We need to hire a “videographer” you know someone who makes videos because all video content is the same and all people who make videos are “videographers” and they can make any type of content with only a day turn-around right? Sound familiar? Unfortunately, this type of thinking is what I see and hear more and more. Let’s look at why not all content is made equal, why Creators or, “videographers”, can’t make everything, and why hiring a “videographer” might actually be bad for your business.
Let’s start with the word itself, “videographer”, what does it mean? According to dictionary.com it means;
“a person who makes films with a video camera.”
Here’s the start of the problem. This definition of the word, “videographer”, says it all. You may have noticed by now that I’m not capitalizing the, “v”, when using the word “videographer”. You also may have noticed that every time I use the word it’s in quotes. This is because for years I’ve said that the word “videographer” is a fake word and I stand by that statement to this day. This word is so generic in its terminology, just like the word photographer, however, photographer is usually said with an additions descriptor; nature photographer, portrait photographer, etc. However, “videographer” is used to describe anyone who makes videos. Using this logic, the kid who made his first “film” showcasing his buddies on the basketball court and Steven Spielberg are both “videographers”, but we all know this not to be true.
But we are in need of someone to help create all sorts of different types of content within our organization, we need a, “jack-of-all-trades”, a “one-man-band”, etc. to which I say, stop it, stop it right now! What you are actually looking for is a, Media Director, someone who can come in and review what your needs actually are, knows the current media landscape for your particular business, is able to come up with a media plan to accomplish your business objectives, and then hire and manage a media team to accomplish those goals. Seems like a lot right, because it is. Creating content, especially specialized content, is not easy. It takes a lot of skill and the right leader to bring all those skills together, create a plan, and then execute on that plan.
Hiring a single person, a “videographer”, might actually hurt your business more than it helps. There is so much that goes into creating content that’s impactful it’s nearly impossible, if not totally impossible, for only one person to do it all. If you are able to find this person, please let me know so I can hire them right away. When there’s only one person whose got their hands in so many different pots all at the same time there are things that will be executed poorly, incorrect, or just missed entirely. In the end this could hurt your business more that it helps.
Gary Vaynerchuk says that there are four people every startup needs:
- A video person
- An art person
- A writer
- A math person
He’s 100% correct. This is your basic media department. The writer needs to be able to do two things:
- Tell an epic story.
- Write content that’s relevant and extremely knowledgeable about your particular industry.
The art person needs to be able to create art work and a look for the video campaign the writer has written for. The video person should be able to create multiple videos using the writers written word and the direction from the artist. The math person is key, this person needs to understand the market in which the content will be displayed; Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, etc. Where will the content appear, who will it be targeted to etc. Now Gary Vaynerchuk says a, “video person”, you might say, “aha! This is where a videographer comes in!”, but you’d be wrong. This is a specialized role, skilled at creating the type of content the Media Director has planned for and decided is correct for the brand.
If you don’t know who Gary Vaynerchuk is please finish this blog then look him up right away and spend the next seven days doing nothing but watching, listening to, and reading everything he’s done.
If you’re not able to create a proper Media Department you can always reach out to companies, like Saga Studios, (pardon the self-promotion plug), or any other credible Creative Production Company out there. Companies like ours are already setup with the proper people in-place and are very specific about the clients we take on. When finding the right Creative Production Company make sure they have your interests above theirs, they should take time to deliberate on whether your business is a right fit for them and what you’re trying to accomplish is something they can deliver. Just like how a videographer with too many hands in too many pots can hurt your business, so can a production company that takes on each and every client they come into contact with. No one company can do everything well, just like no one person can do everything well.
Yes, the video person should be skilled in shooting, editing, sound designing, graphics, and delivery of video, but I still believe that, “videographer”, is too low of a word. It’s like calling a Chef a cook, they worked very hard to attain the skills and experience to be called a Chef. They are more than cook, they are an artist in the kitchen creating masterful feasts to be enjoyed by all your senses. The same applies here, most Content Creators spend a lot of time learning multiple skills and all the intricacies of each part of the process in order to be able to create a feast for the eyes (pun intended). In order to capture an emotion, present it on a screen, and have the viewer deeply connect with it takes years to accomplish.
So, what do we call someone who creates video content? Well, that’s not been clearly defined, if it was this blog post wouldn’t exist, but I’ll leave you with a few thoughts. Content Creator, Visual Storyteller, Video Artist, etc. Whatever you call them make sure it’s something specific. Something that mirrors the years of skill it has taken to be able to do what they do and that goes for every position. People work hard for that title, it should be given more thought and understanding by the people handing them out. With that being said, please don’t hire anymore videographers.