If you're a professional videographer you need to get your money right

If you’re a professional videographer, you may count yourself lucky that you’re doing what you love for a living. However, in this post-victorian world where asking for money is a sin akin to that of not saying please or thank you, you may find yourself at odds when it comes to requesting a fee or even what fee to request.

Videography prices: Where to start

If you’ve just started out in the world of professional video it can be a little daunting asking someone to pay you money when you’ve got little to no professional work under your belt. Just remember that many have been in the same boat as you before.

If your video brief comes with a set price that’s always a good place to start. However, if you find the commissioning client asking you what your rate is don’t worry. A standard starting day rate for many in the UK is £500 shooting and £500 for editing. Across the pond many videographers should start between $500-$600 for either shooting or editing.

Videography prices: Negotiating

Many freelancers will live and die by their day rate but if you’re starting out or are dealing with a more premium corporate client, don’t be afraid to be flexible whether you go north or south of the price.

Many factors will play a part in your formulation of a rate, one of the biggest is travel. If you have to pay for petrol or jump on several trains, be sure to scope the prices for these before entering into talks with your potential client.

Your previous work is another big indicator of how much you should charge. If your client is wanting a lower fee and you’ve worked primarily on premium content then let your work speak for you. However, sometimes the opposite may be true in that you’re trying to break into more premium content. If this is the case you can use a lower price to your advantage.

Videography prices: Research your field

While certain day rates may seem fairly common, it’s good practice to talk with other videographers regularly and see who pays what and when. Unions are great ways of doing this, places like the NUJ London Freelance branch. Monthly meet ups or organised get-togethers allow you and your fellow videographers the chance to be frank about what you should be charging and if you’re charging too much or too little.