Welcome to the Autumn 2023 issue!
“Never jump in a pile of leaves with a wet sucker.”
Linus, from It’s the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown
If you grew up, or are growing up, in a place where leaves fall, I’m sure you’ll appreciate this practical autumnal advice from our old pal Linus. Growing up in New Jersey, I always looked forward to autumn, with it’s great counterpoints of warm sun vs.crisp cool air, with the added crunch of fallen leaves underfoot. I’ll never forget the annual ritual of raking fallen leaves into multi-hued piles for collection by the city, and the sight and smell of our nextdoor neighbor burning his leaf piles. I’m sure I jumped into a mound of leaves once or twice – luckily, I never made the mistake of doing it while holding a wet lollipop!
I hope you enjoy this issue of the Family Legacy Video® e-Newsletter. Please e-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org or phone toll-free (888.662.1294) with any questions or comments you have.
Cheers! – – Steve Pender
Give the gift of life stories this holiday season.
This year, if you’re looking to give a special family member a gift that’s as unique as they are, consider a personal legacy video! A personal documentary is a present that keeps on giving, both now and for generations to come.
Family Legacy Video® is currently booking legacy video sessions for 2024. We’ll be honored to help you preserve, celebrate, and share the stories of that special storyteller in your family.
Family Legacy Video’s radio campaign continues.
After a short summer break, Family Legacy Video® is back on both the airwaves and audio stream of KDRI (The Drive) in Tucson.
Here’s a sample of one of our holiday-themed spots:
A legacy video costs how much?
(Family Legacy Video® gets lots of questions about the pricing for our legacy video productions, and many folks are surprised at our price points. We thought it would be worthwhile to share again this article, explaining how and why we price our services the way we do.)
I had just begun editing my latest video biography project on a recent morning when the phone rang.
I looped my headset over my right ear and hit the “talk” button. “Hello, Family Legacy Video,” I said.
“Hi,” said a gentleman on the other end of the line. “I’ve heard that legacy videos can cost in the thousands of dollars. Is that really true?”
He explained that he’d just started to research costs for a personal legacy video he wanted to create in order to share his life stories with his family, but was feeling like a “deer in the headlights” in reaction to the prices he was being quoted.
I told him that, yes, budgets for video biographies do fall in the thousands, and not hundreds, of dollars, and gave him a brief explanation as to why. So when we hung up he was certainly better informed, although I’m sure still disappointed at the cost.
His reaction was pretty common. Most folks have no idea what it takes to produce a professional, high-quality video; thanks to the proliferation of affordable consumer video gear over the years, many people have gotten the impression that creating video is cheap.
Well, it ain’t. And I thought I’d devote a few words in this article to describing why it’s not unusual for simple video biographies to start around $7,500 and prices for higher-end, documentary-style legacy videos to begin between $20,000 and $25,000 and to go even higher from there.
LET’S PUT THINGS IN CONTEXT
Hour-long documentaries produced for outlets like the National Geographic and Discovery channels have budgets ranging from $125,000 on up. A single segment on 60 Minutes can cost $200,000. Family Legacy Video’s personal video biographies rival those network productions in quality and usually run longer than an hour – sometimes much longer. So even if a legacy video clocks in at $40,000 to $50,000, that’s a pretty good deal compared to what those broadcast and cable productions cost.
Not everybody can afford these prices, of course. But for those who can, it’s a great, great value.
SO WHAT AM I PAYING FOR?
Producers with years of expertise organizing and planning video biography projects. Skilled interviewers and seasoned and creative video editors. Experienced camera operators and lighting directors, audio technicians, and makeup artists devoted to making you look and sound your very best on screen. Family Legacy Video® crew members are talented professionals who need to be compensated accordingly.
So people are on thing – gear is another. Professional cameras, lenses, lighting and audio equipment in our experienced hands yields fantastic results – but cost much more than consumer gear to purchase and maintain.
And then there’s travel. While Family Legacy Video® is based in Tucson, a large chunk of our productions are shot outside Arizona. I’ve traveled to the east and west coasts, points between, even points beyond, like Hawaii and even Italy. Travel incurs expenses like airfare, car rental, hotel rooms, meals, etc. It’s only fair to include these costs on top of the production expense – if not, Family Legacy Video® could easily lose tons of money on each video. And yet, a lot of prospective clients seem to think this is somehow unfair, or they just want to save money by trying to find someone local to them, or they just don’t like the idea of paying for someone else’s travel expenses, as if our crew is taking a vacation at the client’s expense. Just to be clear, we travel as economically as possible, meaning we squeeze into coach airplane seats, we stay in moderately-priced hotels, and we don’t raid the mini-bars.
Finally, custom legacy videos are time-consuming efforts that can easily run into the hundreds of hours.
So, do I wish everyone could afford Family Legacy Video’s services? Boy howdy, I sure as heck do. But the company needs to price productions at a level that compensates us fairly and allows us to stay in business.
Whether you can afford to hire Family Legacy Video® or you opt to go it yourself, the key is not to wait – get started on your video biography now!
– Steve Pender
On the Legacy Video Lounge Podcast: Talkin’ Legacy Videos
If you ever wanted to hear a legacy video pro dish about all aspects of personal history videos, from the benefits to the production process and everything in-between, you’re in luck! You’ll find just what you’re looking for in Episodes 22-25 of the Legacy Video Lounge Podcast’s Talkin’ Legacy Videos series. Each episode features a spirited discussion, during which Family Legacy Video’s president, Steve Pender, responds to legacy video-related questions from Tucson-based writer Elena Acoba. They’ll help you to better understand what legacy videos are all about – and help you get to know the guy who is the driving force behind Family Legacy Video®. You’ll want to listen to these podcasts!