out and just ask to be heard.  Most execs respect that directness. Even if you don’t have immediate success with your idea, you’ve at least made a new contact you can reach out to again in the future. Your connections are what you make of them.


CC: What was the most fun thing you did outside of the conference while in D.C.?

AR: Unfortunately, I didn’t have much time for sightseeing. The conference was all day and evening. However, I did hit an awesome local sushi spot called Momiji in Chinatown. It was in a basement and definitely didn’t look like much, but it had some incredible sushi. On my way out of town, I saw Marine 1 (now I think called Executive 1—the President’s helicopter) flying in.


About Crew Connection

Crew Connection logo

Crew Connection puts a suite of marketing tools at your fingertips. Get your demo reels, stills, gear, awards, and more in front of the biggest clients all over the world—for free. At Crew Connection we pay video and post-production providers within 30 days of receiving your invoice so your work and your life are never interrupted. Need live assistance or want to add quality jobs to your pipeline? Our crew coordinators are on call around the clock. Sign In to Crew Connection, call 303-526-4900, or email info@crewconnection.com.

production set | Crew Connection

What the smallest productions can learn from the biggest

What the smallest productions can learn from the biggest 610 379 Crew Connection

Gear failures, budget busters, scheduling snafus—video productions are rife with opportunities for things to go wrong. Whether you’re putting together your first small shoot or the 100th episode of a major television program, some scheduling and budgeting tricks can make any production smoother. We asked Crew Connection Manager Ashley LaRocque—formerly a post supervisor for network TV—to share some simple but hard-earned wisdom on ways to save time, money, and headaches.

Three lesser-known tips to save headaches when budgeting and scheduling your next big project:


1. Budget extra money and time for working across time zones

Technology is a great way to bring people together across multiple time zones for meetings. But, for daily production and post-production details, it still only goes so far. Even in the digital age, the most reliable way to transfer footage is still on physical hard drives. Packaging, insuring, and shipping costs money. Lots of money. LaRocque once worked on a show that filmed in Australia. Having post-production halfway across the world in Los Angeles made the process incredibly cumbersome. In typical situations, after the crew shoots, they process the footage overnight and hand it off to post-production the next day. But in this case, it took a day and a half at best to get to post. Not only did it slow down production and turn shipping into a huge expense, but it also took longer to catch mistakes. Time is money. Waiting for resolution costs a lot of both.

The bottom line is that you have to make sure the final result of working across multiple time zones is worth finding both the extra time and money in your budget.


2. Simplify processes to save time and money

Most people with “executive” in their title, such as your very own executive producer, don’t have time to read every single email they receive. Or any of them. Including executives in email, chains is often a formality. But as LaRocque explains, it’s a necessary formality that has a simple workaround.

We all know it’s the assistants who truly run the show, so LaRocque learned to group executive producers and their assistant(s) under the EP’s name. Every time she emailed one, she emailed them all. Grouping contacts pay off the first time you don’t have to search your memory for an assistant’s name or your inbox for a month-old email.

Another way to save money, time, and brainpower is to use a crewing service to book domestic and international video service providers local to your shoot. A good crewing service can be invaluable when it comes to (quickly!) finding high-quality crews with the right gear and vision for your project. Not sure how to even go about hiring a trustworthy crewing service? Here are five things you should look for.


3. Expect the best but prepare for the worst

You can get a decent idea of what a product will cost if you have worked on a comparable project, but there are always less obvious costs. Consider ahead of time what costs might come at a premium. If you’re traveling crew, you’ll need to set aside extra time and money for ferrying people and their oversized gear, feeding them, and putting them up. If you need to shoot a particular scene at night, keep in mind the premium crews charge for working overnight.

After you’ve budgeted for every subtle expense you can think of, add line items for the ones you’d bet against happening. If you don’t think “zombie apocalypse” will make it through the budget approval process, call it weather delays or gear failure instead. Whatever you call it, just go ahead build in the extra costs now so an extra 10K due to rain delay or a broken camera doesn’t bring your production to a grinding halt.

Similarly, post-production supervisors should have a backup plan in case money gets taken out of their budget. Since post means “after”, it’s only natural that it will receive what’s left of the budget after everything else has already gone wrong. Expect to work on a shoestring budget and you’ll be either dead on or pleasantly surprised.

Plan ahead, but also be flexible when things change course. Because they will. You’ll be easier to work with (and happier!) if unforeseen circumstances don’t derail you.

Who couldn’t use a little more time and a little less hassle on their next shoot? Barring interruptions from zombies, following these tips, and planning ahead will make your next project smoother and more profitable.


About Crew Connection

Crew Connection logo

Crew Connection puts a suite of marketing tools at your fingertips. Get your demo reels, stills, gear, awards, and more in front of the biggest clients all over the world—for free. At Crew Connection we pay video and post-production providers within 30 days of receiving your invoice so your work and your life are never interrupted. Need live assistance or want to add quality jobs to your pipeline? Our crew coordinators are on call around the clock. Sign Up on Crew Connection, call 303-526-4900, or email info@crewconnection.com.


This article was originally posted to productionhub.com. Read the original article here.

animated electronics | Crew Connection

What 2016’s video marketing trends tell us about 2017

What 2016’s video marketing trends tell us about 2017 1202 810 Heidi McLean

Videos are more accessible than ever—both to make and to watch. Good thing, too, because they’ve been found to increase engagement on every front from sales to click-through rates on emails and websites. And the sheer quantity of content is hard to fathom. In any given 30-day span, more video is uploaded online than what all three major U.S. T.V. networks combined have created in 30 years.

It all points to one thing: Video is taking over the world. The unmatched effectiveness and saturation of video on the web means it’s more important and harder than ever to rise above the noise.

What 2016’s video marketing trends tell us (in a tiny, tiny nutshell)


  1. Mobile video consumption is increasing rapidly—to the tune of about 100 percent every year.
  2. People are watching more videos on more devices and are apt to watch multiple videos on more than one device at the same time.
  3. YouTube has over a billion users. That’s about a third of all of the people on the Internet.
  4. Livestreaming and 360 videos are both on the rise. Video isn’t heavily-edited commercials starring handsome actors anymore.
  5. The Washington Post predicts video content will make up more than 80 percent of web content in the next several years.

Does that last one seem hard to believe? Then take a lesson from Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer, who said in 2007, “There’s no chance that the iPhone is going to get any significant market share. No chance.”

Every time someone says, “That could NEVER happen,” the universe conspires to make absolutely sure it does. So what do these video marketing trends mean for you and the eyeballs you’re trying to reach?

Early in their career, a young band called Dispatch got a piece of advice from one of their favorite musicians. “Make them listen,” he said. Spotify and Pandora bring a world of music to consumers’ earbuds. They can skip a song or discover a band in one click. The only way to make someone listen in these conditions is to make your sound so compelling they choose to bend their ear.

If you want to be ready for 2017, hire video service providers who understand your vision and can produce creative, high-quality content that makes people watch, click, and act.


About Crew Connection

Crew Connection logo

Crew Connection puts a world of video service providers at your fingertips. In just a few clicks you can search, chat with, and book vetted crews local to your shoot—all on your own schedule. Rely on Crew Connection’s team of media experts to organize the crews and gear you need for multi-day and multi-location video projects anywhere in the world. Our crew coordinators are on call around the clock if you ever need live assistance. Visit CrewConnection.com, call us at 303-526-4900, or shoot us an email at info@crewconnection.com.