How Major Brands Waste Money on Video Production


A common area where brands hemorrhage money is in the inadequate measurement and analysis of video performance. Without a robust system to track how videos perform and engage audiences, brands continue to pour money into unsuccessful strategies.

It’s crucial for brands to establish metrics such as view count, engagement rate, and conversion rate, and more importantly, to analyze these metrics to understand what works and what doesn’t. Failing to refine video strategies based on performance data is akin to flying blind in a storm, with financial repercussions to match.

The High Cost of Perfection


The pursuit of the perfect video production often leads brands down a costly path. The vision of creating a flawless piece can result in endless revisions and excessive production times. Directors and marketers might find themselves caught in a cycle of tweaking minor details—from the color grading to the script’s wording.

Each alteration, while potentially improving the video marginally, accumulates substantial costs in manpower and studio time. This fixation on perfection not only inflates the budget but can also delay the release, diminishing the content’s relevance and impact.

Misjudged Audience Preferences

Brands sometimes allocate vast resources to produce high-end videos based on what they assume their audience desires. However, this assumption does not always align with reality.

The disconnect between the content produced and the preferences of the target audience can lead to underwhelming engagement rates.

For instance, a brand might invest in a celebrity-endorsed, high-production advertisement expecting it to resonate with their audience, only to find that their audience prefers authentic, relatable content. Such miscalculations result in significant financial and strategic costs.

Overreliance on External Agencies


While external creative agencies bring expertise and fresh perspectives to video production, an overdependence on them can be financially draining for brands. Often, brands do not fully utilize their in-house capabilities, outsourcing tasks that could be accomplished internally at a lower cost.

External agencies may also prioritize their creative vision over cost-efficiency, leading to more elaborate and expensive production than necessary. This not only inflates immediate production costs but also affects long-term financial planning, as budgets must accommodate high agency fees.

Trend Chasing

In an effort to stay relevant, brands frequently chase after the latest video production trends. This could involve adopting new technologies, such as virtual reality or high-end animation, irrespective of whether these technologies meaningfully enhance the message being conveyed.

Investing in new tech can be exorbitant, and the return on investment is uncertain if the trend does not appeal to the target audience. Moreover, this practice can lead brands to abandon tried-and-true methods that might offer better value for money.

Neglected Content Strategy


A haphazard approach to video content can lead to financial wastage. Without a coherent content strategy, brands might produce videos that do not effectively build on each other or contribute to a larger marketing objective.

For instance, a brand might produce several standalone videos throughout the year, each with its own theme and style, which fails to cultivate a consistent brand image or narrative.

This lack of continuity can prevent the establishment of a strong brand identity, making each video less effective and reducing the overall return on investment.

The Hidden Costs of Licensing and Copyright Issues

A frequently overlooked aspect of video production that can lead to significant financial loss is the management of licensing and copyright issues. Major brands often use licensed music, stock footage, and other copyrighted elements to enhance their videos.

The costs associated with securing these rights can be steep, especially for high-profile or popular content. Furthermore, if not managed properly, brands can face legal penalties for copyright infringement, which can include hefty fines and damage to the brand’s reputation.

This scenario underscores the necessity for brands to have dedicated legal guidance when dealing with intellectual property, which, while increasing upfront costs, can save much more in potential legal fees and settlements.

The Overproduction Trap

In the realm of video production, more is not always better. Yet, many brands fall into the trap of overproduction—creating videos that are excessively long or overly complex without clear justification. This not only drives up production costs but can also alienate viewers who prefer more concise and to-the-point content.

Overproduction often stems from a lack of clear objectives or an attempt to convey too many messages in a single video. By streamlining their content to focus on core messages, brands can reduce production time and costs while improving the video’s appeal and effectiveness.

Ignoring User-Generated Content


In today’s digital age, user-generated content (UGC) has emerged as a cost-effective and engaging way to produce video content. However, many brands continue to overlook its potential, opting instead for professionally produced videos that require more time and resources.

UGC not only helps reduce production costs but also fosters a stronger connection with the audience, as viewers see real people, perhaps like themselves, endorsing or enjoying a product. Brands that encourage and leverage UGC can significantly reduce their spending on video production while enhancing brand loyalty and trust.

Failing to Repurpose Content

Another area where brands bleed money is in their failure to repurpose existing video content. Each video production is an investment, and brands can maximize this investment by repurposing content across multiple platforms and formats.

For example, a video initially created for a TV commercial can be edited into shorter segments for social media, included in email marketing campaigns, or used to create complementary content such as behind-the-scenes footage or bloopers.

By extending the life of video content, brands can enhance their reach and effectiveness without the additional costs of new productions.

Inefficient Resource Management


Effective resource management is critical in avoiding unnecessary expenditures in video production. This includes the optimal allocation of human resources, equipment, and budget. Brands often make the mistake of either underutilizing or overcommitting resources to certain projects.

For example, hiring an overly large crew for a simple production not only wastes money but can also complicate the production process, leading to inefficiencies and delays.

On the other hand, insufficient resources can result in poor-quality videos that fail to meet professional standards. Brands must strive for a balance, ensuring that resources are aligned with the production’s scale and complexity.