Our Music Video Production Process

Music Videos are a substantial part of a musician's creative vision.

 Having a music video boosts the artist's visibility and exposure exponentially. From a marketing perspective, music videos are used to promote the sale of an artist's work. By telling a story, it encourages the audience to listen and draws in their attention, persuading them to buy/save it.

The first 4 questions we ask before writing an estimate for a music video are:

  1.     Can we hear the track?
  2.     What’s the size of your social media following?
  3.     Do you have a concept in mind or are you looking to us for guidance?
  4.     What’s your budget?


Music videos are essential for the visibility and exposure of an artist, and they can be an effective tool to promote the sale of their work. To create an estimate for a music video, there are some crucial questions that must be answered, such as whether the production team can hear the track, the size of the artist's social media following, whether the artist has a concept in mind, and what their budget is. These questions will help us to understand the project and with whom they will be working.

Listening to the song helps our team evaluate whether the song has commercial viability or strong viral potential. If our team likes the song, we are more likely to invest in it by offering reduced crew rates, extra editing hours, or sweat-equity investment in gear. If we do not connect with the song or judge that the final product won't have legs from a viewership standpoint, we will typically pass.

The size of an artist's social media following will determine whether producing a music video is worth the investment. Low numbers will translate into lower viewership, and it may be better to self-produce a few videos to build a larger fan base before investing in a high-end video.

Concept development is critical to the success of a music video, and our production team will assess how much it will cost to realize the artist's vision. If the artist does not have a concept in mind, the production team will determine what concepts they can execute effectively with the available funds, which leads to the final question: the budget.

The music video production budget determines almost everything about the production and post-production processes, including the concept, locations, gear, shooting time, and editing time. A good location will typically cost at least $1,500 for 10-12 hours. Gear, lighting, and support equipment choices have different pricing, and editing, color grading, animation, and compositing are all part of the package but could cost more depending on your needs.

It is important to ask these questions to create a successful music video that will reach a wider audience and promote the artist's work effectively.

What kind of gear will we use?

There are a plethora of high-quality professional camera options, countless lights with widely varied wattages and color temperatures, and a myriad of support equipment choices, all of which creates a multitude of options for directors and DPs. All these choices have different pros and cons and, most importantly, different pricing. Typically, we provide 03 6K cameras outfitted with our cine-lenses kit, lighting and grip package, motion control (3 axis stabilizer) and slider track.   

Editing and motion graphics are included. It does not include make-up, wardrobe, craft-service or casting of extras. But we do provide these services for a nominal fee.

How long will you have to shoot the video?

Most music videos will take at least ten hours (one full day) to shoot, but some will take significantly longer, especially if there are a lot of different locations. Because our gear and crew rates are all based around time, the longer you shoot the more it will cost.

5. How long will it take to edit the video?

The amount of time it takes to edit a music video can vary based on the complexity of the concept, the number of cameras used, the total amount of footage captured, the need for animation or special effects, and color grading to name just a few. Editing, color grading, animations, and compositing are all typically billed at an hourly rate. At Rocket House Pictures we tend to fall within the median price range in the Denver area. Normally it takes from 1 week to 2 weeks to present the client with a first draft.

6. Food, beverage, and snack costs: (AKA Craft Services)

Almost no one outside the production business thinks about this, but on set you need to buy food & drink not only for the crew but for the cast and in some cases the client/investor as well. A crew of ten on a hot day can burn through beverages and ice quickly.  Combine that with one (sometimes two) meals in a day, plus snacks, and costs can add up quickly. Even having your mom make food will still have some cost associated with it.  

Create a multi-dimensional experience, giving the audience a truly sensational experience.

All that said, we absolutely LOVE making music videos.  We are not just slapping something together here: this is a full production, from lighting to color grading. We have produced music videos for local and international artists in the past and some of these videos have been accepted by renowned film festivals. We just won’t take on a project that we can’t make successful. The reality is that the proper amount of money and resources is the key to making any video endeavor successful. The music business has changed drastically over the years and a good music video can be the cornerstone of creating your band’s online image. Recently Billboard even started calculating their charts based on internet views, downloads, and listens. A great music video is an opportunity. It’s a business expense and must be funded properly.

If you’re interested in producing a music video, please don’t hesitate to contact Rocket House Pictures. We’d love to help you make your vision a reality and tell the story of your song with the power of the moving image!

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