Why treating your creative projects like products isn’t such a bad thing

There’s a point at which, as a creative, you make the decision to jump away from doing what you love in exchange for a few Instagram likes and positive comments on Facebook and start seeking financial (or similar) gain.

Unfortunately, this isn’t always the most liberating experience, often it’s the complete opposite. You trade the experience of taking a photo in an amazing location for sending invoices and generating leads. The edit you’ve put together suddenly seems tarnished because the client desperately wants to have their low-resolution logo front and centre.
I’ve come around completely on this, in this day and age if you are not prepared to treat your creative endeavours as products you cannot expect to get paid for them. So, when you answer the call of “I’m looking for a videographer to cover my upcoming event” your first meeting needs to cover exactly what the client is after. How do they want to be represented? What are their non-negotiables with the deliverable? When you send an edit through that doesn’t have your client’s logo on it because you believe your incredible drone footage that captures the sunrise over a mountain shouldn’t be interfered with, you’re doing the client a disservice.

This doesn’t mean bend over backwards for what the client wants, they’ve paid for your product and part of that service should be to advise them into what’s going to make a better piece of content. But find new and creative ways to integrate their brands, to make the client happy and represent your creativity in the best light. In the same way that you go to your hair dressers to cut your hair the way you want it, your client has come to you to make a video the way they want it, help them walk away with a decent hair cut!

On the opposite side, you’ll have your own non-negotiables, everyone has a point at which they no longer want to risk their artistic integrity. When you market yourself as a content creator you need to be clear about what you’re offering as a product. How far are you prepared to go away from what you deem a good product, is the client asking you to align with something that doesn’t fit your brand? Is the financial (or other) reward worth it?

When you define your product, when you detail what you’re selling to the market place, you’ll see that these are more or less personal values. What are you happy to make and at what cost. No matter how bespoke the content piece you make for your client is, it should be built off your product.

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By | 2017-08-11T10:45:42+00:00 August 11th, 2017|Creative, Design, Film, Industry Thoughts|