CC, Let me throw in a sli



Let me throw in a slightly different take on this. I am a web programmer. You are asking 2 questions, which capture method and what delivery method.

As far as camera, get the highest definition cam you can afford. The women and men who have been in the field long enough will tell you it’s not the camera which makes the difference, it’s your talent and dedication to your craft. Like saying hey, you’ve cooked up a great meal, you must have an awesome oven. Technology will help, but a talented professional will be able to take a range of hardware and creativity to make a business financially work.

Bluray HD/DVD are delivery formats. They allow you to archive your media. Profits were getting lean from DVD, so lobbyists went to Washington to create laws so that broadcasters had to purchase higher definition equipment. Sony’s PSP, and Microsoft’s XBOX are pricey ways to sell games to kids. O by the way, these games need lots of storage, so they use Bluray and HD/DVD to deliver all this data. The video gaming market is huge, and as the major corporates saw their video revenues declining because less people can afford to buy prosumer cams as novices get into the game, they hit upon the brilliance of packaging a moneymaking gaming industry hardware device able to deliver the disk to play HD content. Since disks are nothing but computer storage solutions, they built in h.264 and a few other codecs to deliver video in addition to being a disk based data storage format. This is where I feel that the web is going to secretly overtake the optical disk markets, and the high end professionals will be caught unaware. Optical disk media you are familiar with are DVDs. Bluray and HD/DVD will be a good way to deliver more information on their storage formats in a few years when the average person can afford the hardware. Currently these high definition media storage disks are conversation pieces on chatrooms and provide hopes that increase in quality will create an increase in business sales prices. In reality Sony is probably seeing money. Maybe some of the other hardware companies who manufacture thousands of dollars worth of hardware are seeing money. It won’t trickle down to the average videographer until HD becomes available everywhere. Optical disks are one way media. This means someone has to clear their time of activities and vegetate in front of a 1 way box to stare at your media. Watching video is a very isolating experience. Delivering your media online is a 2 way process. This means as they consume your video they talk to their friends about your video. The conversation creates more conversation, and your video is watched more often. People who are aware of media value it. A very similar thing happenned in the audio industry. It’s not that consumers value music any less. It’s just they won’t pay the high prices for disk based media. More music is consumed now than any time in history. A lot of it is put out for free by mySpace bands. They give away the music for free and get paid to appear at concerts.

Using 2 way media you can charge your customer for video you create and give them 1 optical disk. Then put the entire piece online with your logo and link back to your website. When you can deliver your media to the 300-500 people who watch online, then they begin to value video. And this is where you can pick from your pool of potential clients. It’s a very different business model because online you expect people to talk about the video while they watch. The traditional method is charging your main client $3000 and spending a lot of time to try upselling $20 DVD or Bluray or HD/DVD media. Maybe your client will talk you up, to his 3 or 5 friends. Contrast that with what we’re doing here, in this text only forum sponsored by Videomaker. Videomaker spent the money to create this forum to allow us to talk. We are speaking to each other about a topic, not necessarily videomaker magazine topics. But we see the logo again and again, we see the advertiser products. I know it has made me more aware of these products. But whether or not I purchase any of the product, I get a great deal from the discussion. Using web 2.0 techniques your video is the topic, and your viewers chat up the video while it continues to play. Instead of the videomaker logo, it would be your own logo. Instead of you going out there to spending time marketing your services, let your clients come to you to watch your media and talk it up. Not 30 seconds or 5 minutes, the whole piece. Forget the $20 sales pitch to sell optical disks. By giving away the video, you can get the opportunity to sell real clients who want real accounts. More eyes means a larger pool of business you can choose from. I think the 1907 model of doing business is amazing. Create a great piece of media, then charge tickets. The moving picture people did that and were very successful in the era of Charlie Chaplin and talkies. Today the ticket price is purchasing a DVD. Tomorrow the ticket price will be purchasing a Bluray HD/DVD optical media disk. I don’t see purchasing a DVD or Bluray or HD/DVD as lucrative, I see it as a barrier to consuming video. It’s 2007, the emerging business model is create amazing media and charge your client. Then be brave and bold and give access to media so that other people who actually don’t realize they want to purchase media can see what they are missing. It’s not obvious why they need video, it makes no sense to them why they should pay someone to capture and edit media when they have their $150 digicam. So start showing it. In full. And if you’re a programmer create a space for people to talk up your video right on your site, so they can watch video and post positive commentary. 300-500 people who have good things to say is more lucrative than selling a few DVDs, because the 300-500 group will have financially aware enough buyers to purchase your services. It’s what we do here. Videomaker editors may not post on these forums, but some very educated video people do. I learn from them everytime I come here. I am applying this business model to sell video services. It’s working for me today. In 5 years I’ll check back with the HD/DVD/Blueray media crowd.

CC, the reason I suggest your purchasing a quality camera is that better video results in better online video. Today bandwidth is limited, yes. But we’ve come a long way in online delivery in less than 5 years. So you can spend the $15-30 for each of these high definition blank disks today. And the $800-1000 player. Learn java to create your navigation for these one way optical disks. Get a two-three thousand dollar computer to edit in high def. Purchase software which allows editing in high def. Hope your client gets a 60 inch flat screen to appreciate your high def work. And sell to that 1 person who can consume and pay for your media. Or create your process and workflow and deliver it online. Today. With 2 way methods of communication. To 400 people. For less than the cost of producing one HD piece. I realize my way of doing it is not as exciting as dreaming about fat HD profits that manufacturers are selling. But you can still give your client that DVD.

If you are established and have more business than you can handle, you won’t need to worry about online video, you’ll probably retire in 5 years. But if you are planning to do video over the next 5 to 10 to 20 years at least be aware of and open to online delivery. With bandwidth and storage becoming inexpensive, it’s a lot easier creating a market for hundreds or thousands of people who want video and come to your online property to consume your video. With optical disks you will always be saddled with the cost and time of producing each disk individually. A good $20 venture. But why chase $20 when you can get to choose from new potential $1000 business? It does take changing perceptions, though. X-D One videographer told me he gives the internet 5 years before it dies. Another videographer said she was so successful, she’s too good to sell the simple $2500 accounts. Good for them, but video will not flourish with an attitude like that. That attitude is great for the industrial revolution which makes one person powerful and forgets everyone else. They got theirs, they have no need to promote any other way of working.

I value video very much, and am building a business online based on what I believe. The more people are able to share good video, the more likely they will pay for high quality edited footage. But unless the video industry comes up with a professional way to share media not just consume it, people will continually take the video you shoot, reject the optical media you try to sell them and push it onto youTube. I hate that low level quality and all the ads surrounding good content. But Panasonic and Sony are not going to create or sell online solutions. It’s coming from grassroot efforts like me and other videographers / web developers who are creating their own ways to promote quality video. What are your opinions? Have you created a good way to allow sharing your media, have you put thought into how people discuss what you create? Or is it only relevant for people like me in their 30s, 20s, people who are doing non television/hollywood based work?

In answers to your question, CC. Get the best hardware you can afford, then at least be open to delivering online video today while the 1 way optical disk based methods sort themselves out over the next 5 years. And give your clients a couple of DVDs. If you’re lucky they won’t collect dust on a desk somewhere, those few DVDs will be your promotion tool.


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