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The Ultimate Guide To Getting Your Start In Stock Video – Part 3 Who Should You Sell To?

Guide to Stock Video Part 3 - Who to sell toRegardless of your choice to be exclusive or not, one of the most important decisions you can make as a stock footage content creator is who you decide to sell through. In the seven years that I have been doing this, I have had the chance to interact with a number of stock footage houses. Not only will I share with you my experience, but I’ll also share with you the percentage of sales that I generate from that house. As with any opinion, take what I say with a grain of salt- this is just one perspective.

This list appears in the order of who I like to do business with; it is not in the order of the most sales. I’ve organized my feedback into the following categories: Submission Process, Approval Time, Commissions, Customer Support.

ShutterStock (~35%)

ShutterStock is definitely my preferred reseller. If I were to put all of my eggs in one basket, this would be whom I would go with.

Submission Process: Streamlined, simple, and they accept CSV files to automate the input of metadata. However, it could be more streamlined, as I have to go in and individually submit/approve each file after the metadata has been added.

Approval Time: Quick. Usually only a matter of days, or a week at most.

Customer Support: Responsive and knowledgeable.

Commissions: Starts at 20%, and you can never lose your percentage.

Pond 5 (~15%)

Pond 5 comes in at a close second for my preferred reseller. I love that I can set my own price, and they have the best commission rate. It is just unfortunate that I do not see a lot of sales from them.

Submission Process: Streamlined, simple, and they accept CSV Files to automate the input of metadata. They have the best submission process that I have experienced. However, at times the CSV doesn’t always get read correctly, which can be a pain to fix. But, when it works (90% of the time), it is the fastest system out there.

Approval Time: Quick. Usually only a matter of days, or a week at most.

Customer Support: Responsive and knowledgeable.

Commissions: 50% and you can never lose your percentage.

RevoStock (~5%)

RevoStock has been the most friendly, outgoing reseller to work with. And I like the innovative ideas that they come up with to drive sales- like offering bundles, tutorials, and other out of the box offerings. When it comes to pricing and sales, they offer the most flexibility.

Submission Process: Streamlined, simple, and they accept CSV files to automate the input of metadata. They are a close second to Pond5 in terms of ease and speed of submitting clips.

Approval Time: Quick. Usually only a matter of days, or a week at most.

Customer Support: Responsive and knowledgeable.

Commissions: Starts at 45%, and you can never lose your percentage.

Guide to Stock Video Part 3
Still from Ryan’s Library

Getty (~10%)

Getty approached me about selling my clips on their site shortly after taking over iStock. Since then, I haven’t had to do any work to sell clips on their site; they just automatically pull from my iStock collection. Because of this arrangement, I cannot honestly comment on the submission process or approval time. What has set Getty apart from everyone else has been their one-on-one guidance. You can speak with people about your footage, what needs to be improved, and they offer monthly guides/ideas for shoots, which really helps with content creation.

Submission Process: N/A

Approval Time: N/A

Customer Support: Responsive and knowledgeable.

Commissions: Starts at 25%, and you can never lose your percentage.

iStock (~35%)

If iStock didn’t command such a large percentage of my sales, I wouldn’t use them as a reseller. Their staff is helpful, friendly, and knowledgeable. I’ve even had the chance to meet several of them in person. Unfortunately, over the years, they have adjusted the commissions to be more favorable to them, and their submission process has become more cumbersome.

Submission Process: Cumbersome, frustrating, and outdated. I have to create individual folders with all of the content, named according to their standards, and individual text files that contain the metadata. After it is uploaded, I have to change the folder name, and then go into their system and individually approve each clip for submission. It makes it almost a full time job just to submit to them.

Approval Time: All over the map. When I was exclusive, it could be as short as 2 weeks, or as long as 2 months. Now that I am non-exclusive, I am at the back of the line, and it can be up to 1 month.

Customer Support: Responsive and knowledgeable. (But there isn’t much they can do about the approval time).

Commissions: Starts at 15%, and gets adjusted yearly based on previous sales.

Other houses you can sell through:
Artbeats
Mammoth HD
Video Hive

Who you choose to sell to is a personal decision that only you can make. What works for me may not work for you. The only real way to figure out who is the right fit for you is to try them out for yourself.

DISCLAIMER: I am sharing with you directly from my own experience, and what has worked for me. I cannot promise or guarantee any results. Use my advice at your own risk.

Until Next Time, Get Out There And Shoot…

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The Ultimate Guide To Getting Your Start In Stock Video
Part 1 Misconceptions
Part 2 Exclusive or Non-Exclusive
Part 3 Who Should You Sell To?
Part 4 How To Drive Sales of Your Footage
Part 5 What Content Should I Be Shooting
Part 6 5 Crucial Steps For A Successful Stock Shoot
Part 7 Maximizing Your Post Workflow
Part 8 How To Effectively Deliver Your Stock Footage

Ryan E. Walters, Cinematographer
www.ryanewalters.com
@ryanewaltcine
vimeo/ryanewalters

#withmycamera

Join the conversation

2 Responses to “The Ultimate Guide To Getting Your Start In Stock Video – Part 3 Who Should You Sell To?”

  1. Rui Guerra on March 1st, 2017 5:01 am

    Nice review. How about Clippn and Nature Footage? Any comments?
    Thanks!

  2. David Imm on September 5th, 2017 11:21 pm

    we need a rewrite on this… if you are still alive. Revostock is GONE for 2 yrs and no mention of VideoBlocks

About the Author


Born in 1980 in Seattle, Washington, Ryan has had a love and passion for the visual arts since a young child when his grandmother, an avid photographer, took him along on photo expeditions. As he grew up, his parents furthered that passion by enrolling him in various art programs and lessons. While he enjoyed painting and drawing, something was always missing - the ability to capture motion. Once introduced to the art of cinematography in high school he never looked back.Ryan E. Walters, Cinematographer Since that time, Ryan has developed this passion and turned it into his career. As an award-winning cinematographer his work has allowed him the opportunity to travel worldwide in the pursuit of telling stories that are visually compelling. Ryan's distinct experience includes feature films, documentaries, commercials, and shooting for Comcast, TLC, Oxygen, and the Discovery Channel. Not only does Ryan seek to deliver cinematic images for his clients, but his commitment, organization, and professionalism means he constantly goes the extra mile to ensure that the results he delivers exceed his clients expectations.

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