How much should I charge for video editing?
November 12, 2008 3:03 PM   Subscribe

How much should I charge to create a promo video for a friend?

I've been ask to edit footage to create a short promo video for a friend of mine who is a professional performer. She has all the video she wants me to use, and is content to have me use my Mac to produce a final product. Our market in Calgary is such that video production companies are not taking 'small' jobs from people as the demand from oil and gas, as well as other markets have

I am not a professional by any means, but am extremely proficient in video editing. The footage has already been shot, so it looks like some straightforward work.

I expect the video to be about 10min long when done, and will require going through 3 hours of her footage.

Obviously, the general rule of thumb (1hr per min of video) may not apply, as I didn't generate the video and as such have no idea what there is, and since it's not 'my vision'.

What is a fair rate to charge given I am not a professional?

With thanks!
posted by burhan to Media & Arts (5 answers total)
What's it worth to you? What's it worth to your friend? Your answer is somewhere in-between.

What I mean is that it might be worth doing for little or nothing if it provides you with some other value, such as a demo reel or other promotional opportunities. But if you don't want or need that or your time is more important then you ask for what your time is worth to you.

If your friend balks then you work it out.
posted by trinity8-director at 3:46 PM on November 12, 2008

If you're getting paid, you're a professional. :) So how long do you figure it will take, maybe 6 hours? How much do you make normally, as in, how valuable is your time when you are getting paid, whatever it is that you do for money? Also, what level of professional is the performer? Mostly drum circles? Venue and tour? How much do the companies charge who refused to do it? You know, like how much would it have been if they had taken the job on? You could actually call them up and ask what they charge for the smallest jobs they do take. This might get you into a smaller ballpark of numbers where you can start to Kelly Blue Book yourself more easily.
posted by rhizome at 4:46 PM on November 12, 2008

Um, where did you get 1 hour per finished min of video? Try 10 to 20 hours (or more) depending.

But here's an easy way to figure it out. Sit down, figure out how much time you're going to take. How much footage is there? How many times will your friend see an edit, give notes and you revise?

Divide that by 8. That's how many days it will take. Then, figure out what your time would be (if you were doing some other paid work.) That's a good idea of your professional day rate. Alternatively you now can guess your hourly rate (which you may want to jack up, as the idea is that your hourly rate is higher - so people find your day rate a 'bargain.'

Now, because it's a 'friend' - you ought to have some rules and a discussion (what if she want endless revisions?) about how the review process + time should occur.

If you're trying to be nice - give her an estimate of how much time it'll take - and give your day rate (and/or) hour rate in case you get done earlier/faster/etc.

That's a great place to start. Bonus: bid the job out to someone in your area, specifically competition, to see if you're in hte ballpark.
posted by filmgeek at 7:07 PM on November 12, 2008

Don't forget to factor in re-edits. Those are guaranteed. You need to work out how you want to deal with them. The client needs an incentive to stop at some point or it will go on forever.
posted by trinity8-director at 4:44 PM on November 13, 2008

$40/hr. Enough to make a difference to you, not enough to be a "professional" rate. Tell her that, and if she balks, don't do it. She makes money off doing her thing; so should you.

Sorry to be callous, but my "I've been taken too many times to the well by the FRIENDs" filter is kicking in rather strongly this week.
posted by liquado at 10:22 PM on November 13, 2008

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