Wednesday, May 11, 2011

How Much Do You Love Doing Weddings?

Tell me again, how much you LOVE doing weddings. Tell me how “easy” they are to market, videotape, edit and produce. Tell me you NEVER experience frustration, burnout or other cycles of mental fatigue as a result of too many (or too few) weddings over non-specified periods of time.

And tell me again why it is that you focus all your energy (part time or full) on marketing, acquiring, bidding or begging for them; spend hours of your lives each year preparing for, schlepping equipment to and working weekend bridal fairs; buying vendor, DJ, wedding planner or photographer lunches; constantly revising and updating your website, website samples and related marketing materials such as business cards, brochures, full-production demo DVDs; why you spend all that time, energy and money to produce (what? maybe?) a couple of $2K wedding events a weekend?

Why are you working 10, 12 or more hours on a Friday, Saturday and/or Sunday, attending pre-event rehearsals where absolutely NOTHING that is rehearsed happens the WAY it was rehearsed at the actual event? Why are you bargaining with the bride and groom who KNOW they WANT a wedding video (some of you call it, your productions, “film” even though not one second of your work is actually produced on FILM) but do not value it enough to not haggle with you on price, or attempt to get you to “match” a price given them by their cousin who just got a consumer camcorder for Christmas?

Why are you putting in 20, 40 or 100 or more hours editing what has become a “labor of love” (REALLY?); spending time devising replies as to why the production hasn’t been delivered as promised? Why was it promised (in some cases even I used to make a four-week delivery guarantee “or your money back” to set me apart from my competition.) in weeks, months or years, only to take months, years or NEVER to get done?

Why are you taking on more, advertising and marketing for MORE business when you cannot even begin to reduce your current backlog; when you fight that endless vicious cycle of burnout, frustration and LIFE, juggling a REAL or full time job, family, illness, and all that beautiful, warm, wonderful and fabulous wedding video editing with all those kind, considerate, loving, patient, unassuming brides breathlessly waiting for months, even years, to see their video? Why all this, at no profit whatsoever; all this expense and work for an underpaid, under-appreciated production that has created ulcers, caused prominent headaches and sometimes divorce or failing partnerships?

Why are you putting forth all this effort, money, time and uncompensated hours of fast food, dirty coffee cups or empty RedBull cans, and battling against a HUGE, HUGELY competitive market where EVERY person with a camcorder, if nothing more, is attempting to claim a sniff, a smell, a touch, much less an actual TASTE, of the roughly 22 percent wedge of the bridal community pie that actually WANTS a video (er, uh, “film”) of what so many of us remind them is “The most important event of your life!”?

Diversify! Expand your focus. Even if you’re ONLY a weekend warrior (or “worryier”) putting in evenings and weekends in an effort to get your productions delivered, there’s millions more birthday, anniversary and milestone event celebrations held on a daily basis than there are weddings. The pie is much larger and I can assure you that the size of the business pie wedge of people who will pay reasonable fees for quality audio/video productions is is HUGE compared to the roughly 22 percent wedding video business wedge.

And if you’re full time. WOW! Think of the shorter, quicker, easier, less complicated, higher profit generating events you can now market and acquire!

Wedding video production is BAD?

No! But a part time or full time independent video production business based on a blend of wedding gigs you WANT and can be selective about accepting based on profitability rather than bargain basement competition (yes, YOU accepting instead of the other way around), combined with the awesome amount of potential event video production business held OUT THERE on a daily basis is a much less severe and overwhelming crunch on your bottom line and the life you try to live between gigs.

Remember: If you market, you will make it! © 2000 - 2011 Earl Chessher

P.S. Well, saw where my Marketing Challenge had no takers. Good to know that business is booming for everybody but me ;-)

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