Video Producer Job Description
Video producers create film and video projects such as commercials, documentaries, training videos, and other visual media. They often work for corporations, arts organizations, or non-profit groups, though some are independent and take on individual assignments. This job requires in-depth knowledge of various aspects of filmmaking and extensive hands-on experience, in addition to formal training at a college or university. This high-pressure role requires overseeing multiple elements and potentially working long hours to meet deadlines.
Video Producer Duties and Responsibilities
A video producer coordinates a film project from start to finish, and whether they work in the commercial or artistic sphere, they focus on using artistic elements to communicate a message. While not all video producer jobs are alike, we found several core tasks common to most:
Choose Production Elements
As the one who brings an idea to the screen, a video producer chooses equipment and other tools that fit this vision. They select all camera, audio, and lighting equipment, in addition to editing software and other computer programs. In addition, they scout locations and oversee everything from wardrobe to set design.
Video producers often hire other team members such as editors, videographers, stylists, actors, and more. They also assign tasks and create schedules for all cast and crew involved, including deadlines for the project and for individual workers.
Video projects typically have several budgets, including for hiring cast and crew, for securing rights and licenses, for purchasing props and equipment, and for gaining access to shooting locations. Video producers set the budgets for each of these areas and track spending along the way.
Secure Rights and Licensing
Sometimes completing a film project requires using material from other sources, such as music or video footage. Video producers ask permission to use this material and ensure everything is obtained legally.
Collaborate with Other Departments
A successful video project requires the efforts of everyone in the company, and the video producer works closely with other teams, such as collaborating with the public relations department or social media editors to promote the project.
Video Producer Skills and Qualifications
Video producers draw on both their creativity and their ability to see the big picture and think long term. Employers typically seek candidates who have a film degree, at least two to five years of experience, and the following skills:
- Video production experience – video producers oversee every aspect of bringing a film to life, requiring several years of hands-on experience with all of these elements
- Research skills – as the driving force behind a film project, video producers often research content for the films they produce and may also proofread, edit, and fact-check scripts
- Video editing – video producers must be able to take the finished project and polish it into something that represents the company well or appeals to the target audience
- Collaboration – they also work closely with every other member of the team, from directors to screenwriters to actors. They unify the team and also consult with outside parties such as investors
- Organization skills – time management and planning skills are essential to this role, because video producers set the timeline for the project and assign tasks to the team. They keep track of every aspect of the production and ensure deadlines are met
Tools of the Trade
Video producers use the following tools regularly. They need proficiency and significant experience with each:
- Video editing software (Adobe Premiere, After Effects, Photoshop)
- Cameras (video and DSLR)
- Lighting equipment
- Audio equipment
Video Producer Education and Training
Video producers need at least a bachelor’s degree in a field such as film, video production, or broadcasting. Some may complete degrees in related fields such as theater or arts management. They typically start out working as assistants at movie or film studios or for arts management agencies, then work their way up as they gain experience behind the camera or by managing productions or artists.
Video Producer Salary and Outlook
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), video producers earn a median annual salary of $71,620. At the top of the pay scale, video producers in the upper 10 percent earn more than $164,290; at the lower end, those in the bottom 10 percent earn less than $33,730. The BLS expects employment opportunities for video producers to increase 12 percent through 2026, which is a faster rate of growth than for other professions.
If you’re ready to launch your career as a video producer, we have some of the top resources from around the web to help you on your way. From professional associations to guides written by industry insiders, this list has everything you need to get started and grow your career:
Association of Independent Commercial Producers – not all video producers work full time for one company, and this professional association connects them with training opportunities such as seminars and bootcamps, as well as networking opportunities and guides to legal and business issues
Producers Guild of America – this industry association connects producers from all mediums, including film, television, and the internet. The guild offers awards, fellowships, and networking opportunities
So You Want to Be a Producer – this book from movie veteran Lawrence Turman, producer of The Graduate, breaks down the film production process from developing an idea to presenting it to investors or audiences
Video Producer Red-Hot Career Guide – snag the video producer job of your dreams with this comprehensive guide to interviewing that teaches you how to showcase your strengths and what you can offer employers
Video Production 101: Delivering the Message – this beginner’s guide to video production offers guidance on sound, lighting, idea development, editing, and every other aspect of creating a film or video project
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