Can I make money editing videos

What does the future hold for video producers and how do I make money producing videos

Making money with film or video always depends on the framework conditions that your business environment offers you. This article shows possible scenarios you may need to prepare for in the future.

You cannot swim without water. Neither is it possible for you to be on the road for work without moving in a market. Even if you do everything right, the development of a market can make your soup very salty. If you work professionally and professionally in the film business and if you want to make good money in the future too, you have to think about where you can go. This applies to free markets, in which commissioned producers are active with real or fake commissioned productions, as well as to the highly subsidized feature film business.

In this article, we will show you four different scenarios that alone or together could shape the future of the electronic media market.

Making money with film or video: what does the future hold?

The article series on money and careers in film has 4 parts. They are all concerned with the question of how you can make good money in the film business in a fair way:

This fourth part of the series is about the most difficult aspect of making money with video or film: the economic framework conditions that your environment puts on your eyes. In contrast to the services you offer or in competition with your competitors, you can only influence the rules of the game to a very limited extent here. It's like swimming: you are always exposed to part of the water and its temperature or current.

What you, as a clever mind, have learned so far about making money

In the first post you learned that not every problem that you can solve for your customer is actually his problem from the customer's point of view. Your quality can be 100 times better, if the customer is satisfied with the existing quality of their videos (or there is no budget to increase the quality) you can jump in the square and you will still not make any money.

Hopefully, Part 2 forced you to ask yourself more important questions. The most important of these: What are you really good at and what sets you apart from your valued competitors? The answers will help you sharpen your alignment and positioning.

If you want to make more money, you need new customers. The third article in the series names ways to do this. Here you will learn why target groups are indispensable for your success, how you communicate where, what the yo-yo effect is for video producers and why you should always think in sequences (i.e. more than just one measure) in marketing.

Market changes: I'm helpless anyway!

The first and most important message for you: Wrong! You can do something. Just because you swim in the sea and the current changes or the water temperature cools down, you are by no means lost.

But only under one condition. You have prepared for the change and have a plan for it. If you jumped headless into the water as a non-swimmer: your fault!

It is part of your professional duties to prepare for and have a concept for anything you can imagine. And for what you can't imagine, too.

First of all, you need a radar system. This enables you to recognize developments at an early stage. A radar system can be conversations with other industry participants, membership in professional associations, exchanges with your customers and, above all, the ability to think again and again about what is changing for you in your job and why.

Second, you and your organization need the will to change. Many changes are recognized, but they are either so frightening or radical that they are denied instead of accepted.

Making good money also depends on where you go in the current. Do you fit yourself too early to a change (that your customers may not even have noticed), you get a problem. Do you wait for the point of maximum security and only change when there is no other way, so too late, you get lost in the crowd and have to laboriously regain your top spot.

Making money is like being on the highway:

If you miss the last possible exit to the next gas station when the tank is empty, you will fall by the wayside! Conversely, you don't want to stop at every single gas station every few kilometers just because you're afraid that you won't be able to find any fuel later. But unlike on the motorway, there are no signs or automatic navigation systems in the electronic media.

1Scenario 1: The midfield disappears

The rich get richer, the poor get poorer. A tendency towards this can also be identified when making money with moving images. The midfield is dying away. There are only two types of providers left in the free market. One group is small and highly specialized, is one of the best and operates nationally or internationally at a level where competence, experience and talent can hardly be beaten.

The other group, the majority, serves the lowest price segment. A video for € 1,200? Sure, that's enough for an image film or a web video. This type of provider has also specialized. But not on quality, but on surviving on a low budget or no budget. Filming or staging is out of the question for this level. Filming shapes the offer (for the difference between these three types of production, see here).

Of course, when making money between the lowest segment and the cinematic nobility, providers are still fighting for orders in this scenario. But because they are chronically too expensive compared to the segment with low prices, and not sufficiently qualified to be involved in the high price segment, the majority of these providers sooner or later descend to the lower level, while only a minority manage to catch up with the top.

Drivers for this development can also be seen on the client side.

Because the market is getting tougher, many experts from the video business have switched to clients and agencies. They know from their own experience that the price-performance ratio is neither a problem for top providers nor for the low-end sector. But always only in midfield.

On the other side of this development is the fact that your career will no longer park yourself in midfield for three days and forever. You make it to the top. Or not. In either case, you no longer waste half your professional life with unrealistic dreams.

2Scenario 2: Make the fatal downward spiral for the money

The possible division of the market into a small group of highly qualified providers and a broad base of low-priced “video workers” is a veritable booby-trap for making money. On the one hand, there is no midfield in which future talents can prove themselves for the top spots. The jump from the very bottom to the top becomes almost impossible. But not only that. Because the majority of filmmakers work at unattractive prices and can hardly develop, the industry as a whole is becoming less and less attractive. That's the other side.

If, from a realistic point of view, there is little in the way of earnings and hardly a career, the greatest talents and brightest minds forego a career in film. You are looking for other fields in the creative industry and end up in the game industry, for example.

But where the brightest minds migrate, quality continues to decline and therefore price pressure increases. This sets in motion a fatal downward spiral. In the worst case, it ends with only the desperate (“I can't do anything but video!”), Ignoramuses (“It works somehow, can only get better!”) Or fools (“Do you want to be an actress? I work in film and have a project like that ») are willing to stay in business.

Nevertheless, that also has its good points.

If you have enough seat leather, you will see how new space suddenly arises for clever minds. Because the market and your customers will learn that competence in products that have to be characterized by effectiveness costs, but incompetence does not cost as much as incompetence,

3Scenario 3: Consolidation clears the market

Because the pressure on the midfield is steadily increasing, there are only two options for many market participants. Either work with a former competitor. Or stop doing business.

If you don't have a minimum size as a company, you lose the opportunity to pitch for the few large film jobs. This is due to the pre-investments required by the market, which drive acquisition costs up, but also because the customer does not have the credibility to handle this type of order.

Conversely, the cost pressure in the lower segment is so high that something can only be earned with constant utilization of resources. So that cameras, editing suites and staff can be billed to customers for more than just a few days per month, smaller companies and VJs are also joining forces and pooling their resources.

Because consolidation (the “grouping together” of companies, the word means “strengthen” in Latin, but not without reason!) Reduces the number of companies fighting for orders, supply and demand normalize again. Those who do clean and solid work are paid decently for it again.

4Scenario 4: Automation as an opportunity

More and more processes are being taken over by software. Digitization in image processing or during recordings, for sound or voiceover, is making great strides. Thanks to artificial intelligence, Adobe Premiere automatically creates a first cut version, automatically adds audio tracks to the image and corrects colors. The editor is now also a sound engineer and graphic artist and usually also a realizer.

Even if the industry is driving its own downfall when it comes to making money, because it makes filmmaking easier and more attractive for customers, it likes to and unconsciously push automation forward as a beta tester itself. Ultimately, at least in the short term, you can increase your own margin and extend survival a little.

Renderforest, Animoto or Bitable show where this journey can lead. The good thing about it:

Automation also creates new opportunities and professions. Not in the traditional professional groups, but for qualified professionals. At the same time, with digitalization, film is forever freeing itself from the curse of technology. Without this ballast, what has always been the recipe for success for moving images emerges again: storytelling.

Those who can tell stories stay and become more important again.

YouTube, Facebook and Co. making money

What is the purpose of YouTube, Facebook, Google, and other players that rely on the power of video? Make money! And how do you make more money when you have grown up as a video platform, marketing platform or portal for social media and you realize that videos are the future? Paying customers and free users are offered the opportunity to produce videos for them and also to market them at the same time.

Everything from a single source! Because you don't have to earn twice in the start-up phase or in the fight for displacement, but want to gain market share and acceptance, the prices are kept attractive. So deeper than an independent video production. Because Facebook, Google / YouTube or Amazon know infinitely more about user behavior based on their own data than the VJ from Mückenloch in Baden-Württemberg, these videos are also more effective. They fit the target group like a fist on the eye. The conversion rate is impressive. The offer to obtain integrated marketing campaigns including video content from a single source is convincing and makes sense for the client. The "normal" video producer, as the world still knew him until 2020, suffocates.

What remains is the amateur filmmaker. He survives because he doesn't have to make money from his videos. You can read here why this scenario has narrow limits from our point of view.

🚀Feature film and public TV

The European feature film business is highly subsidized. No feature films without government funding. Feature film funding is cultural funding or economic funding. Because tax money is involved, (unlike in the free market), when the funds are allocated, strict attention is paid to fair compensation. The focus here is on quality. This should be bought at market prices, but not at dumping prices as in the order film.

This also applies to non-private TV providers such as ARD, ZDF, ORF (Austria) and SRF (Switzerland). Here, too, play the rules of predatory capitalism when making money only limited. At least in the medium term. Feature films and TV productions play in the same market as their private competitors. Even if the cultural scene and the public service are always politically shaped, changing market conditions also have an influence on these genres in the long term.

What is the scenario for making money with video?

Anyone who claims to be able to create trends and forecasts with a probability bordering on certainty is Not serious. But assumptions and scenarios help to prepare for possible developments. Just because we at Filmpuls, as an industry participant, are shaped by our current market environment doesn't have to be the truth.

All of the scenarios mentioned in this article can coincide. Or none of them. Or only parts of individual forecasts. Think about what we said. But don't let that take away the joy of working with video. Because as a professional you have long known: in film as in life (almost) everything is possible.

📌 Your experience counts!

Did you do your homework and have you and your company advanced with it? Or are you still not sure what the right money making answers are for you? Tell us about it!

Whether in the form of a contribution about you and your company or as an open interview and coaching - our editorial team offers you more than just the chance to exchange experiences and help colleagues in the industry. Filmpuls is also a platform with which you can get into conversation with well over 10,000 readers per month. Take a look at our interviews.

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