A Must-Have for Producing Great Content

After attending the 2018 IHAF Conference & Awards Show, we noticed that all of the keynote speakers had one thing in common—good work. Each presented their own game-changing video content and we loved it. Great content is what we all aspire to create, so, why is it so rare?

Sure, you’ve got a good idea. And, that’s a great start. In order to create quality content, however, the process needs to be managed by one key player. And that key player is your agency producer.

What to consider when selecting an agency producer.

Work with an award winner. Agency producers are essential. They manage the entire process and are responsible for making smart decisions throughout. As the IHAF conference speakers demonstrated, awards are benchmarks of good work. If a producer hasn’t won a Cannes, Effie, One Show, D&AD, or London Arrow, it’s unlikely that they’ll win one for you.

Choose partners carefully. A good agency producer will know how to find and sift through the right production partners for shoot, edit, mix, color and sound. There are over 10,000 vendor choices out there, and a seasoned producer will know the best of the best, as well as, be able to find that diamond in the rough. The best agency producers have the right connections and the latest databases to help you make smart vendor decisions quickly and efficiently.

What to expect from your producer/partner.

Scrutiny of every production decision. From locations to the importance of a good mix, bringing a concept to life can be a difficult and painstaking process. A good producer will never let the creative team feel the pain.

Protecting the budget and schedule. Agency producers certainly understand the entire production process, but equally important are their knowledge of rates/fees and ability to negotiate on your behalf. Don’t make the mistake of contacting a vendor directly; you won’t get the professionally negotiated deal only an experienced producer can deliver. A deal that can ultimately save you thousands if not tens of thousands of dollars.

Flagging potential problems. A seasoned producer should foresee a legal issue and bring in a business affairs expert if necessary. They know how to negotiate a celebrity contract and make sure you don’t get burned. They know how to get you the rights to “Sweet Home Alabama” for a steal. Legal issues and Intellectual Property rights can be extremely costly and create negative PR if handled improperly. If you’ve ever been sued for IP infringement, you know it’s painfully expensive. By working with an expert, you’ll protect your production and your company.

Utilizing every advantage—like state tax incentives. The filing and paperwork process for film tax breaks can appear daunting to the uninitiated, but the experienced producer will handle it for you—yielding $25K, $50K, even $100K back to the brand. Imagine handing your boss a $100K check? We’ve saved our clients big recently by shooting in Georgia and Illinois. The ever-changing incentive landscape offers exciting options every production should consider.

Cost-effectiveness. A good producer will show you where (and why) to spend money and where you can save. They know how to utilize the free market for the very best talent-to-efficiency ratio. A good producer will pay for their fee many times over.

If you’re not seeing your ideas fully realized or getting the cost efficiencies you suspect you should be, find a great producer. From the higher quality of your creative to cost savings, you’ll be happy you did.

John Noble and Brad Powell are the founders of Fixer Partners—a disrupter model which offers on-demand, scalable solutions for brands who aspire to create quality production for up to half the price of the traditional approach. Together, they have produced over 6,000 pieces of branded content, 100 GEICO commercials, five Super Bowl spots, and won hundreds of industry awards from Cannes Lions to Effies to One Show Pencils.  

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