By Andrew Angus on June 26, 2012

Clapper To Contract or Create Your Own VideoThree weeks ago, we sent Meagan and Heather to the Founder Fuel Demo Day and C100’s Accelerate MTL event in Montreal. While they were there, they met with dozens of entrepreneurs and VCs. As experts at developing and perfecting product videos, they fielded a ton of questions. Everything from how long it takes to create a video to who our favorite clients to work with are. But the most commonly asked question was: when is the best time for a company to invest in contracting out a video?

The first two questions were easy enough to answer on the spot. It takes about six weeks to produce the average video. And, of course, we love all of our clients equally. The second question, though just as common, requires a more in-depth response. Knowing when to contract a video out or simply produce it yourself can be difficult. Some companies need to have their videos professionally produced, while others can save money by learning to produce videos themselves.

So, how do you know which option is right for you and your company? Below we’ll explain when it’s best to look into professional production and when it’s best to start a DIY project.

To Contract…

The great thing about contracting video creation is that you can be involved in the creative process without being held responsible for the legwork. Plus, you have the experience of trained experts to guide you through the often complicated process step-by-step. It enables you to offer concise messaging and helps the video remain objective. At Switch Video for example, the team dedicates as much time to the messaging as we do the visuals to create a complete and thorough video.

  • You’ll save hours of your time and your employees’ time. While you will be involved in the creative approval process, you won’t have to worry about storyboarding, filming or editing. All of which are, of course, very time-consuming.
  • You’ll have a video with professional appeal. Contracting the work means you’ll have conversion experts who know what works and what doesn’t. So, not only will the video look professional, but the results will be professional as well.
  • A professional service will follow up on what strategies improve the bottom line. They use those insights to advise other clients and support their success.

Or Not To Contract…

Still, contracting a video is an expensive endeavor that just isn’t feasible for some companies. Learning to create your own video is a great, less expensive alternative. Companies in their early stages are free to pivot. Plus, it’s an effective way to get to know the core of your value proposition.

  • You’ll be free to pivot and change your mind. Early stage companies cannot be expected to stick with their original ideas exactly. It’s a well-known fact that companies pivot based on what works and what validates. You won’t be locked into an idea thanks to the purchase of an expensive explainer video.
  • You’ll save thousands of dollars. Professional video production is an expensive process. Consider that there are salaries to be paid, materials to be purchased and professional video production tools to be used when you choose expert production.
  • You’ll simplify your messaging. If you’re an early stage company still looking to perfect your elevator pitch, creating a 60-second video as a team could be a great exercise for you to work through.


The truth is that contracting the work out is not right for every company, but neither is going it alone. It all depends on your company’s unique situation and goals. We hope this answers the common question once and for all. On behalf of Meagan and Heather, thank you to everyone who took the time to chat with us at Accelerate MTL and C100. We had a fantastic time at both events and look forward to many more to come!

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