You're thinking about building a new home. You decide to send an email to a general contractor. You write a note that goes something like this...
"I'd like to have a new home built. How much would it cost to build a home with six rooms, two bathrooms, a small garage, and a nice yard? Please tell me how long will it take to build it. Thank you."
It's pretty likely you won't get a response that is helpful or accurate. And chances are it won't move your vision forward.
Believe it not, I've seen emails like this requesting how much a video project will cost. So have many other producers.
The simple solution, of course, is to pickup the phone and call a producer. Share your idea to see if your vision can be turned into an opportunity.
When it comes time to begin a new video project, a model worth considering comes from marketing expert and Fast Company writer, Nick Rice. Nick has a fabulous riff on determining the reality of an opportunity. Nick calls it "The Opportunity Framework."
Nick's framework has three components.
1. Determine if there is a real problem that needs to be solved.
2. Determine if there is an opportunity to move the project forward.
3. Determine if enough resources are available.
I think this is a great framework to quickly evaluate weather or not to move the conversation forward.
Send an email?
I've found most filmmakers love a good conversation :-)
P.S. This post was inspired by another headline challenge from Brian Clark over at Copyblogger.