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A Case for Stock Video

by Michael Nelson

As a content creator and videographer, I really want to tell you that your video inbound marketing efforts need only custom video creation. As a business owner, I definitely want to tell you that you need custom video creation. The thing is, that is not always the case. On some occasions, stock video is the perfect solution, regardless if it is for television, social media, YouTube, or your website. Let me lay out the pros and cons for you. Let’s use the video above as an example. 

Pros

  • You can possibly save a ton of time. In the video above, we had a limited amount of time to shoot, edit, and deliver the product. Finding the right actors, choosing locations, scheduling, and all the myriad details that go into producing footage can sometimes take weeks or months. By using stock footage, we were able to forgo all of that and get right to finding clips and editing. 
  • You can save a ton of money. In the world of video, time equals money. If we had to shoot custom footage to line up with what we had for stock video clips, it would have cost thousands of dollars. When I say thousands, I mean closer to ten than two. 
  • You have many options. There are so many clips available that you can cover almost every scenario imaginable. In some cases, you are able to find clips that you could not create without considerable time and cost. Stock video clips give you seemingly never-ending possibilities. Need a drone shot of Norway or footage like the one below but don’t want to expend resources to get one? No problem. Stock video is here. Don’t want to wait for a solar eclipse but want one in your video? Stock video is the answer. 

I am sure there are other points we can make for the use of stock video, but I think you get the gist. 

Cons

  • The stock video clips are not unique to your video. Because everyone has access to them, there is a very good chance that you may see some of the clips in your repertoire in other people’s videos. 
  • You lose social engagement. If you are using these videos for social media or television and you and your people are not in the video, you will possibly miss out on engagement. As people recognize you, they begin to comment, share, and discuss. This is exactly what you want to help gain traction organically, especially with inbound marketing. Using stock video can drastically reduce this prospect and have a negative effect on your marketing efforts.
  • Sometimes there just are not stock videos clips that line up with your message the way you would want. This is one of the times that stock video is limiting, and the only thing you can do is shoot custom video unique to your situation. 

As you can see, there are some reasons for and some reasons against using stock video clips. There are situations in which you will absolutely want to use stock video for your top-of-the-funnel marketing assets. This does not mean you should automatically go for stock videos that you just throw your logo on. There are also situations in which you will want to create custom videos perfectly suited to your needs—lead-generating machines that will give you an amazing ROI. Not sure when to use them and when not to? Shoot us an email, and we can help you figure it out.

An aerial shot of Norway from a stock video site:

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