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How To Sell Your Video Footage Online

I stumbled across an interesting statistic recently.

Apparently, US adults spend approximately 6 hours every day watching video content.

Now, I’m pretty sure that number is skewed a bit thanks to thousands of people binge watching their favorite TV shows all the time (lazy layabouts!) but it got me thinking.

A lot of content you come across these days is enriched with a video – posts, articles, landing pages, and more. A lot of that content is exclusively video – commercials, infomercials, YouTube ads, and others.

How much of the video we watch is actually stock video, made and sold in bulk to stock platforms and thousands of users around the world?

If it’s only 1 % that means that there’s a huge market for it out there.

Everyone with a good quality camera and an interest in videography can make a buck selling their videos to stock platforms.

Selling Video Footage Online Is Easy!

Why is Selling Stock Video a Great Way to Make Money Online?

Stock video is a great source of income because it’s not difficult to take establishing shots that are going to be licensed out numerous times on stock sites. That means that you can potentially earn a lot of money from just one minute of video. Of course, this rarely happens but it doesn’t mean that you can’t hit the jackpot.

Although shooting videos requires quality equipment, you could, conceivably, recoup your cost rather quickly. Depending on how you sell your videos (exclusively on one platform or un-exclusively on several different platforms) you can earn anywhere between $5 to $10 per sale.

Who Can Make and Sell Stock Video Online?

In theory, everyone can do it.

However, I would recommend that you have some experience and/or willingness to learn the trade before you invest in equipment.

Stock videos can be a great way to complement your income if:

  • You’re already in the business (cameraman, video editor, photographer)

  • You have a quality HD camera for some reason and some spare time

  • You have an interest to learn and develop before you make an investment

Where to Start

Well, start by realizing that the road to success might be a bumpy one in this business. There’s probably a lot that you’re going to have to learn and the business (trends in videos used) is constantly changing.

If you’re up for it, follow these steps:

  • STEP 1 – Find out what’s selling by contacting video stock sites and studying the bestsellers

  • STEP 2 – Do your math – calculate how much time you’re going to need to break-even and cover your costs and decide if it’s worth your time

  • STEP 3 – Enroll in a videography course or study from the free material available online

  • STEP 4 – Devote part of your time to mundane shots (people walking around, typing on the computer, night skyline of busy cities – that sort of footage is always in demand)

  • STEP 5 – try to work with professional models if possible – your shots will be much better

  • STEP 6 – Focus on quality

  • STEP 7 – Partner with several different video stock platforms

  • STEP 8 – Review your revenue and determine whether you are better off working with one platform – exclusivity will get you 40-50 % of the sales, non-exclusivity 25-30 %

  • STEP 9 – Market your work on social media platforms but also make sure that the platform you’re working with is doing its fair share to promote your work on their page

  • STEP 10 – Don’t sell your work outright, license it

Recommended Resources

1. Videography Courses and Learning Materials Studio Daily | Wikiversity | VideoMaker 2. Video Stock Sites Shutterstock | iStock | 123RF | Dreamstime

Video is in high demand these days so grab your camera (not your phone!) and start recording – you never know when you might get that money shot!


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