In the old days – when I started Sonic Sight we used to sell recordings of events on VHS cassettes. Then it was DVDs. Now, of course, any video content is distributed online. Very occasionally I have some requests to create a DVD from a client and I tell them “no”.
The DVD is dead. People want content immediately at a click of a button.
So where does that leave people who want to sell their video content? Ordering a DVD and having it posted out just doesn’t appeal these days.
There are now plenty of ways to commercialize your video content and sell it online.
There are a few types of recordings you might want to monetize. This includes recordings of events that have parents or fans wanting to purchase and videos courses that have been created.
VIMEO – ON DEMAND
If it is a one-off recording of a live event or some other production you’ve created then check out Vimeo On Demand. Vimeo has been around for as long as YouTube and has a great following in the creative fields. You need to sign up as a Pro member which costs $219 per year. This gives you access to all of the features of Vimeo including the ability to sell content within their channel.
Vimeo promises to promote your video to their worldwide marketplace, but I wouldn’t rely on that. It will be up to you to promote it. They take 10% of the fees you earn from the sales. This is a safe way of charging you as you don’t have to pay anything (apart from the Pro membership) until you sell something.
You can also create a series of videos using Vimeo On Demand, so it can work as a platform if you have a course of videos you want to sell.
This video gives you an overview of Vimeo On Demand.
YOUTUBE – PAY PER VIEW
YouTube offers a pay for view service as well. However, you need to have at least 1,000 subscribers before you qualify for this service. This will rule out a lot of content producers and is for the die-hard video creators who have a decent following.
PLATFORMS FOR ONLINE COURSES
If you are wanting to position yourself as an expert in your field and sell an online video course then there are a few platforms that have been specifically built for this purpose. When I created my course Video Tips & Secrets, I initially went to the effort of building my own site with a payment portal and a membership portal and it became quite complex and costly and it had bugs.
After much tweaking and fiddling I ended up posting my videos onto Udemy instead. Although I no longer had the full control of the course and the participants I was able to very quickly upload the videos and get started with the course.
Udemy promotes itself as an online university. There are people who now make a very healthy income from the courses they’ve created on Udemy. What I like about it is the ability to create coupons so you can offer discounted subscriptions very easily. This includes offering the course for free or taking a percentage of the course.
The course content can include notes, quizzes, downloads and of course videos.
There is no cost to set up your course and Udemy only take 3% of the sale price. So if you sell a $100 USD course you keep $97. It’s up to you do the promoting.
Udemy will also run promotions of your course which you can opt in or opt out of. These promotions will offer your course (and everyone else’s who agrees to be part of these campaigns) for prices like $15 or $10 USD. You get to keep 50% of the income from these campaigns. I choose to the participant because I figure this is probably income I wouldn’t be getting otherwise.
But to earn the bigger bucks it comes down to you actively promoting your course for the bigger amounts and 97% margin.
Your videos need to be decent quality. If not, Udemy will reject them and ask you to do them again. As usual the main problem with be the audio. If you are planning on creating video content for training purposes then perhaps it might be worth checking out my Udemy course Video Tips & Secrets – get 60% off with this link.
You can choose to make some of your course available for preview so people can try before they buy. You are also encouraged to create a promotional video for the course like this:
Thinkific is similar to Udemy. However, it is based on a subscription pricing. It has a basic free offer which will get your course up online. It then has subscription levels of membership which range from $39 a month to $219 a month. So there’s a big difference in prices between it and Udemy.
Some of the benefits of Thinkific is that the course can be hosted on your own website and importantly you can have access to the contact details of the students who sign up. This is great if you are looking to develop relationships with the students and potentially upsell. You can communicate with the students in Udemy, but it is only through the Udemy platform and there are limitations on what you can offer.
The free offer of Thinkific is enough to get you up and running so I’d suggest you start with that and consider buying a monthly subscription when you find you need the extra features.