Tuesday, February 20, 2018

Moving Forward With A Life Change...

Moving Forward...

When I was 19, I worked at the Covington IGA on the night crew stocking groceries. One day – it was August – a hot August morning, I got off work and started to drive home. It would have been a short drive – like five minutes – but at the last minute, I made a hard right hand turn on to US 136 and instead of going home, I drove seventeen miles to the local community college and enrolled for the Fall semester.

I had often considered making that hard right instead of going straight home and I can’t say what finally motivated me to do so on that hot August morning but before I knew it, my life was taking on a new, fresh direction. I had broken out of a rut – broken the mold so to speak.

This has happened to me many times over the course of many years. It’s the way successful people move forward. It’s how they make huge achievements in their lives.

It’s scary because you take a risk when you make a move. You risk your time, your money, your prestige and your future. But once you have taken that step, made that “hard right”, you feel so much better because you have empowered yourself.

"It’s scary because you take a risk when you make a move."

You in turn will eventually empower someone else.

Are you on the verge of something big? Is it your time? Can you see the signs? Can you feel it?

If your dream is having your own video business, make a “hard right” and call me.


May the Force be with You.

Robert Hanley
CEO & Founder
Home Video Studio & Digital Video Archive

Sunday, November 12, 2017

How to Price and Quote Video Productions Part 1

I am not sure if anyone reading this remembers the Videomaker Expos. Videomaker Magazine did these for many years usually on the east and west coasts. It was approximately a three-day event with classes on videography, lectures, roundtables, video contests, vendor fairs, guest speakers and tons of other fun stuff. I used to love attending these events. Home Video Studio would attend the Expo and I was a guest speaker. 

Most of the guest speakers were covering topics like editing, cameras, mikes, etc. I spoke on something much more important… making money with video!

Picture this. There would be several hundred people in the audience – most of them pro and amateur videographers and video company owners. Always… always when I was introduced the people in the audience would not know what to think at first. Who is this guy? He’s not talking about equipment, computers, cameras or lenses, etc. What??? What’s Home Video Studio?

I would quickly start off by asking one simple but direct question. I would shout out “raise your hand if you have ever made a video for free.” Every hand would go up. That’s because this is the way that almost everyone starts out (yours truly is an exception – my first film was a $23,000.00 documentary) by making a freebie for someone – your kid’s dance team, swim team or the marching band. Maybe you shot your friend’s wedding for free. So almost everyone’s hands would go up when I asked this question. 

I would shout out “raise your hand if you have ever made a video for free.” Every hand would go up... 

Producer/Director/Editor Robert Hanley
Then I would ask them to raise their hands if they had ever sold a video job but had not received as much as they wanted to receive in payment. This time virtually every hand would go up. What do we call this… undercharging and it is rampant in our industry. 

Ask yourself. Have you ever made a video for free? Have you ever worked for hours and hours on a video project for which you weren’t paid enough? If you have made some videos or if you are a pro already the answer is probably yes. There are a lot of reasons for this. For one thing our business is a creative business and in any creative business there is a huge tendency to give a way the store. The other consideration is all of the great software we use. It’s so easy to make a video and to add Hollywood effects. So of you are afraid or hesitant to charge appropriately. Furthermore, most people starting out have little or no frame of reference for pricing a video project. So they just pull numbers out of thin air. Usually that number is way too low. 

Once you start out by doing free and cheap jobs, it’s easy to get into the rut of giving video away for next to nothing. It’s habit forming! This is a really bad problem to have. 

At Home Video Studio we solve this problem. We call it “respecting the price.” When you come onboard with us one of the major things I do (personally) is to teach you how to price custom video productions. What’s the difference between a $500.00 video and a $1500.00 video? How about a $5000.00 video? $15,000? $20,000.00? How do you know what to consider in making up the price? How do you quote? How and why do you mark things up? How do you attach value? What are you worth? How do you present the price? And how do you get people to say yes and then pay you in advance. It’s easy, once you know what I know but first you have to believe 100% in your price, you’ve got to be able to back it up, and you have to be willing to walk away from any potential job. Here’s the most important point: you have to attach tons of value to your price. 

Value is the most important word here. The key to success in the video business is to understand how to price and how to provide value to go with your price. One of our secrets that I will share with you is this. We will teach you how to be so profitable that when you do quote a video production or editing job, it won’t bother you if you don’t get the job. That’s because you’ll be making so much money from all of our other profit centers that losing one or two jobs won’t make any difference. In fact, I will go one step further. I’ll teach you how to pick and choose only the most interesting (interesting to you) and the most profitable productions to quote. Your position grows stronger as you learn about the power of saying ‘no.”

One of my rules is to only price out jobs that you really want to be involved in – especially on the video production side. On the editing jobs… well let me put it this way: once you learn how to price video productions, pricing video editing is easy. 

So rule #1 on pricing and quoting out video jobs is this. First, get yourself and your company into a strong financial position. That will allow you to price and quote video jobs from a position of strength. You’ll get more jobs. You’ll be paid more and you will be much happier! The other part of rule #1 is to only get involved in the jobs you really like. 

...I’ll be taking about this and much more at my next HVS Show ‘N Tell Saturday in Houston on November 18. Contact me if you would like to attend. You can also call or email if you have questions on pricing and quoting video productions. 

Making great money and putting your company into a position of financial power is tops. I’ll be taking about this and much more at my next HVS Show ‘N Tell Saturday in Houston on November 18. Contact me if you would like to attend. You can also call or email if you have questions on pricing and quoting video productions. Want to schedule your own Show ‘N Tell and/or a trip to our Indianapolis headquarters? Call me at 1-317-358-5932. 

May the Force be with You!

Robert Hanley
President & Founder
Home Video Studio 

Monday, November 6, 2017

Transferring Home Movies 8mm & 16mm

I've loved home movies my whole life. Among my fondest memories growing up in Indiana are the times we dimmed the lights, made some popcorn, started the movie projector, and watched our family adventures on film.  I can still remember my Uncle Willard shouting at the screen: “Jump, Jump Robert.” and then laughing so loud! He thought it was so funny that as a two year old, I could not jump! Watching those old movies was the beginning of my love of movies and that's why I've been in this business for over thirty-five years.

Transferring home movies is a big part of running a Home Video Studio.  For those of you who don’t know me, I got into this business producing, directing and editing TV Commercials and corporate film and video. I used to edit film on my Moviola Flatbed in my mobile home! (We eventually moved out of that mobile home and I sold the Moviola in the late 1980s. But yes… I started my career cutting film.

So it is kind of fitting that film is a big part of our current business. We actually transfer the film for our studios here in Indianapolis. What kind of film comes in -
old 16mm from the 1920s through the 1980s and 8mm/Super 8mm from the 1940s to the 1980s. You are welcome to transfer your own film if you join us but we suggest you farm it out to us or some other vendor.

Why is film such a great profit center? Well for one thing Kodak sold zillions of feet of film in every state for a very long period of time. You’ll make money transferring the film and then possibly editing your customer’s film into valued added videos – LifeTIME videos, Family Histories, etc.

Oh and here is a cool item. If you are currently in business for yourself, you can outsource your film to us if you need to and you can also call me for advice. I would be happy to help you.

We put our film on DVA – Digital Video Archive www.DigitalVideoArchive.com and we still transfer to Platinum Archival DVDs. I hate distributing on thumbdrives but sometimes that is a necessary evil.

Technology has changed, but our memories of weddings, birthdays, graduations, vacations, holidays and more have not. These are precious and almost sacred images. There is still magic in dimming the lights, making popcorn, and reliving those adventures. It's the wheel of life. This is a wonderful business to be in. www.Myhomevideostudio.com.

May the Force be with You!

Robert Hanley
President & Founder
Home Video Studio 

Sunday, November 5, 2017

HVS Cinema Academy for aspiring Producers/Directors & Filmmakers Producing - Directing - Filmmaking

HVS Cinema Academy
for aspiring Producers/Directors & Filmmakers
Producing - Directing - Filmmaking
Nine Month Program
Twenty-six days training.
Cinema Basic Training - 3 Days
Filmmaker's Bootcamp- 2 Days
Casting & Pre Production - 3 Days
Adv Training Editing & Post Production 6 Days
Backlot! On Location Production - 6 Days
Final Edit & Première! - 6 days
Here's the 2018 Schedule! 
Registration Deadline is coming soon!
Space is limited!
Starting in January!
Cinema Basic Training - Indianapolis, IN
Three Days
We'll start out with the basics:
story, themes, one-sheet design, synopsis, scriptwriting, marketing, and pre-casting workshop.
Then we move on to
Filmmaker's Boot Camp in Hollywood, CA!
Two Days with
Producer/Director/Editor Frank Rohmer. You're going to learn the camera, tripod, lights, everything from the ground up. If you are going to produce and direct, you have to understand basic filming. Besides... it's fun!
Advanced Training in Indianapolis, Indiana!
Sunday, February 25 - Saturday, March 4
Six Days - It's our Mini College of Post!
At Advanced Training you'll go through editing and post-production classes that will prepare you for your Movie Trailer Production phase.
There's a formula to making a movie trailer just as there are formulas for making movies. The key is to employ the formula and break it at the same time. This is how truly great breakout and Oscar winning movies are made.
Central Casting and Pre-Production
Two Days at your location!
Casting is the most fun!
Backlot! Five Days at your location - your city.
Producer/Director Robert Hanley
and Cinematographer Chris Magee
Along with our Film Crew will work
with you as you produce, direct
and shoot your movie trailer.
Cinematographer Chris Magee
Producer/Director/Editor Robert Hanley
Final Edit and Premiere
Six Days at the 18th Annual Home Video Studio Getaway in Tucson, AZ!
This is six day total immersion into editing and post production.

It's the final stage of your
HVS Cinema Academy Experience.
You'll work with a hand-picked editor (if you need one) and complete your movie trailer.
We'll Premiere it at the 18th Annual Hanley Awards on July 28, 2017
Tired of retirement? Always wanted to Produce & Direct? This is your opportunity to learn the business from the ground up.