The breakdown is just pie-in


The breakdown is just pie-in-the-sky figures, that certainly here in the UK wouldn’t float with the taxman!
Person hours 8 x $50 per hour = $400 Broadcast TV rates in the UK, for self-shooters with gear is less than that – by quite a way
Road time hrs 2 x $25 per hour = $50 You charge this much for sitting in a car? Wow!
Gas/car exp = $16 avg In the UK even with our HUGE tax on fuel, which is at a ten year low of about $7 a gallon, we have a tax approved rate of around 70c/mile
Food = $20 avg – Food? Everyone has to eat – at home or at work, so you can’t factor in food, toilet paper, blades for a shaver etc – these are not expenses, but just what you spend to live!
tape stock = $18 – Don’t use them, and cards cost much less than this.
Editing 20 to 40 hours @ $35 per hour = $1,050 for 30 hours – Again, I’d love to have clients willing to pay this much – this one is closer to my rates, but still optimistic.
Insurances = $20 avg per event, based on a $1K annual premium? you pay a GRAND a year for insurance? Wow!
Electricity = $5 (no logic applied, arbitrary number) A VERY arbitary number. My edit suite costs less than $1 a day to power.
Equip depreciation/wear = $25 per gig avg How does this work on a per gig basis? Nobody sells gear on “only 127 gigs” – it’s possibly hours, but usually just years that matter. Depreciation is also accounted for in your accounts – so you can’t use it to mitigate your profit for tax purposes, AND charge it to the client.
DVD, ink, paper, cases = $5 per unit Blimey – I hope not or I should be doubling what I charge for duplication.
Postage = $10 This I believe – assuming your postal system in the US has faulty scales. $10 to post a DVD? Really?
Web costs = $20 per gig avg est cost – eh? What costs $20 per gig.
Advertising = $20 per gig avg est cost – Advertising is a business expense, not charged to the clients surely? A wedding or other event doesn’t cost you to advertise it? Your advertising budget divided by the gigs per year might come to this, but if you pick up another wedding by answering the phone, there’s no real cost, is there – and again, the cost of advertising comes off your profit, reducing your tax.
Space, office, room use = $50 per event/gig est – again, this makes no sense on a per event basis.

While I understand that these things do cost us money – they are the costs of running a business, not the cost of each job you do. If you are mega busy, then the costs on this basis reduce drastically, but if you are less busy, they appear more – so the premise is flawed.

If you do a job (and I don’t do weddings but mainly theatre stuff), then the direct costs of doing the job are simply those things you had to spend that if you had stayed at home with feet up, you wouldn’t.

So using one from last week.
3 memory cards – £18 Charged out at £30
Fuel £16 (cost) but charged as £37
My day rate £200 (including two hours travelling time)

So that job, which didn’t include any editing brought in £233 as margin on a cost of £34.

Car repairs in the UK are nowhere near $90 an hour!

Weddings cost 4K because the market will stand it. Broadcast TV would never pay that much, because they know what it really costs – and wedding couples don’t. I’m not saying it’s not worth it – clearly, the clients pay it and are happy, and the wedding companies make a decent profit. I just wish they would also remember that this is NOT normal. Pointing a camera at a celebrity, apologising for not being able to make the awards ceremony – pays far less than doing a wedding – yet is seen by huge numbers, and is often shot on very expensive gear. I’m really sorry, but weddings are far more lucrative than what I get to stand around all day in a freezing cold factory, waiting for a delivery of clever equipment. Reading about how hard done by the wedding people are just makes me smile – a reality check is severely in need. Guys – take the money, but please, I really cannot feel sorry for your terrible terms and conditions, because frankly, you’ve got a free pass to a brilliant income stream, that I’ll never have dealing with businesses and broadcasters.

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