When you’re planning your wedding day, finding the perfect vendors is always one of the hardest parts! Today, we’re focusing on how to hire the right videographer with guest Crystal Annear of Annear Wedding Films. We’ll be sharing the tips to ensure you have a personalized experience and the end product film that you are looking for, as well as a professional videographer to work with from start to finish. Let’s dive in!
I’m the owner of Annear Wedding Films. I’ve been producing weddings for about 11 years and started right after I graduated from New England Tech. I studied video and audio production there. When I graduated, I worked for a few different companies before eventually starting my own business!
There’s so many things we could talk about when it comes to wedding videography. But let’s start at the beginning, where should couples be looking to find the right videographer for them?
I think a lot of couples tend to go on Instagram, look at things that are trending, and find companies from all over to see what they like. But what I think that they should be doing instead is going to the vendors they already have and asking for their recommendations. Especially their venue and photographer. From those recommendations, they can review the websites and films to decide which actually fits their vision for their wedding film.
Once they’ve found a few videographers they like, what kind of questions should they ask when chatting with possible vendors?
One thing that’s really important is knowing who’s going to show up. WIth smaller mom and pop companies, it’s likely going to be the owner or a team member. With bigger production companies, you might not know. So if you connect with someone, knowing that they’ll be the one there capturing your day is a big deal! If it is going to be a team member, you can definitely ask how long they’ve been with the company. If they’re using the same people over and over, it’s more likely that those team members will still capture the parts you loved from the videos you saw online.
If couples see clips of a wedding video online, should they still ask to see anything else from a videographer before making a decision?
I’m glad you brought that up because as a videographer, we’re obviously going to be putting pieces of work online. But, what’s more important than these highlight films is for couples to see a full length video of the entire day. The terms might vary from studio to studio, but I call them “full length videos”. That means it’s a live edit of your ceremony and reception events. This should be professionally cut with different angles, mixed audio, and a final high quality video at the end. The goal is to see consistency in that final full video. Again, highlight videos are shorter – usually to showcase a venue or part of a day. And they’re great. But that’s not going to show you what that studio is truly capable of.
What else should couples be looking for when hiring a professional videographer?
Right from the start, like I mentioned earlier, it’s important to get recommendations from your other vendors because they wouldn’t be recommending this person if they didn’t like working with them themselves. The next most important thing is to meet with your videographer beforehand – at least through a video call if not in person. Think about how you feel with them and if you want to spend your entire wedding day with them. During that call, make sure they’re asking about YOU. If they’re going to make a love story about you, then they need to know about you – not just talk about themselves.
What questions should couples be asking their videographers to make sure that they’re hiring team players – and people who know what they’re doing?
When it comes to the product, I think it’s important to ask to see the longer edits. Listen to how they explain what the final product contains. Are they using color correction? Professional audio? Those are things to watch for. I think it’s important to also ask them how they’ll work with your other vendors, particularly your photographer. A good videographer will want to have a connection with your photographer before the wedding day!
What are some of the popular trends you’re seeing in wedding films right now?
One thing that’s been really big for the past few years now is drone footage. I won’t lie, it looks amazing. And it’s so beautiful. This footage can really help set the scene of the video. The other thing right now that’s popular are films that are cut quickly and can be shared online.
I think all of that is great, truly. But, it comes down to choosing a videographer with a style that you love. Trends are fun, but they’ll eventually pass. When I’m doing a wedding film, while I will get those detail shots or you getting into a dress or something, my job is more about capturing the real moments between you and your family – the laughing with your sisters or mom, the tears with your spouse.
I love that. How can couples prepare their bridal party or immediate family that a videographer will be around on their wedding day?
We always tell our couples to let their VIP members (family and wedding party) know that a videographer will be there, just so no one feels like they’re in the way! We don’t like to do a lot of posed shots, so we’re often shooting over people’s shoulders. Because of that, we don’t want family members or bridal party members concerned they’re in the way. They’re absolutely not! Instead, they can just ignore us and let us capture those candid moments.
Okay, so we’ve talked about how to learn about their work. But, what questions should couples ask videographers to ensure they’re a good fit?
First and foremost, you know, when you’re talking to a videographer, you should ask them for examples of everything you’re receiving in your package. So if you’re going to be getting a full-length video, ask to see one! Ask about their setup or how they’re capturing audio. Those things matter and you should feel confident they’re going to capture your day well.
Another thing that’s really important that we’ve touched on a lot in this episode is, do you have issues working with a photographer or other vendors? I think that’s a really important question that they should be asking potential vendors.
Finally, make sure to ask how they’re going to personalize the film and experience for you. At our studio, we send out a few questionnaires in the process. One of them is basic timeline questions, but then the other is more about the elements of their day. We want to know why things matter and are special to them. This helps us shape the film so it’s perfect for the couple. We also ask about music and sounds which helps us edit the film more personally, too.
What should couples look for when hiring a videographer, to ensure they’re working with the right professional for their wedding day?
- Make sure they’re asking about you, your life together, your love story, and other personal questions to get to know you so that you get a personalized film!
- Ask about backup equipment AND backup team members. If the person that’s been planning to come can’t make it, will they be sending someone in their place that’s got a similar style? Will the final product still be what was guaranteed?
- Determine the expectation for your wedding day. Know who’s coming, who’s editing, and who to expect. Make sure your final product details are laid out clearly, too.
Links Mentioned in the Episode
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