When it comes to producing video content there are a bewildering array of options. Should you out-source video production to an agency or produce that content in-house? It will of course depend upon your brand’s resources, and internal set-up, and your options may change based upon your current budget, as well as the of content you wish to create. And when it comes to production itself, there are as many options for high-volume production as there are for producing more bespoke videos.

At the 2014 ReelSummit, Jen Grogono of uStudio, Ben Pickering of SoMedia, Patrick Lor of Dissolve, Clayton Talmon de l’Armée of Salesforce, and Zach Blume of Portal A took a deep dive into the various production options that are available – and discuss details of the video production process, and help guide you as to what options you have based off your budget and desires. Watch the panel in full here, and read below for highlights:

What Should Companies Consider for Video Production?

Zach Blume: It depends on whether you are looking for a specific expertise. Portal A is known for producing content that does well on YouTube so that’s what we’re hired for. If you are looking to produce a great series of interview videos or explainer videos, then you’ll probably want the help of an expert in those fields. Find an expert or an agency that specializes in exactly what you need.

Clayton Talmon de l’Armée: At Salesforce, we built an internal video production department so we can react faster than if we had to liaise with an outside firm. Our relationships with our clients are so sensitive, and the relationships we have with them are often years in the making, so it’s important for us to be hands on.

Ben Pickering: We work with a lot of companies that have a need for multiple videos across multiple locations. Brands like Marriott Hotels who want to make video content for all of their locations. These videos need to be high-quality and consistent but with localized content, and previously this type of strategy would need local video producers. We leverage a crowd-sourced network that we manage, and so we can send 10 people out to 10 locations and know that the quality will be consistent across the board.

Patrick Lor: Filmmakers have to work harder today to provide value, and the way to provide value is to know your client better. A lot of companies keep production in-house because they don’t want to have to keep explaining to video production companies what they do. Great agencies will come armed with that knowledge so less time is wasted. Brands need to know that they are paying for expertise though, and that comes at a price.

How Much is a Great Video Really Going to Cost?

The panel were asked the cost of an average video production in their department or company:

Ben Pickering: The cost of video production spans the full gamut. At SoMedia, we can produce a 60-second, high-quality video profile, or a customer testimonial for under $1000.

Zach Blume: Our video projects range from $70,000 to $500,000.

Clayton Talmon de l’Armée: We are an internal department so the costs are basically the salaries of the team. Our marketing department can spend anywhere between $150,000 to $300,000 on a video – our department can produce the same quality of production for around $5,000 in equivalent costs. We own the process so can control the costs.

Patrick Lor: We tell brands and companies that they should have one really expensive video, that really communicates the emotion and philosophy about their products or services. Then, they should make a range of cheap but authentic videos. We also have an in-house team and sometimes it can take two weeks to produce a video, sometimes it takes two months. The costs are relatively low but our team are given all that it takes to make great content.

We’d like to thank Jen Grogono for moderating, and thank Ben, Patrick, Clayton, and Zach for passing on their expert knowledge of video production to the attendees of the 2014 Reel Summit.