Episode 10

How to calculate the quote for a video project

There are times when the budget for a project has already been established. Other times, however, an estimated budget is requested, but how do you be sure of how much to ask for? How do you calculate a proper quote?
We use a table that we compile, where we have entered all the elements that make up a production. Next to each element, we calculate and insert its cost. In this way we keep track of each specific expense and at the end, all we have to do is find the total.
Being precise means that we are more conscious and consequently more sure of what we will ask of the client.

The elements that make up the budget for a video project

  1. Pre-production: The time needed to research the concept, location scouting, set-up preparation, video writing, shooting list, location costs, administration and logistics, costume costs if there are any, everything that is done before the days of production, the shooting phase.
  2. Travel: These are the costs of travel and accommodation.
  3. Equipment: These are the daily costs of each piece of equipment you have, if these are considered investments to be amortized. In addition, equipment rental is also added here.
  4. Production Crew: This is where you calculate the costs of who will be handling the different tasks during production. For example director, cinematographer, foley, etc.
  5. Actors/models: The cost of the actors and models in the project, and their travel costs.
  6. Location/props: The cost of location, permits, props if needed, meals for lunch breaks, etc. should be calculated here.
  7. Post-production: The time spent on all those actions that are done after production is calculated here, such as backup, track research, editing, color correction, sound design, for any changes… Also music licensing costs.

At the end of the compilation of this table, you can do the sum and you will then have the total video project’s budget.

How to submit an estimated budget

Rather than sending the quotation as the text of an e-mail (which can be unprofessional), we recommend that you create a precise pdf document, done well graphically, with a summary of the costs. You don’t have to write all the aspects listed, many of them are not of interest to the client, but you can make a summary of all the phases with their costs. We leave you an example here that you can download and have as a reference.

Watch the previous lesson.
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