How much should a promotional video cost?

The production cost of a promotional video (actually, any video) can vary wildly from supplier to supplier. Any video consists of a unique mix of technical and narrative elements determined by the amount of money you want to spend, and a return on investment expected.

Generally, mass market consumer goods adverts and promotions are high end productions where market share runs into billions - the market for chewing gum is over 3 billion rand annually, so spending a million or so on a TV ad make sense, the yields in maintaining and gaining market share justifies it. The video productions are high end and involve studios, high end graphics, exquisite locations, highly skilled technicians and top of the range equipment.

For smaller businesses and start-ups the situation is rather different. If your turnover is around 5 - 10 million per year, how much can you afford to spend and what quality are you prepared to accept?

We thought about it a bit and then came up with the idea to produce a sample a promotional material shot on a mobile phone. A smart phone with a decent camera is within reach of most business owners, so we thought, strip out all the smart tools and work on the cheapest, commonly available technologies: mobile phones.

Professionally, we are aware of the technical limitations of cell phone cameras, but limitations also test your skills, your ability to work within the constraints those limitations set. We will publish a comparative shoot using professional gear later and a final, side-by-side post pointing out the differences between the two cameras. Here are the results of the mobile shoot:

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