pancakes

MicrostockGroup Sponsors

Envato Elements

Author Topic: New Stock Video How To Site for Beginners: stockvideoseller.com  (Read 17084 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

« on: December 07, 2010, 08:32 »
0
I would like to announce a new website devoted to beginners in the stock video footage industry, www.stockvideoseller.com. The site contains articles and tutorials on key-wording, researching ideas and concepts, the top recommended sites for maximum sales and a "what sells and why" segment and more. Interviews with industry professionals and successful and aspiring stock video sellers - perhaps just like you.

It's a new site, and in development, so your comments and reviews are greatly appreciated!


« Reply #1 on: December 07, 2010, 08:47 »
0
Do you sell stock video?

« Reply #2 on: December 07, 2010, 16:07 »
0
Transparency is everything when writing a blog, and the first thing I want to see before i read anything is your portfolio - i want to see that you do great stuff, so I know that Im listining to someone who knows what he is talking about...you have a link to your videos?

good luck!

« Reply #3 on: December 07, 2010, 16:45 »
0
Istock sell much less than Pond5 and Revostock for me, so I can't agree with "High downloads".  Perhaps the caption should be "15% Royalty, don't bother".  And I don't think they have a referral payment for contributors anymore.

« Reply #4 on: December 07, 2010, 17:33 »
0
"High Downloads" is a crappy rational to submit to a site that only pays 15% and the corporate fat cats walk away with 85% of your work! There is just no upside to that kind of thinking. I strongly encourage people to contribute and build portfolios with business partners that treat contributors fairly.

jbarber873

« Reply #5 on: December 07, 2010, 17:43 »
0
"High Downloads" is a crappy rational to submit to a site that only pays 15% and the corporate fat cats walk away with 85% of your work! There is just no upside to that kind of thinking. I strongly encourage people to contribute and build portfolios with business partners that treat contributors fairly.

  I can understand your point of view, but here's how I look at it right now, ( and that could change). If you go to buy a full resolution video at Istock, the price is pretty high. I may get 15% of that, but the price integrity, that is, what a file costs to the end user, is pretty high. So at this point, they are not damaging the value of the basic product, I'm just not getting a good share. What I am getting is a share of a very high volume website when you compare views to other sites. Istock has a different client from Pond5, I think, although I have no data to back that up. So a more sophisticated buyer might go to Pond5, but a designer or ad agency that is just starting to try video may start at Istock, netting me a client i would not have a shot at with Pond5. That's my logic or what passes for logic with Istock. And I really don't care about corporate fat cats, they are just a fact of life, and they are everywhere.

KB

« Reply #6 on: December 07, 2010, 18:17 »
0
Talking about damaging the value of the basic product, why do so many contributors price their HD videos at such low prices on Pond5? For that matter, why doesn't Pond5 have a higher minimum price for HD videos? I love Pond5, but I do not like the low pricing.

« Reply #7 on: December 07, 2010, 18:19 »
0
jbarber873

That point of view is fair enough. However if serious video contributors would only build their portfolios with better paying agencies the clients would certainly follow. As the microstock video market becomes saturated the price pressure will certainly be downwards. 15% of $90 is very low, 15% of $50 - 30 - 20 would be nuts.

« Reply #8 on: December 07, 2010, 19:09 »
0
Hey, you know what doesn't help?  "websites devoted to beginners in the stock video footage industry" - nothing like the classic "train your competitors website"...

Oh heck, I just checked the site.  It's just a referral grab site.  Sigh.

« Reply #9 on: December 07, 2010, 20:54 »
0
I am the author of the original post. Thanks for those who have responded! It's a lively forum, I can see. Lots of the issues you have brought up, are one's I've been involved in for the last few years. I'll respond to the comments one by one.

"Hey, you know what doesn't help?  "websites devoted to beginners in the stock video footage industry" - nothing like the classic "train your competitors websiteOh heck, I just checked the site.  It's just a referral grab site.  Sigh. "..."

I like to think it's more than a referral grab site. I wanted to make the site content intensive - a place where those starting out could come and initiate the process without making the time consuming mistakes I did. I don't think there's much control over the rising tide of contributors or the pressures on downward pricing which a glutted marketplace in most easy to shoot subject areas. The days of point and shoot and sell are rapidly closing. No retreat into a guild mentality or restricted market of any kind is going to be possible. If you can't beat them, help them! For those of us who make a living doing this, as I do, the future - probably the only possible income future - is in finding market niches and increasing production values, not restricting competition.

"That point of view is fair enough. However if serious video contributors would only build their portfolios with better paying agencies the clients would certainly follow. As the microstock video market becomes saturated the price pressure will certainly be downwards. 15% of $90 is very low, 15% of $50 - 30 - 20 would be nuts."

I respectfully disagree. I think most of those agencies paying larger royalties are not worth the contributors time. The market is not wishful thinking, but real. You can track it. And according to the numbers I get back, or most reports of similar sellers it's divided up with only several real players. (The exception being Pond5 with it's 50% payout and freewheeling style). If you explore the site you see the information I provide justifies this statement and you can see it in the stats digging via the links on Blogs like Orlinksi.

"Talking about damaging the value of the basic product, why do so many contributors price their HD videos at such low prices on Pond5? For that matter, why doesn't Pond5 have a higher minimum price for HD videos? I love Pond5, but I do not like the low pricing."

Go into the Pond5 search bar and type in Apple Orchard on default search. See what comes up. 350 apple orchard clips. Some sell on sheer production value, 50 % some on price. Most are redundant with multiple clips of the same scene or subject. The only way any of these glutted clips (besides the ones which are outstanding in some way) is on price. Downward pressure on prices is real and not personal. Welcome to the future!

""High Downloads" is a crappy rational to submit to a site that only pays 15% and the corporate fat cats walk away with 85% of your work! There is just no upside to that kind of thinking. I strongly encourage people to contribute and build portfolios with business partners that treat contributors fairly."

"Istock sell much less than Pond5 and Revostock for me, so I can't agree with "High downloads".  Perhaps the caption should be "15% Royalty, don't bother".  And I don't think they have a referral payment for contributors anymore."

High downloads at iStockphoto translate into half my income stream. Although Pond5 has recently replaced iStock in payouts for me as well. It's number two now (but I doubt that will stay the same, as the low bar to entry on Pond5 ensures every topic will becomes saturated). It's a lot of money every month, month on month, year on year. iStock is a hassle, certainly, but if you play it right, learn to work it and work through it - it makes you a large payout every month. Read the iStockphoto review for more on this. Every site (the viable ones) have different markets - a different buying public. What sells Pond, doesn't sell on iStock for different reasons.

"Transparency is everything when writing a blog, and the first thing I want to see before i read anything is your portfolio - i want to see that you do great stuff, so I know that Im listining to someone who knows what he is talking about...you have a link to your videos?"

"Do you sell stock video?"

I do this for a living. Please read the site for more detailed info. It's all there. You can search any of the sites I list on "about me" with the handle tbmpvideo and find my portfolios. Or you can go to http://www.barksdalemedia.com/stock-footage.html and connect there directly. Or you can see quick and dirty thumbnails on my youtube channel at BarksdaleMedia. As I say in the about me section, I don't pretend to be an expert, but after spending two days attempting to teach my friend how to get started selling and understanding stock video, I realized this information was good, hard to get and valuable. Especially for beginners.  This is the funny nature of the internet. Valuable information wants to be free. I believe in free information and wish I could have read my own website when starting out. I would have reached my goals a lot faster!

In any event, thanks for your comments. Any recommendations, comments and gripes are greatly appreciated. New interviews coming from Bob Davies of PicNiche, the iSyndica replacement and Ellen Boughn, the stock photo guru with a log history in stock, and RM photography.

« Reply #10 on: December 07, 2010, 21:07 »
0
For those of us who make a living doing this, as I do, the future - probably the only possible income future - is in finding market niches and increasing production values, not restricting competition

Hey, you know what doesn't help?  Training your competition.  Yes, it makes your ego feel good and all, but it doesn't make business sense.

« Reply #11 on: December 07, 2010, 21:28 »
0
"Hey, you know what doesn't help?  Training your competition.  Yes, it makes your ego feel good and all, but it doesn't make business sense."

None the less, here I am! That's kinda the point actually. These market forces are out of individual sellers control. Restricting information is for lawyers (and they are threatened also by free information). I think the folks in the old stock video and photo agencies felt the same way as you, as they lost their jobs and companies. It's realistic to feel threatened. You are. But not by me, but by increasing competition from every direction. If you make your living doing this, you may want to consider how your going to cope with them. When I say, find a niche and increase production value, I mean it. Most of those stock footage houses are history - except those who adapted and survived  There's not much alternate to planning for the future if you want to have one.

« Reply #12 on: December 07, 2010, 21:36 »
0
@tbmpvideo - Any experience or thoughts with the bigger sites like Corbis Motion or Thought Equity?  Wondered if anyone has gone that route.

jbarber873

« Reply #13 on: December 07, 2010, 22:12 »
0
For those of us who make a living doing this, as I do, the future - probably the only possible income future - is in finding market niches and increasing production values, not restricting competition

Hey, you know what doesn't help?  Training your competition.  Yes, it makes your ego feel good and all, but it doesn't make business sense.

sjlocke-  I always read and respect your viewpoints here. I think for the most part you know a whole lot more about microstock than i do. But I would like to give you my point of view. I think that the stock video market is where still images were 5 or 6 years ago. That is, the crowdsourcing model is just starting to take hold. The technology has finally enabled HD video production of a very close to professional quality that was unavailable until recently. The market for that video is also still in it's infancy. The growth of moving images tied to new devices will create the demand. The thing that makes microstock work is the large pool of talent that makes a client certain that they will find something useful for just about anything they look for. That cannot be said of video at this point. The video space needs more contributors, not less, in order to reach a critical mass where it will be seen as a useful resource, and not as a last resort. If you go back to the early still images at Istock, there was an amateurish quality to the collection that has been replaced by a collection that is the equal, and for the most part, better, than the collections that existed at any traditional agency when Istock was started. I would hope that the same thing happens with video. If you bring in the best ideas and production values, and create a resource that is world class, the market will develop in ways we can't imagine. I've been making a living at photography since i was 17 years old, and I'm 57 now. I'm just as excited by this change as I have been with everything that came before. I welcome anyone to compete, because it can only help us all. Just my opinion, and I don't mean to offend you. As I say, I have a great deal of respect for your viewpoint.

« Reply #14 on: December 07, 2010, 22:54 »
0
Sorry, I don't think video is the same as stills.  Good video requires a larger crew, more lights, better talent to act and more money.  Ask Jonathan.  He doesn't and won't do it all by himself.  It isn't the domain of the weekend hobbyist.  And also, I don't think video has the same end market size as stills.  I know others disagree with that, but that's how I envision it.

Quote
It's realistic to feel threatened. You are.

Uh, no I'm not.  I don't do video to any large extent.  I was thinking you might want to avoid encouraging your sales to fall, but apparently you're a masochist.  ;)  Well, enjoy...

« Reply #15 on: December 07, 2010, 23:18 »
0
Uh, no I'm not.  I don't do video to any large extent.  I was thinking you might want to avoid encouraging your sales to fall, but apparently you're a masochist.  ;)  Well, enjoy...

I must be a masochist, having offered myself and as a human target! I don't view up and comers as competition. They are just a fact of life, like the sun coming up. From the blogs, I can see the shake out and declining revenues are very real in the photo side. I do think the barriers to entry are somewhat higher on the video end - just the gear even required to get decent point and shoot offerings is more complex and operates in with other dimensions. But the economics of investment are kinda the same for speculative production value. Better know your shots are going to move before you invest in a model, gear, and all the post production time to bring them up for offer. That may be why the majority of shots offered on the video end are some variation of "opportunity shots" with little production value. But I see from studying the shots on different sites, production value does sell. How to minimize the crap shoot, find a niche and proceed is what I am increasing pondering...

« Reply #16 on: December 07, 2010, 23:28 »
0
"Any experience or thoughts with the bigger sites like Corbis Motion or Thought Equity?  Wondered if anyone has gone that route."

Honestly, I haven't explored them. I've just been a little fish swimming up from the bottom. I know you need to be invited to Vetta on iStockphoto. I'll ask Ellen Boughn in my interview questions about these Rights Managed companies and what opportunities they may present. I'll post back on that.

« Reply #17 on: December 08, 2010, 03:12 »
0
What I still don't understand is why people aren't more concerned that if they accept as low as 15% with istock, other sites will cut their commissions?  It's already happened with stills, the other big sites have seen istock get away with low commissions and have cut theirs.

If we all just go along with this, I don't see how making any significant earnings from microstock video will be possible in the future.

Hopefully the rumours about alamy getting in to video are true and there are other sites that have higher prices that I haven't tried yet.  Moving away from istock in January is an easy decision for me, I have a small video portfolio there and it doesn't make much of my earnings.  I can see why other people can't do that but I really wish they thought more about the long term consequences of very small commissions.  Buyers will go wherever they can find the clips they need, I don't believe they will just stick with one site, especially when they charge more and risk making it unsustainable for contributors.

RT


« Reply #18 on: December 08, 2010, 04:44 »
0
If you can't beat them, help them!

Nothing personal but if you can't beat them why would I want your help?

« Reply #19 on: December 08, 2010, 23:20 »
0
Nothing personal but if you can't beat them why would I want your help?

Sorry, I don't understand your question.


What I still don't understand is why people aren't more concerned that if they accept as low as 15% with istock, other sites will cut their commissions?  It's already happened with stills, the other big sites have seen istock get away with low commissions and have cut theirs.

If we all just go along with this, I don't see how making any significant earnings from microstock video will be possible in the future.


iStock gets a bad rap, from my perspective. (So much as been said, so this will be my only comment on it.) They deliver a lot to their clients in terms of brand. They advertise, unlike most of the high percentage sites (which are non-earners or marginal earners in for the artist and a waste of time) and deliver good money for the contributor with of lots and lots and lots of happy corporate customers having confidence in the site and its offerings and coming back and buying shots. Clients know the files are vetted in every direction, legal, technical, and they issue a guarantee of $10,000 for clips found defective on rights. This is their share of the market.

If you line-up the agencies in terms of percentages, you can see the level of service, back-up legally, quality control, and general standards decreases as the percentages go up. Pond5 being the winner here by exploiting the "out of control anything goes" model and making it pay for all. (They have that market segment nailed and I doubt well see any serious contesters to that slot. Out of 1500 hundred shots submitted there, I had one rejection!) iStock offers the most backup before sales - and the percentage reflects not just greed, but organizational investment.

For me, it's return on ROI which makes me contribute to a site. iStock still a big winner. And it could be, that as iStock continues to preen its model, discouraging the low end contributors on every level, the volume of downloads will increase and contributors will make MORE money than before. We have yet to see. My guess is I'll come out around the same. I have a lot of respect for iStocks model, even with all the nutty back-end problems over there, an it's still worth it to meet them on their terms. It pays off.

« Reply #20 on: December 09, 2010, 00:01 »
0
I did go back, thanks to the comments here, and state the affiliation links. I'll post a side bar with with direct links to my major portfolios as well when I get to it. Thanks!

« Reply #21 on: December 09, 2010, 02:33 »
0
If you could find someone to write an indepth tutorial on how to create stock footage animation that would be very helpful.  I can't find anything doing an internet search and I'm a duck outta water with it.

Thanks :)

« Reply #22 on: December 09, 2010, 04:09 »
0
Don't buyers have to buy an extra EL to get the istock legal guarantee?  In some ways I don't mind lower commission for higher volume of sales but giving them 80% of my earnings was hard to accept.  85% is ridiculous, I just can't take that seriously.  If people accept that it could be 90% next year.

And I am sure there's no need to spend as much on marketing now, are their running cost more than they were a few years ago?  They seem to have the same adverts in the same magazines that I'm sure cant be charging as much as they were before the economic downturn.  Merging with Getty must of cut costs.  I just don't see the justification for taking more and more from contributors.

« Reply #23 on: December 09, 2010, 05:30 »
0
If you could find someone to write an indepth tutorial on how to create stock footage animation that would be very helpful.  I can't find anything doing an internet search and I'm a duck outta water with it.

Step 1: Come up with a concept
Step 2: Create an animation
Step 3: Upload to stock site

« Reply #24 on: December 09, 2010, 05:31 »
0
Don't buyers have to buy an extra EL to get the istock legal guarantee? 

That's for the 250K guarantee.  Every file has 10k of protection.

« Reply #25 on: December 09, 2010, 06:23 »
0
"If you could find someone to write an indepth tutorial on how to create stock footage animation that would be very helpful.  I can't find anything doing an internet search and I'm a duck outta water with it."

I know the market is very competitive, as lots of footage seems priced around 20 - 10 dollars. Pro sellers I speak to sell on volume, as they have to compete with all the stock backgrounds and animations dumped my the large corps, big houses who once sold by the disc. Not my area of expertise at all. You might think about going into the forums on some of the stock sites and asking for some direction from sellers. Usually, you'll get a response if your header and question are specific. Good luck!

RT


« Reply #26 on: December 09, 2010, 06:58 »
0
Nothing personal but if you can't beat them why would I want your help?

Sorry, I don't understand your question.

Have you heard the saying "those who can't teach", or in other words if you're so good at creating saleable stock footage why aren't you doing it instead of "helping" others. It's a bit like taking advice from a reviewer on what makes a successful stock shot!
If I want advice or help on stock video I want it from someone that's successful at doing it, but of course the successful one's don't tend to bend over backwards to help complete strangers - hence they're successful.

« Reply #27 on: December 09, 2010, 11:06 »
0
"If you could find someone to write an indepth tutorial on how to create stock footage animation that would be very helpful.  I can't find anything doing an internet search and I'm a duck outta water with it."

I know the market is very competitive, as lots of footage seems priced around 20 - 10 dollars. Pro sellers I speak to sell on volume, as they have to compete with all the stock backgrounds and animations dumped my the large corps, big houses who once sold by the disc. Not my area of expertise at all. You might think about going into the forums on some of the stock sites and asking for some direction from sellers. Usually, you'll get a response if your header and question are specific. Good luck!

Everytime I've asked on the sites I'm on it's like this huge guarded secret for some reason.  Very hush, hush very annoying IMO.  Thanks anyway.

« Reply #28 on: December 09, 2010, 11:14 »
0
It's not hush hush.  It's because you're asking something like "How do I make my own car?".

1. Figure out what you mean by "stock footage animation" (try google)
2. Buy software that can accommodate that end result
3. Learn software (I'll help - check out the best AE tut site: http://www.videocopilot.net/tutorials/)
4. Develop concept
5. Animate something to illustrate concept
6. Upload

There is nothing separating "stock footage animation" from any other kind of animation.

« Reply #29 on: December 09, 2010, 11:56 »
0
It's not hush hush.  It's because you're asking something like "How do I make my own car?".

1. Figure out what you mean by "stock footage animation" (try google)
2. Buy software that can accommodate that end result
3. Learn software (I'll help - check out the best AE tut site: http://www.videocopilot.net/tutorials/)
4. Develop concept
5. Animate something to illustrate concept
6. Upload

There is nothing separating "stock footage animation" from any other kind of animation.


I've got AE but it's way before CS so hopefully it'll still work.  And thanks for the link.  I never ran across that site in my Google search from a few weeks ago.  All I could find were tutorials on manipulating digital video which is something I can't do, well, not with the cameras we have that can do video P & S not pretty.

Thanks again,

Anita

jbarber873

« Reply #30 on: December 10, 2010, 08:35 »
0
jbarber873

That point of view is fair enough. However if serious video contributors would only build their portfolios with better paying agencies the clients would certainly follow. As the microstock video market becomes saturated the price pressure will certainly be downwards. 15% of $90 is very low, 15% of $50 - 30 - 20 would be nuts.

 You are probably correct that the trend will be down on pricing of commodity images. Anything easy to produce is easy to copy. I'm too new at this to get a feel for where the clients are and where the sweet spot is, but using all the sales channels helps me get a feedback for who is buying and what they are looking for. I wish I could follow the sales chain a little further along, but the nature of these sites locks you out of that data. That's one important difference with running your own site, which I see in my still work. The chance to follow up and get real time information on the needs of the client is extremely valuable. I wish photoshelter had a video solution.

« Reply #31 on: December 10, 2010, 21:43 »
0
"Have you heard the saying "those who can't teach", or in other words if you're so good at creating saleable stock footage why aren't you doing it instead of "helping" others. It's a bit like taking advice from a reviewer on what makes a successful stock shot!
If I want advice or help on stock video I want it from someone that's successful at doing it, but of course the successful ones don't tend to bend over backwards to help complete strangers - hence they're successful."


If you spend some time evaluating the sites content, you may have a different take. Take a pot shot at any page, that would probably be more productive than attacking my commercial viability. I invite you.

It has been fun and challenging creating it. I am a risk taker. No risk, no reward. That's the great thing about selling stock, you can stop and do something else for a month and the cash keeps coming in. It has also sharpened my sense of how to do this business - which is probably more valuable in the long run that churning out stock clips the majority of which don't sell - which if we admit it, is the pressing issue.

"You are probably correct that the trend will be down on pricing of commodity images. Anything easy to produce is easy to copy. I'm too new at this to get a feel for where the clients are and where the sweet spot is, but using all the sales channels helps me get a feedback for who is buying and what they are looking for. I wish I could follow the sales chain a little further along, but the nature of these sites locks you out of that data. That's one important difference with running your own site, which I see in my still work. The chance to follow up and get real time information on the needs of the client is extremely valuable. I wish photoshelter had a video solution."

I agree with the comment. If you look at the agencies (where you can set the price) clip display pages now - which come up on the default search where the contributors are competing side by side - you can see the good shots, unique in content and high in production value, command reasonable prices. Shots anyone can do, anyone does - and you see those contributors compete on price. Understanding the search engine decision tree I think helps decode what can be seen on those pages (and in my sales, non sales), downloads, views and what's coming up first and what goes to the end of the line. The three angles, contributor, agency, buyer are all impossible to see directly. So we wind up creating content and feel like we are just rolling dice.

« Reply #32 on: December 17, 2010, 14:29 »
0
tbmpvideo: you are, indeed, brave to 1st start this thread and 2nd to defend yourself considering some of the comments.  This forum is harsh and it seems it is much easier to criticize than it is to praise.  I have watched the forum for quite a while and have held back from participating due to some of the members who will rip you to shreds if they do not agree with you.  So from someone who has shot stills stock for a while and who is just investigating video stock, bravo for starting this and there are actually people on your side here.

« Reply #33 on: December 17, 2010, 14:52 »
0
So from someone who has shot stills stock for a while and who is just investigating video stock, bravo for starting this and there are actually people on your side here.

Well, of course you're on his side.  You have something to gain from it. :)

« Reply #34 on: December 17, 2010, 22:47 »
0
"tbmpvideo: you are, indeed, brave to 1st start this thread and 2nd to defend yourself considering some of the comments.  This forum is harsh and it seems it is much easier to criticize than it is to praise.  I have watched the forum for quite a while and have held back from participating due to some of the members who will rip you to shreds if they do not agree with you.  So from someone who has shot stills stock for a while and who is just investigating video stock, bravo for starting this and there are actually people on your side here."

Thanks for you kinds words. Actually, I find the comments - all of them - very instructive. If someone is suspect of my intentions, that's useful information too. One thing I have learned is not to respond in kind to personal remarks. Keep it civil and non-personal. Take the high road. These forums are for me places to find and exchange useful information above all else. When I get slammed, there is no practical way to respond to someone who says, "You are ill-motivated!". I mean, what do you actually say without just going round and round? When someone attacks me, I just ask them to address the facts, prove their point in some way reasonable people would find valuable and keep the thread topical and non-personal. What else can you do? If they continue in the same vain I give up and ignore them. I can take it. Bring 'em on! Got a thick thick skin!
« Last Edit: December 17, 2010, 22:49 by tbmpvideo »

« Reply #35 on: January 21, 2011, 17:35 »
0
Hi Terry,
i do like Your site. I don't think that You are revealing personal "secrets" as there is only one:"shoot, upload, repeat".
I do mostly 3d animations exclusively in istock and so far i am quite happy.


 

Related Topics

  Subject / Started by Replies Last post
2 Replies
4242 Views
Last post June 25, 2008, 08:52
by yuliang11
8 Replies
4205 Views
Last post December 16, 2013, 20:11
by Jo Ann Snover
100 Replies
36206 Views
Last post May 15, 2010, 14:06
by elvinstar
5 Replies
3008 Views
Last post May 13, 2013, 10:13
by jbarber873
4 Replies
1085 Views
Last post October 09, 2018, 02:42
by rushay

Sponsors

Microstock Poll Results