People love shopping! Going into the store, seeing items that you love, picking them out, and ringing up the till – there’s just something so satisfying about that. But when it comes to ‘shopping’ for a video production agency? Most people will tell you it isn’t that easy.
After the rounds of research that goes into shortlisting production companies, organisations typically reach out to multiple with a request for proposal (RFP) and invitation to quote (ITQ) so that they can compare what they get before choosing who to work with. Needless to say, this is a tedious and time-consuming process.
Even after that, a lot of things can go wrong – miscommunication, ghosting, poor fit of styles, budgeting differences, and so on. You might wish that there was a ‘right’ formula for crafting these e-mails to ensure a smoother, expedited process every time.
As a video production company, we’ve received our fair share of RFP and ITQ e-mails as well. We might not speak for all video companies, but from what we’ve seen, allow us to offer you some suggestions of what might bump up the efficiency of your RFP e-mails.
Provide Clear Style References
This might have happened to you before: You send out an ITQ to an animation studio in Singapore, but the company can’t give you one. Why? Most times, video production companies can’t give you a reasonable estimate until we know what type of video you want.
It isn’t enough to tell us that you’re looking to create a corporate video. As far as possible, let us know what you want it to look like – 2D animation, 3D animation or live video? Do you have samples of videos you really like? What type of cinematography are we looking at?
Providing companies with links to video or photo references can really speed up the process so video agencies can give you a more accurate quote. They will also have a better idea of the video direction, reducing the chances of communication breakdowns down the road.
Outline Objectives In Your Video Proposals
On the note of quotes, making the objectives of your video project clear to video companies will also better inform us on the quote we set. Some important details to include are your target audience and the video’s key message (e.g. a call to action). With these pieces of information, video companies can make more specific proposals and suitable quotes that will suit your expectations.
Your goals and objectives determine the backbone of the video, and knowing this right off the bat will greatly expedite the ideation process. When production companies are clear of the results you expect, they can focus their attention on helping you reach your goals, which is a win-win situation for all.
Enquire About Revision Policies
It’s the same for any type of creative work – opinions can and will differ, and revisions are often part and parcel of the process. What’s important to you is how this video production house is going to treat the creative process.
Some companies state upfront their revision policies, while others are more secretive about it. It’s always good to make things clear from the start, so that there won’t be any unhappiness or disputes once the project is underway. To put it another way, this helps both parties ensure they don’t waste each other’s time.
Ask For Client References
Obviously, any company on their own website would sing high praises of what they can achieve and produce. But what you’re really interested in is how they work. Asking for a couple of client references gives you assurance that the video company has had positive relationships with their past clients. If you are able to get in touch with one or more of these references, you might even be able to get a sneak preview of what it’s like to work with that particular video agency.
Let Us Know The Competition
We know we’re probably not the only company you e-mailed looking for a quote and proposal on your video project. We’re cool with that – but letting companies know how many other competitors they’re up against can also work well in your favour.
Without letting video companies know how wide you’ve cast your net, we tend to assume that the net is really big. Some companies then decide not to keep their hopes high, or refrain wasting their efforts to woo their prospective clients. Instead, giving companies a realistic view of what they’re up against can ignite more motivation and boost the quality of bids you receive.
The Ideal Video Proposal or RFP
Of course, we daren’t say there’s a one-size-fits-all, perfect formula to getting wonderful proposals every time with these RFP-writing tips. However, we are pretty sure these will help you save a lot of time and frustration across your hunt for the right video production company.
While you’re here, don’t forget to check out what we have to offer as a video agency as well. Why not drop us an RFP so we can talk about making your project happen?