Alex Rozenblit is a fresh immigrant from Israel. With more than 10 years experience in TV and video production, he is now specialized in producing high-impact videos for tech startups at a reasonable price, incorporating eye-catching effects while making sure the right message is getting across.

Video professionals are very few in Montréal and the following article hopes to enlighten the process for tech entrepreneurs and CEOs.

NewTech (@heri) : Hi, Alexander, can you present yourself? Why are you interested in videos?

Alex : I have been working as a director for various Israeli TV channels for the last 12 years.

I have worked at HOT News, Sport 5, JCS productions and was a Chief Director at Channel 9. When this became annoying to me, I quit and started my own video production company called White Ink Film Productions.

Initially we started shooting corporate films for different companies, accepting every project just to get work. But I always wanted to concentrate on IT companies and startups. I’m interested in their products, I like to use them and I like to create videos about them. So eventually I wanted to focus mostly on video production for tech companies. When I moved to Montreal, I took my company with
me as well. Here is a video we made:

I have also made a few videos for sports crowdfunding company MAKEACHAMP:

@heri : Can you tell us in what ways can videos be beneficial for technology startups?

We live at the Internet age, when people are used to getting information very quickly. Usually they have neither the time nor the desire to read a bunch of text about your company.

Today, video is the fastest, most striking, and effective way to get people excited about your product and inspire them to use it.

In video, you can show your love for detail and convey the pleasure of using your product. Sometimes, words cannot describe what a video can show.

Besides, everyone knows about all the tests and research that confirm that video significantly increases your website’s conversion rate.

@heri : What would you like Montréal startups to do more in the video space?

I want to see a lot of Montreal’s startups grow to become big, successful companies. I want them to do what’s good for their businesses. And I have to say that video is a great marketing tool. If you use it the right way, it can bring you excellent results on social networks, websites, blogs, YouTube, landing pages, etc.

@heri : What are the top 3 startup videos that you like and that you would like startups to do?

My inspiration for startup videos is Adam Lisagor and his company, Sandwich Video. They’re very talented guys. I like almost all of their work. Here are a couple of examples:

I also enjoy the video made by Sway Productions for the company Alicanto. I really respect those video creators for their attention to detail. I always show this video to my customers. Unfortunately, no one has wanted to do something like this yet.

Live-action videos always engage a viewer than animation or motion graphics. If your film has a strong main character, a professional presenter or a charming girl, it will definitely attract more attention.

Now, it has become fashionable to shoot live-action video and, if necessary, integrate infographics into it. In my opinion, this is really cool. Today, everybody works with animation, and viewers are getting tired of it. Nevertheless, it can be done incredibly well, too.

@heri : For most startups, there’s a general misunderstanding on how you exactly make a video. A few think you brainstorm one hour and then get a Canon DSLR in the afternoon. Others believe it’s just about downloading a template somewhere on the web. Can you share with us the process on how to imagine, produce, shoot a video?

Well, nowadays, with the advent of new technologies, the cost and effort required to produce video has declined significantly. However, it is still a difficult and time-consuming process.

First, you need to develop a concept and write a script. The concept will define the budget for the video.

Then there are a number of different other preparations: recruiting a team of professionals, casting actors, searching for locations, deciding how to shoot certain scenes, creating of shooting list, storyboarding, selecting equipment, props, etc.

Further, the shooting is done by a professional team: director, producer, actors, director of photography, gaffer, sound man, assistants, etc.

Finally, it’s time for final post-production. This consists of video editing, creating GFX and VFX, recording narrative voiceover, selecting music or composing original music, applying sound FX and creating the sound mix, colour correction, etc.

The process is not simple, but it’s exciting!

@heri : What kind of budget should startups plan for a 3 minutes video? What makes it more or less expensive? This is an important question as most startups have a limited budget, if any.

I think that three minutes is too long for a video. It’s hard to hold a viewer’s attention for this long when you’re talking about a product. Usually startups videos are no longer than 1 minute and 30 seconds.

As for price … it depends on the idea, whether it’s live-action video or animation, which actors you invite, the equipment you use, how many shooting days, what sorts of video effects what you have in mind, etc. Many factors influence price. But I could identify three approximate price categories: $3K – $10K, $15K – $25K and $50K and higher. Sandwich video, for example, works in the last price category.

@heri : For a startup looking to do a video, what do you recommend to search and be prepared for?

Someone once said, “If it’s too expensive for you to hire a professional, try hiring an amateur.”

I totally agree with this statement. Don’t waste your money and effort on creating average videos that won’t bring you results. When you’re ready, hire talented professionals with good taste who will shoot an outstanding video for you.

Thanks for sharing the insights and knowledge Alex. For those looking for more information or work with Alex, you can contact aAlexander Rozenblit at alexander [at] whiteink.tv

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