Videomaker – Learn video production and editing, camera reviews › Forums › Specialty Topics › Commercial Video › selling videos online
May 10, 2011 at 1:16 AM #47344
I moonlight as an event videographer. Mostly school productions. I have been producing and selling my videos the old-fashioned way burn to DVD, duplicate, package in jewel cases, and ship or hand-deliver to customers.
Now I’m thinking of eliminating the discs and putting the video image on a web site where customers can purchase and download.
Has anyone out there in the event videography business gone online with their sales? What’s the best way of setting it up?
My major reservation about going online: Are the potential customers comfortable with buying a video online, or we stuck with discs for a few more years?
Look forward to hearing your responses.
May 10, 2011 at 2:47 PM #194978
I can’t remember the last time I mastered to tape. All of my work has been distributed online for many years. I changed nothing as far as billing. It’s still by the hour or at a flat rate for the whole enchelada. I just email a link now instead of dropping something at fedex.
May 10, 2011 at 3:37 PM #194979
I should add that I sell 30 to 150 videos per event, so I would have a fair amount of traffic going to a web site to
buy and download. Is it better to go with a web service to handle transactions, or can this sort of online transaction be handled on a website I set up and manage.
May 10, 2011 at 7:22 PM #194980
no reason ya cant just add a paypal button, imo.
May 11, 2011 at 3:47 PM #194981billmeccaParticipant
Are you thinking about an on-demand type service or just letting them have a digital file that can be duplicated and distributed (pirated) easily. that’s the rub for me. there are some on-demand services but their monthly fee is pretty steep, and I do have reservations about piracy for the docos I make etc. that’s why I still sell via DVD.
Would love to find an affordable on-demand service, but my doco is very niche and not a big money maker. Hoping the next couple are more widely desired. 😉
May 11, 2011 at 5:45 PM #194982
I wasn’t thinking of an on-demand service. Rather, the customer would be given a link to a web site containing a downloadable video file, which could be purchased via PayPal.
Yes, piracy is a concern. However, my customers are typically parents or grandparents of kids who they’ve just watched perform in a school play or a music/dance recital. Not your stereotypical pirate, but who knows? There could be a few people who would make a couple extra copies for out-of-town relatives. I could live with losing a few sales that way, because I would be saving a significant amount of time and money by not creating a stack of DVDs with full-color covers and then paying to ship them out.
I could negate some of the piracy concerns by having customers pay in advance for a link and a password to access the video file. I would email them the info after I have payment in hand.
A bigger concern for me is if Joe and Mary Customer (kindly but computer-challenged grandparents) are ready for the task of downloading a digital file and then knowing what to do with it after it lands on their computer.
As you can see, I’m still sorting this out in my head to determine if this is a viable option. I appreciate all your feedback!
May 24, 2011 at 4:04 PM #194983billmeccaParticipant
I see where you’re going. download speed and file size could still be an issue (especially with some of the older folks) You can set up a paypal button with an auto responder to email them the link. I remember doing this a number of years ago before I started using a duplicator and having them handle the sale. (now I just get a monthly check from the DVD sales)
You could offer a streaming version WMV, Flash or QT and again send the link via the paypal button, they would then only the really computer savvy would be able to download. One caveat there is if you hosted the video yourself, and it was viewed multiple times, it could really eat into your hosting bandwidth (the main reason I was thinking of an on-demand solution, hosted by someone else ;-D )
another thought would be to upload it to Youtube as unlisted (only those with the url can find it) use the paypal button for payment and auto responder. You could also offer the DVD sale as well. I would imagine a number of the old folks in the market would rather watch on their TV than computer screen.
Hope that helps (it did for me just thinking about it)
May 27, 2011 at 3:09 AM #194984SteveMannParticipant
“Mostly school productions.”
I wouldn’t do it online.
I have been producing DVDs for schools for ten years. While the directors can usually purchase video rights with their book, the contracts that I’ve seen restrict distribution to cast and crew only. Put them for sale on your web site and you are dangling low-hanging fruit in front of the copyright lawyers.
May 27, 2011 at 8:40 PM #194985applekpParticipant
details, details, could you please list recommended sites to upload video`s to, for sale. Videomaker could make a tutorial on this. Has anyone used itunes for video download sales.
Has anyone made a how to do it video and posted it up for sale ? another one for videomaker
May 29, 2011 at 3:34 AM #194986
You can take your pick. I like vimeo, like many others. Simple.. free… and, well, really freakin simple.
June 1, 2011 at 3:00 PM #194987johnParticipant
What you may find is that there is an age cut off, younger parents will probably not baulk at viewing on line but grandparents may consider the idea of web access only as a detriment. Some people want a DVD they can throw in when they want and bring with them when visiting family. I know that I would want a DVD over a website for now. Then again I prefer printed books over a Kindle because it is easy to write notes in the margins.
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