Wedding videography has taken on a life of its own in recent years. Every bride and groom wants everything from the “getting ready” process to their grandma cutting a rug on the dancefloor captured for a lifetime. That’s why 98% of brides believe everyone should have a videographer at their wedding.
But, what about the magical moment that kicks off wedding planning?
Proposal photography isn’t necessarily anything new, but capturing a marriage proposal as a videographer will give that couple incredible memories to last a lifetime and a moment they can share with their loved ones. If you can specialize in capturing marriage proposals, it’s definitely something that will help your portfolio and cause you to stand out.
That means more bookings.
With that being said, engagements are very personal and intimate. The last thing you want to do is show up with a bulky camera and ruin the surprise. So, what can you do to capture proposals in a professional way that still harnesses the emotion and love felt in the moment?
Get Comfortable With Your Clients
If you’ve done wedding videos before, you know how important it is for everyone to be comfortable and natural. Sometimes, it takes a while for people to ignore the camera and unfamiliar person walking around. Eventually, though, most couples and their guests can go about the special day without even realizing they’re being recorded.
Proposal videography is a bit different because you’ll probably only be working with one half of the couple. So, it’s important to develop a professional (but casual) relationship with that person. Meet with your client in person at least once, if possible. Talking face-to-face can take a lot of the pressure off of them and make them more comfortable with your presence.
You can also do your part by helping them through the proposal process and what will look/sound good. Your suggestions might include things like:
- Avoiding certain locations that are too noisy or crowded
- Choosing a specific time of day
- Wearing the right clothes
- Having a place with plenty of “hiding” spots
It’s also a good idea to talk to them about their proposal speech. Obviously, that’s something that needs to come from their heart. But, you can offer some etiquette tips when it comes to what will sound good on video and what will make the moment even more magical and memorable.
The more comfortable your client feels, the more natural the proposal and video will be, so be sure to share your insight and clue them in on what to expect.
Take Time to Prepare
Once you’ve talked things over with your client, it’s time to do a bit of your own prep work. One of the best things you can do is location scouting. If your client didn’t have a specific location in mind, you can look around locally for some places that will look great on film without too many distractions.
Often, however, clients will have a particular place where they want to propose. It might have sentimental value, like where the couple went on their first date. Unfortunately, some locations aren’t ideal for shooting a quality video, so preparing in advance will help you capture something great even if you’re not in the perfect spot.
For example, if your client wants to propose in a restaurant or another small, enclosed space, your goal should be to make the room seem bigger. You can do that by trying different techniques like:
- Looking for bright colors to focus on or adding decor if you can
- Rearranging pieces of furniture
- Optimizing the space with existing decorations
- Strategically using accents in the room to make it look larger
No matter where the location is, another thing to look for is a place to stay hidden. You’ll want to be close enough to hear what’s being said, but out of sight so you won’t invade the moment. After the proposal, you can come out of your hiding spot and get some great video moments with the future married couple. Don’t forget to capture the essence of their location, especially if it was chosen for a purpose.
A little strategizing ahead of time will go a long way and make you more comfortable with the gig. Knowing more about the location will not only prepare you, mentally, but it will help you decide which gear to bring, how to dress, and how early you need to get there before the proposal actually happens.
Make the Delivery Special
When you’re doing anything with weddings, it’s a good idea to go the extra mile with your marketing efforts. The “magic” doesn’t need to stop at the proposal itself. When you’ve finished editing everything and you’re ready to deliver it to your clients, you have a few different options.
One is to give them access to a private cloud. These are password-protected and will instantly give both you and your client access to the video. It’s their choice, then, to share it with family and friends or keep it to themselves. One of the benefits of digitally offering the video is that it won’t get damaged and will last forever.
You can also give them a physical copy on a disc or USB drive and mail it or deliver it in person. Many wedding videographers package their hard copies in special boxes or envelopes with a few “extras”, including dried flowers, small decorative items, or a handwritten card or note.
Whatever you decide to do, make it your goal for your clients to feel just as special when they receive the video as the day the proposal happened. Adding those “magic” touches is a great marketing technique, and a way to nearly ensure that couple will pass your name and business on to family members and friends. Word of mouth advertising is crucial for videographers, and it’s the small touches that make a big difference.
The marriage proposal video industry is still widely untapped. If you’re already shooting weddings, try adding this unique option to your resume and portfolio, and you’re likely to capture a lot of interested (even if they’re nervous about proposing) clients.
Author: Jori Hamilton
Jori Hamilton is an experienced writer residing in the Northwestern U.S. She covers a wide range of subjects but takes a particular interest in covering topics related to video production, content creation, and marketing strategies. To learn more about Jori, you can follow her on Twitter: @HamiltonJori