There is a myth about preproduction that undermines its use due to an oversimplified idea of its purpose.
Many think preproduction is the process of figuring out how to do a project. While this is an important aspect, preproduction cannot be summed up as simply answering the “how to” question. Instead, the primary purpose is to answer the more important questions of “what” and “why.” Proper preproduction communicates the purpose of the project to everyone involved and ensures they are all operating from the same playbook.
This view is important to maximizing its benefits to your project. When you focus on the top-level ideas of your project and begin to answer the question of “why,” production crews will also gain this focus. Working with your client to answer “why” and “what” will give you invaluable information and insight to your production.
Working on projects without preproduction feels like you are a blindfolded runner trying to find the trail; it’s slow going and often painful. Without it, projects will lack a purpose and direction, ultimately ending in an incomplete video without a clear message.
Yet many people skip preproduction in order to save time and money. However, this almost always has the opposite effect with projects snowballing with troubles.
Preproduction is the glue that fosters the teamwork necessary for a project to come in on time and in budget. More importantly, this centralized focus on the key questions is crucial to creating a standard of excellence in your work and producing clear videos that communicate exactly what the client wants.
In short, preproduction is so important because it provides the ideas you need to create a coherent final product of which everyone can be proud.
What benefits have you found with preproduction? Tell us in the comments below, or tweet your responses using the hashtag #mcgblog.