I appreciate the comments


I appreciate the comments and the bantor… I think it helps the general population to hear varying views.

Here’s mine:

I’ll quit the business before I give anything away. No one, not even the client, prospers from free anything. Besides, is anything really free? I just read something on the airlines recinding a fare increase over the week-end. Talk about an unprofitable industry! Just a $5 per one way fare increase initiated by Delta and matched by the other US carriers unraveld under pressure from foreign carriers.
The TV, video production and visual delivery business has been bleeding under pricing pressures as well.
I respect anyones business model and if giving away services tend to add more business, I’d like to hear more about it. My established clients wouldn’t dream of asking me to do anything free for them. In return, I can’t in good faith offer a free service to anyone else.

My post was more in line of how to price a very subjective product in a very subjective industry. My point was this: If there are people with video acquisition gear trying to drum up some business and they don’t know what to charge (which I believe is the crux of this thread) then my point is "What is your time and talent worth"? More than $5 an hour?

Back in the day when video production was seeing better days, I would often hear producers tell clients, "time, quality, money… pick two". I think it applies today as well. I shot a video christmas card for my wife and I last year. Spent 5 hours shooting and about 3 hours editing the project. A lot of people asked me what it would cost to shoot one for them next year. If I went by the rate card, it would cost $750+. I don’t think anyone would consider that a "value". So you have to ask yourself how much discounting of your talent can you withstand to gain the business. I won’t do them for $100 and I certainly won’t do them for free. Does anyone’s next door lawyer neighbor give away his service?

I’ll put a caboose on this very convaluted train of thought…

I say again…not everyone can afford video production and we shouldn’t discount till it hurts to earn business. We should earn business by providing a professional, valuable, creative service exceeding the customers expectations and offering that service at a "resonable price".

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