The thing to remember about video selling online is that doing it well is less about doing the actual selling and more about what others are willing to pay for and why.
Getting people to part with their hard-earned money in exchange for watching your content is a lot easier said than done. Any content creator is all too familiar with the frustration of creating and uploading content and getting no reaction from their audience. And that’s content offered for free on platforms like YouTube, so you can only imagine how difficult it must be to make money after placing your video behind a paywall.
Here are a few tips for beginners looking to sell videos online:
Video Selling Requires High-Quality Content Worth Sharing
The Internet is saturated with content. It’s estimated that around 400 hours of video are uploaded to YouTube every minute. Meanwhile, the top 100 brands (e.g., Disney, Sony, Coca-Cola, and Samsung) alone upload a video to YouTube every 18.5 minutes.
What all of this means is that if you’re serious about selling videos, there’s simply no way you can do it with anything less than great content. We’re not necessarily talking about videos with the highest production quality. At the very least, however, your videos should be watchable. That means:
- Great audio and video
- A clear and cohesive message
- Well-researched information that can be verified
- Actionable insights that your audience will actually find useful
All of this may sound like a given, but you’d be surprised just how many people make horrible, low-quality videos, upload them to a platform like YouTube or Udemy, and cry about not receiving any clicks or purchases.
One thing you need to understand about great video content is that many of the videos you like often look simple and easy to make. For example, your typical Casey Neistat vlog looks like it’d be easy to emulate, especially once you figure out his style.
But what you may not realize is how much work every single one of his vlogs takes, from shooting and post-production to uploading the video on YouTube. Just because it looks fun and easy, doesn’t make it so.
In other words, if you’re serious about selling videos online, you need to bring your A-game and be ready to create something that’s actually worth selling. You need to be prepared to work hard and work for free for what may seem like an eternity. But don’t give up, every video content creator started by grinding it out for months before they finally hit it big. What’s important is to keep moving forward. Any strategy that involves making income requires a lot of time. The same thing goes for video selling.
Think of Your Videos as Products
In many ways, it’s important to think of your video content as a product. And like any product, it needs to answer a few simple questions:
- What does this product do?
- Why should people care about this product?
- Who is this product for?
- What kind of value does it add to people’s lives?
Once you can answer these questions, it becomes easier to create videos with a clear objective, message, and desired outcome with a clearly-identified audience.
Again, this sounds like common sense, but many video content creators start shooting videos without actually knowing what they want to do with their footage. Not only is this process inefficient, but it could result in low-quality videos.
Choose a Marketable Content Style That You Like
Once you know how to position your videos and what kind of angles you wish to take with them, you can then plan how to sell and market your content. This usually involves asking the question: what special thing does my video have that sets it apart from other content?
For example, you may have envisioned your videos talking about video games. This is a reasonably saturated niche and one with thousands, if not millions, of great videos offered for free.
Doing Let’s Play (LP) videos might seem like the best approach, especially if you wanted to offer a video review. However, you need to step back and ask yourself if this is a format people would be willing to pay for. Also, you need to decide if you have the time to put in the work required for each episode (that’s if you want this to be a series of recurring videos).
And then, of course, there’s the question of novelty. Will your videos be able to compete with the vast pool of people already doing the same thing? What X factor does your content have?
In this case, it may make more sense to do shorter review clips interspersed with in-game video clips instead of long playthroughs. This way, your opinion on the game takes the spotlight instead of the game itself.
This logic applies to virtually any style of video. Take the time to strategize how to set your videos apart from the competition. You can also experiment with and tweak standard video formats, such as:
- Explainer/instructional videos
- Video presentations
Take a Moment to Think About Video Selling Copyright Law
When you produce videos for your personal use and upload them to your social media feeds and/or YouTube channel, you probably don’t need to worry too much about copyright law. However, when you’re creating videos for commercial use, you need to be mindful of the laws that prohibit the use of stolen content.
For example, if you are a fitness coach, you can expect to run into legal problems if you use another fitness coach’s content in your videos, even if you did it with no intention of ripping off his ideas.
Selling videos approaching video creation from a business standpoint. As such, any video you produce must be treated as a product, and it’s essential to be able to legally create and sell your product. The basics of copyright law usually involve:
- Showing to you own all commercial rights to your content
- Being advertiser-friendly
- The ability to meet all the terms and conditions of the platform you upload your content to
Remember, creating videos and selling them online is a process that takes time and effort. As mentioned earlier, it’s not unusual for content creators to go for months before they sell their first video.
The key is to trust the process, hone your craft, and focus on creating high-quality content that no one else is doing. Remember, everyone has something new they can bring to the table, so there’s always something new to do and talk about in your video content. At the same time, try to be methodical when creating your videos. Make sure there’s demand for your content, and try to do things that no one else is doing.