In my last post I spoke about why companies in London should consider hiring freelancers based outside of the capital and the many reasons they could benefit from this. Well, I thought it would make sense to follow up on that post with a focus on why one might choose to hire a freelancer at all.
So you may have established that you need video content for your business but after a quick Google search have realised there are endless numbers of people offering video services out there and they come in a wide range of sizes. Hiring a freelancer may or may not have crossed your mind at this point, but for many businesses and projects this could be a better fit for your video production needs than going through a traditional production company or agency.
'Why might this be?' you wonder.
Well, here are 5 reasons why you should consider hiring a freelancer to meet your video production requirements:
1. Overheads can be considerably lower.
The first and primary reason why you should choose a freelancer. Many of us work from home and so automatically have lower overheads than most agencies and production companies. This saving can in turn be passed on to you! Why should you pay over the odds for a product when you don't need to?
Many of us (but not all, I must add) aren't registered for VAT which for some organisations can be a bonus. If you're not VAT registered yourself or your cash flow is tight then you'll appreciate us not lumping another 20% on top!
It's important to note here that hiring a freelancer doesn't necessarily mean that you're going for a cheap option. As with any product, no matter who provides it, the truth in business is you get what you pay for. There are still a wealth of options when it comes to choosing a freelancer, and prices can vary considerably here too. However, as a general rule of thumb for many video projects, particularly for small businesses and start ups, hiring the right freelancer could be a cost effective investment.
2. Increased flexibility.
Freelancers, especially those who are in the early years of their career, accept that to build their client base an element of flexibility is often required. This is something that you can benefit from (but I'm not talking about asking them to work for free!). Business hours are typically 9 to 5, Monday to Friday, but in the freelancing world this is rarely the norm. Whilst there can be days where we work more regular hours it is quite common for work to push on into the evening, weekends or even start at 3am! Although this can infuriate our friends and family, sometimes the work just needs to get done. Adding to this, some production companies may need to hire (us) freelancers to work for them on weekends but will mark it up to take their cut, even if it's mostly us doing the work. Once again, we could be saving you money.
Perhaps you need video content last minute or you're setting up a business alongside your day job and only have time at the weekends? These are just some of the situations where a freelancer could be a wise choice for you.
3. You have access to our network.
Just because we work for ourselves rather than as employees for a large organisation, that doesn't mean we don't have good connections. In fact, we probably meet more people and make more connections than most employees because no two days are the same for us! With our wealth of contacts, both in our industry and unrelated ones, we can utilise other freelancers to enhance your product or simply just connect you with good people. But also..
4. ..We have a wide range of experience.
Once again, because we meet so many people and work with such a range of organisations we have invaluable experience and the ability to adapt to different environments and client needs. From a video production perspective, I recently went from being on a film set with a crew of 20+ people to filming by myself in a factory in Wales. Next week I'll probably be up a mountain somewhere.
We, as experienced freelancers, are adaptable and that makes us invaluable. The business environment and digital landscape is constantly changing and we are the ones that thrive off this change.
5. You can deal face to face.
We may be in the digital age where more and more business is conducted remotely or through Skype calls. But what's great about hiring freelancers is that you get to deal face to face with the person who you're going to work with, rather than a middle man. Granted, some occasions may result in a freelancer sourcing somebody else to help you, as mentioned above, but from the outset you know that at least for the majority of your project you will be dealing with one person and can form a solid working relationship with them. It's through these kinds of working relationships that a freelancer can get to truly understand you and your business and hopefully develop it into a long term relationship. The receptionist at the agency may not appreciate your call just before 5 o'clock but the freelancer will!
Remember: it's the right fit for the job.
I'm not going to lie to you; sometimes there are situations where a video agency is a better choice. As individuals we can't perform miracles and sometimes we simply just don't have the time or can't offer the studio space that you need for example. However, there are so many reasons why it is at least worth considering a freelancer first and you may just be surprised at what we can do for you.
If we can't help you then the chances are we'll know someone who can. All you have to do is start the conversation.
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