Are you a moviemaker or video maker? Have you been creating and posting videos to sites like YouTube, Metacafe and MySpaceTV video? You have been getting lots of great feedback, viewers have been favoriting your videos and sharing them among their friends, and maybe now you are thinking, how do I make some money on this?
Or maybe you are an upcoming video producer, shooter or editor. You recognize that the web is the wild frontier of video and film and you want to get a piece of it. Or maybe you are running a business and you are smart enough to recognize that maybe you can make some additional money by leveraging your products and services via web video.
Yes, you can make money in web video. You don’t need to be a big-time producer with deep pockets. You don’t need to have graduated form a top notch film school. You don’t even need fancy video cameras and video editing gear.
There are various paths and direction you can take depending on what kinds of video you are making and what your goals are.
For the professional video or filmmaker, the creator of short videos or independent films, the best choice is to hook up with a major content provider that already has a presence on the web as well as in broadcast. Companies like Atom Films, Break, iFilm and the My Damn Channel all buy and license video streaming content from professional video makers. See the list of Sites that pay for video at Internet Video Magazine.
These web video distributors license your videos to other content companies and also exhibit your film on their Internet site, sharing the various advertisings and licensing revenues they get with you.
Most of these types of sites runs ad before your video, as well as a plethora of ads and banners on the web site. They have money coming in, and realizing the value of well made content, will pay you for your videos and films.
Atom Films says “We earn good money from those ads and we share a percentage of the gross revenue with content creators. That money is paid out according to the relative popularity of each movie on AtomFilms – so the more plays your movie generates, the more money you make.”
Because companies like AtomFilms also function as a source for video content to other media companies, they can pay you a slice of that as well. AtomFilms supplies content to companies like Comedy Central, Spike TV, Verizon’s Vcast mobile entertainment service and Bell South’s web portal. These partners pay Atom for the content, and from that revenue they pay royalties to the creators whose movies are shown.
According to AtomFilms, many of their film and video creators earn hundreds of dollars, some earn thousands of dollars, and the most successful creators have made tens of thousands – even hundreds of thousands of dollars.
There are some sites that are actually pay per view and work best for content that is either informational like “how to do it” videos or travel videos, or contain “special content” that can not be easily accessed elsewhere. Some of the leading sites for this are Veoh, Guba.com, BrightCove, VideoJug and ExpertVillage. At ExpertVillage, you can earn $100 to $1000 for each how-to video. The videos must be assigned first, focus on a specific topic, and consist of about 15 segments of one to three minutes each, featuring an “expert” on a given subject.
If you are running a business and want to promote it via video, you have a few options. You could use one of the pay per view services to distribute educational videos that you produce. You could distribute and re-purpose your TV and cable commercials by posting them to one or more of the “free” video posting sites, or you could actually create a “viral” video that drives traffic to your site.
A great example is the “Will It Blend” series of videos by a small company known as BlendTec. Originally done as a one off joke video featuring Blendtec CEO Tom Dickson and his blending antics, it turned viral. The company followed up with an almost endless series of videos of him grinding up objects of all types and sizes, from marbles to an iPhone to a rake handle. It has become a wonderful advertising and promotional medium for their company and now almost everyone knows who they are.
Many musicians are using web videos to promote themselves, their bands and their music. These can be a great way to build a new audience and get music enthusiasts exposed to their work without having to go through the music industry machine. Musicians can add links to their web sites on their videos to drive interest, or actually have roll-over promo appear when a web visitor checks out their video.
Maybe the most interesting channel to make money with your Internet video is by using sites that allow you to post almost any kind of video you created.
It can be a sophisticated, dramatic piece or a video clip snippet captured from your camcorder or your video phone. As long as you created it, you can make money from it. Once it is posted, whenever someone clicks on it and watches the video, you get paid. It’s all about driving content and eyeballs. Some interesting sites include YouTube, LuluTV, Flixya, Magnify.Net, Revver, BlipTV and many others. Also check out the many how to video sites like ExpertVillage and HowCast.
For example, BlipTV – Blip TV offers a 50/50 revenue share with the advertising that is streamed with your video. Blip TV says, “Blip.tv has built an open advertising marketplace where you can pick the video advertising company that works best for you. If you’ve got a hit show we’ll even go out and meet with media buyers directly to get you a real, honest-to-goodness high-end sponsorship.”
Another option is YouTube. They recently announced that they will start running ads on their videos and will be sharing the revenue with the content providers. Check out this news story from Yahoo News and A P
Revver – Once you upload a video to Revver, they attach an ad and a unique tracking technology. Any ad revenue generated by the video is then split 50/50 between you and Revver. According to Revver, “Since ads are attached to the video itself and dynamically served wherever the video travels, there’s no restriction on how your videos are distributed. The more people email your video, post it to other websites or download it from P2P networks, the more money you could earn.”
This is interesting. Revver also pays you for sharing other people’s videos on the Revver network. You can earn 20% of ad revenue for sharing videos by other Revver members. The remaining revenue is split 50/50 between the maker and Revver.
My WeShow enables anyone to become an online video aggregator: finding, creating, discussing, sharing and making money from video content –
You Got to Promote Your OnLine Video
Once you have your videos uploaded, you also need to promote them and tell the world they are out there. For example, one of my favorite sites is French Maids TV – The Viral Video of “How To’s” by French Maids. Their videos are everywhere – on Revver, on BlipTV, on YouTube, etc.. According to Tim Street, creator and executive Producer, not only do they get paid to create these “viral” videos by each show’s tech sponsors, they collect thousands of dollars each month by links on Revver and similar web sites.
These shows combine a lot of humor and a bit of sex to promote the product or service featured on each clip. In addition to these natural hooks, he also promotes the show using RSS and podcast directories.
Tim said, “You need to make sure that you create a RSS Feed – a podcast of your videos. Then you need to get listed on all the podcast directories including the most important one of all, the one that can change your life forever, the one and only iTunes Store! Seriously iTunes has done more to promote French Maid TV than any other thing out there. It took French Maid TV a month to get listed on the iTunes Store. Three days later French Maid TV was number one and we had twenty thousand subscribers.”
There is a lot of money to be made in online video. Whether you are just uploading short clips captured by your camcorder phone, creating infomercials or how to videos, or producing creative and funny short films or indie full-length features, the online market is hungry for content.