I'm often asked,"hey, do you know anyone that works in your field that is looking for a job? We are hiring!" This is usually proposed to me from a marketing manager or from the owner of a company. It's a loaded question and the answer isn't something the asker is usually expecting.
I'll typically ask what qualities they are looking for in their new hire. Their response is always, "we are looking for someone that can shoot really well, edit really well, and produce amazing video content for us, and we also we need them to be able to shoot photos, do Photoshop work, create graphics, do 3D animation, and manage all of our social media platforms, and if they can write well and do sales that would be great too!" My reply (after face-palming myself) is to ask them if they also have to turn in the office's T.P.S. reports. Then I say,"Whoah that's a lot...what's the salary?!" Predictably, their answer is pay that's less than any one of those singular disciplines would earn annually but they try to qualify that with, "Well, it can be someone just starting out...they don't have to be REALLY good." The problem that the inquirer doesn't realize is, it's a tall order to find someone that can do all of that passably never mind finding someone that can do all of that well and at such a low salary. Now, it's not an impossible task to find that perfect do-everything "Swiss Army Knife" person, but bringing them into your team full-time will not be cheap. Keep in mind any person proficient in at least two or three of those fields is likely making around $65-75k per year in most cities. More if they are a contractor or freelancer.
What about hiring your nephew that makes pretty cool TikTok videos?
Hiring a film student or even someone you know that makes videos as a hobby and is okay-ish at a couple of those things can be a good way to save a buck, and it may be what you got started with and that's totally fine, it's a great start. but let's remember one important detail....this is YOUR brand we are talking about here. You've spent your life savings and all of your time and energy developing your products and growing your business and now you are at the point where you need to invest in real marketing content. Is okay-ish still good enough for you at this point? It's critical to make that best first impression to the world, to showcase your company's professionalism and culture to reach your ideal clients and customers. Cutting corners now is just cutting opportunities.
If you want a "Swiss Army Knife," they are likely running their own business.
Recently, a friend who works in the vehicle customization industry reached out to me asking if I had any full time videographer leads for their shop. They wanted a video-photo-graphics-photoshop-social media person. I tried to illustrate that finding that person is like finding a person that can build engines, fabricate parts, do paint, body work, and create custom upholstery, oh...and do sales. I explained, "IF you find that person, they're likely slaying it in their own business and not interested in the salary you are offering." I don't think it sunk in for them at that moment but they will find someone that will take the job they are offering, but it'll be someone that's still very green and figuring out the ropes. Let's face it, when it comes to your business do you have the time, money, and patience to pay someone to learn on the job? If you want a full-time, high quality "Swiss Army Knife," you should expect to pay a high quality price. By the way, have you seen the cost of those little red Swiss knives? The one pictured at the top of this page is $125 bucks! You can find a knock-off version but if you've ever bought a cheap pocket knife, you know you're just throwing your money away. See what I'm trying to say here?
Okay...so I've convinced you to 'up' the salary to attract a professional content creation specialists! Awesome! Now don't forget you need to buy the right computer, pay for software licensing, obtain stock footage and music licenses, upgrade to the best cameras, lenses, tripods, gimbals, lighting equipment, and microphones and all the other various mounts, stands, bags, video monitors, and gear that goes along with creating quality work. So skip that bonus this year, you won't be buying that new Porsche or fishing boat you really wanted because your new hire will need the tools of the trade. You can't expect them to wear out their own personal gear for your business either. Don't forget, every few years you'll also need to upgrade your company's video and photography equipment as it becomes obsolete, so make sure you budget for that too.
You already have enough going on in your business,
don't try and be a video production company too.
Don't worry! You CAN get the "Swiss Army Knife" you need for your business and you DON'T need to invest tens of thousands of dollars in equipment or pay the high annual salary of a qualified professional. You can bring in a turn-key content creation specialist whenever you need them and they'll have the experience and the gear to get the job done on budget and on time while simultaneously removing the stress of your team trying to do it yourselves. Don't try to fit a video production/photography business into your existing business! You are good at what you do and we are good at what we do. Let us elevate your brand for you. To bring this full circle...when you are in the business wilderness, you don't want to have a cheap dull knife with you. You want the best knife with all the tools and the sharpest blade and you want an experienced guide in this wilderness with you! In the end, deciding to contract with a content professional will offer you the best return on your investment.
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