If you’re in the market for a video digitizing service you likely already know there are an abundance of respectable providers.
It might seem easiest to just throw up your hands and play pin the tail on the donkey, but by asking a few key questions, you can effectively narrow down the field.
Trust us, it’s worth the effort. Many times, we find clients are dealing with irreplaceable archives of important film footage. The damage caused by a mistake from a careless firm would be serious!
So before you hand your archival footage over to a 3rd party, do your research, and make sure to look closely at the following.
Determine Where the Digitization Will Occur
It might not seem like this matters, but many digitizing services will outsource the actual work to a 3rd party. Sometimes this is even done overseas.
We recommend looking for a service that is US-Based, and that will do the digitization in house, in their own facility.
This will help minimize the number of hands your video archives need to pass through, travel time, and thus the risk of accidents!
Examine Media Safety Procedures
Speaking of safety… it’s worth looking under the hood to learn more about your vendor’s safety procedures.
How will they work to protect your media? How will they avoid any possibility of confusing some of another client’s footage with some of yours?
These sound like questions you’d hardly need to ask, but you might be surprised. Some vendors have extremely lax protocols as far as organization is concerned.
Furthermore, you probably want to know how secure the facility is. If it’s protected from theft, fires, and floods. If you’re at all able, we’d encourage you to ask for a tour of the facility before signing any agreements.
Ask About Guarantees
Many video digitization companies offer guarantees. Many others will not.
There’s no cut and dry answer to whether you should require a guarantee or not, but you should at least ask. Your ultimate decision should probably depend on how sensitive or valuable your archival video actually is.
At the very least, take a look at your prospective vendors’ online presence. Read some reviews, and try to assess how focused they are on customer satisfaction.
Find Out What Digital Video Conversion Equipment Will Be Used
Unfortunately, not all video conversion equipment is created equal.
There are top-of-the-line examples that are built to last and ensure expected results. And there are also budget-focused alternatives that have less than stellar reputations.
It can take some digging to get this information, but we believe it’s worth it.