If you go out and try to get a TV commercial made, you will find that we are still in the throes of a transition from standard definition (SD) to high definition (HD). In primetime, most of the national spots are now in HD. But in daytime, many local commercials are still in SD that looks terrible on newer TV sets. Ideally, what you want is to have your commercial produced and run in HD. People watching it on an old SD set would see it in SD, just like they see everything else. But the newer sets would show your spot in all its HD glory!
That’s still not the way it works for many local advertisers right now. For one thing, local production companies and even TV stations sometimes gouge their customers who want HD production. Then there is the impossibility of getting a local station to run an HD spot if they don't yet have the proper equipment. Unfortunately, all we can do about that is wait for everybody to get with the program. Meanwhile, we produce our spots so that they are compatible with SD as well as HD broadcasting. And for my clients, I make production of their spots in HD extremely affordable.
Norm Wright Video. My long-time cameraman and editor, Norm Wright, has started his own video production service, Norm Wright Video. He and I are collaborating to provide affordable HD shooting and editing, using the latest professional hardware and software. So, when I make a spot for my clients, I write, produce and direct it but the actual hands-on shooting and editing is something I do in association with Norm. He is incredibly good at it and he and I have developed an excellent working relationship over the decade or so we have been shooting and editing commercials together.
We have purchased some great, new equipment. We're the proud owners of a state-of-the-art Sony professional HD video camera, an EX1R. With this baby, we can shoot your commercials in 1080i or 720p HD. We edit using Final Cut Pro, the latest version of Apple’s professional post-production software.
What about costs? First of all, if you are a Gary Davis Media client, you will get the same deal from me that you always have. Any commercials I make for my clients, for placement on TV stations by my agency, I will make for my actual cost, not a penny more. I make my living from the 15% agency discount I get from TV stations for placement, not from production for my clients. So, you can expect your production costs, through my agency, to be about the same as they were when we shot in SD, except that I will be producing your spots in HD, which is also compatible with SD-only local stations.
If you are not a client of Gary Davis Media, or any other agency for that matter, you can still come to us for production. Check with your local production houses to find out what they would charge to shoot a spot for you, then let's talk to Norm about what it would cost if we did it!
We can shoot in the studio here in Austin, using green-screen technology, so that, in post-production, we can put you or your spokesperson in front of just about any background you can imagine. We can shoot on location, in your offices or elsewhere. We use both studio and on-location teleprompters and we have many decades of combined experience making the shooting process not only easy but fun.
As part of our packages, we always include audio enhancement of your commercials for broadcast TV. Ever notice how the audio of national commercials “pops” out of your TV speakers, then a local commercial comes on and it sounds dull and hard-to-hear? That’s because the big ad agencies spend huge amounts of money having their audio enhanced for TV. We use the services of an excellent northern California audio mastering studio, to make your commercials sound just as good as national spots, but at only a tiny percentage of what big ad agency clients have to pay New York and L.A. audio production houses to do it. Your spots will sound great!
So, if you have a production project that you would like to run by us, please send us an email. Describe in some detail what you have in mind. Give us a phone number where somebody can get back to you. Let’s see what we can do.