April 3, 2023

CDM’s 8 Steps To Executing Video and Photo Production

Photo and video shoots are fun, but a lot more goes into creating beautiful media for your business than simply getting a bunch of creative people in a room together. 

Planning out photo and video production shoots can be a lengthy and detailed process. After many years of experience (and a lot of trial and error), we’ve developed a straightforward method to plan and execute a flawless photo or video shoot for our clients. 

For each project, we outline the production timeline so our clients understand where we are in the process. Then, the action items are delegated to our collaborating clients and team to keep things running smoothly. 

Each phase of a production can have many action items outlined with details to complete each one. So, we’ve created a successful and collaborative approach, making the production process seamless. Read on to learn what our processes are and how we execute them!

CDM’s 8 Steps To Production

Step 1: Pre-planning and Development 

Planning is a big part of a project’s success. We use this phase to discuss internally and to outline creative ideas. In addition, we research what media exists for similar projects, review data and analytics from your past projects if applicable, and get more details about the project.

We will also cover the goals for your production and if you’ve collaborated with a team before. Details like these can help us communicate with you during each phase so you and your team aren’t guessing.

Step 2: Finalizing Planning Details 

After we work through pre-planning questions, we move into planning, which typically involves the client and their team. We get to learn about all the project details, discuss our ideas, and consider the client’s feedback when making a final decision on the direction of the production.

We will also outline everything we need from you to start the pre-production meetings.

Step 3: Pre-production Timelines and Approvals

We use this phase to plan production logistics. While there may be several meetings to discuss logistics, we’ve found this stage crucial so we are prepared for production day. For example, we’ll discuss the equipment needed, how many team members are on the set, or even hiring hair and makeup for the talent.

All these details must be finalized for your secured date so we can focus on our internal execution.

Step 4: The Day Of Production

This is the exciting part! We get to take all the pre-planning and pre-production work to start filming your project. Production can be a day to multiple days, depending on the approved creative. A lot of video recording and photography is happening at this stage. 

We try to make our clients as comfortable as possible on production day. We do this by:

  • Minimizing our equipment and lighting.
  • Having a small production team.
  • Ensuring that our clients meet their production team prior to production day.
  • Ensuring that the client is aware of what we’ll be shooting on production day (or on each day for a multiple-day project).
  • Providing plenty of space in the schedule for breaks, water, meals, and a slower production pace to keep stress down. 

Step 5: Internal Footage Reviews

Our team likes to review everything we captured on the production day. This step helps us ensure we have all the shots and assets needed to start the editing phase.

At times, it’s necessary to schedule a re-shoot because of something that was out of both parties’ control, like the weather, something didn’t go as planned, or something/someone didn’t make it to the shoot.

Step 6: Post-production Timelines and Expectations

There is much organization and editing during this phase. This is one of the more extended parts of the step. During the pre-planning phase, we will have an agreed-upon photo or video production timeline for the post-production stage. 

Editing content does take a lot of time. Editing can take anywhere from 4-8 weeks minimum. When deciding when you’ll need your final content, consider adding extra editing time. 

Step 7: Revision Rounds For The Footage

After the initial results from production day, we give our clients time for revisions. Many businesses have multiple stakeholders that must review the photo and video assets, including team members in the marketing, legal, and/or PR departments. It can take a minimum of 14 business days for the revision phase, but can be extended depending on the project. We suggest adding some time for this phase, too. 

This is the time for our clients to carefully review all assets and contact us to share feedback. Our clients provide comments and approval of the final deliverables during this time. The faster we get the revisions, the quicker we can move into the wrap-up. 

Step 8: Wrap-Up and Delivery

We export to final resolution and content sizing in this phase. A full 4k video can take hours! Images with a 300dpi can take a while to export, as well. We use this final wrap-up phase to organize the final files in your client space, making it easy for you to download the videos and photos for publication.

Let Us Create Your Next Video or Photo Project

Ready to create some beautiful photos and videos for your brand? We’re here to help! Fill out our inquiry form to learn more about how you can work with our team to create content for your business!

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