Video is all the rage right now.
As a musician, you already know the importance of video marketing. Music videos, for instance, are powerful tools for helping you get exposure, make more fans, and book more gigs. Today, if you aren’t using videos to market your music, you’re probably leaving opportunity on the table, because people have a short attention span, and videos appeal to those sensibilities.
When musicians think video, the site that immediately comes to mind is YouTube. YouTube is a fantastic platform, and it’s the world’s second biggest search engine just behind Google. But its strength is also its weakness – today, there’s 300 hours of video being uploaded to YouTube every minute. That’s 18,000 hours of content being uploaded every hour!
When there’s so much video being uploaded and shared all the time, how do you stand out on a site like YouTube? How do you create a following where there’s so much going on? I’ve seen some of my friends try, and it’s hard. I’m lucky to have a channel that I started in 2009 with over 150,000 upload views.
The good news is there are other video sharing sites out there, and other opportunities for getting exposure for your music. For instance, Vevo.
What Is Vevo?
If you’ve ever searched up a popular artist’s music video on YouTube, you’ve probably come across videos hosted by Vevo. Vevo’s name comes from the term “video evolution”. It was created by the big three record labels, Universal Music Group, Sony Music Entertainment, and Warner Music Group. Vevo’s videos are only syndicated on YouTube and their own website (which is why you’ve seen Vevo videos on YouTube before).
Though the platform was founded by major labels – and Vevo is dominated by their content – they also host independent music videos. This is great news if you’re looking to leverage the credibility that comes with having your own Vevo channel.
How Do I Get My Videos On Vevo?
Now that you know it’s possible to get your music videos on Vevo, you’re probably eager to get started.
Be forewarned that there are no guarantees your videos will be accepted by Vevo, even if you go through the right channels. But go through the right channels you must, as there are a limited number of partner that distribute independent content to Vevo. Fortunately, most of them are inexpensive.
In the same way you must go through a music distributor to get your music on all major streaming sites and online stores, you also need to go through an official Vevo partner to get your videos on Vevo. Here are several partners you can go through and what they offer.
There’s a good chance you’ve already heard of Ditto Music. That’s because they are a known music distributor, and offer several other products supporting musicians and music industry people. They can also help you get your videos on Vevo, even as an unsigned artist.
The process for getting set up is simple, and basically involves these three steps:
- Creating an account. As I already mentioned, it is necessary to create an account with an official Vevo partner. So, if you want to go through Ditto Music, first, you’ll need to create an account with them.
- Uploading your content. After setting up your account with Ditto Music, you’ll be able to upload your music video, which will get sent to Vevo immediately. For your video to be accepted, it must meet Vevo’s standards (more on this in a moment).
- Waiting for your channel to be created. This typically happens within 10 days of uploading your video content. If you already have a Vevo channel, then new videos should only take 24 to 48 hours to appear on your channel.
With Ditto Music, you get to keep 100% of the royalties earned through Vevo. I’ll talk more about royalties a little later.
So, what are Vevo’s content standards? Your video must:
- Be Full HD.
- Use H.264 video compression type.
- Be a .mov or .mp4 file.
- Be 1920×1080 (better) or 1280×720.
- Have a frame rate no less than 23.98.
- Have high quality (QT).
- Have a minimum of 7500 kb/s bit rate (unrestricted).
- Be de-interlaced.
- Use multi-pass encoding.
- Use AAVC format audio, in stereo, with a sample rate of 44.100 kHz and a bit rate of 320 kbps CBR.
- Avoid the use of webcam, flip cam, or iPhone footage, even if it’s high quality.
If you aren’t sure what any of this means, then show these specifications to your video editor and ensure they export your video with the proper specs before submitting your content.
Vydia is another official Vevo partner that can help you get your Vevo channel set up, whether you’re signed or unsigned.
First, you need to apply to have your videos reviewed. Vydia will check to ensure your content meets Vevo’s standards, and once your videos are accepted, you can set up your custom Vevo channel. Vydia’s review process takes one to two days, but they note that acceptance from Vevo can take several months, depending on how much demand there is.
Vydia claims the same promotional opportunities available to major artists are available to independents who sign up through them. Plus, any content that makes it onto Vevo will be syndicated through YouTube as well.
If you’re interested in working with Vydia, I would recommend visiting their website for more information.
Free Vevo is yet another official content partner of Vevo. They will help get your music videos into the hands of Vevo, and syndicate your content to Yahoo Music, Bet, MTV, VH1, Tango, Fuse TV and others.
Free Vevo claims any artist from any country can upload and monetize their videos using their service.
A basic account with Free Vevo gets you:
- One Vevo channel.
- Free unlimited video uploads.
- Videos published in 24 hours.
- Syndication to Vevo partner sites.
- Monthly royalty statements.
Symphonic offers a slightly different service than the ones already mentioned.
They will distribute your videos across some of the most prominent digital channels for $95 per video. They claim to get your video out to: Vevo, TIDAL, Amazon, iTunes, and Noiseporn.
If video distribution is something that interests you, and you want to get your video on as many platforms as possible, you might consider checking out Symphonic.
View Maniac claims if you have high quality videos, and you’re serious about your music career, you can get your content onto Vevo, which will give your career a boost.
You can contact them directly to learn more about how they can help you.
Though I’ve highlighted some of the most known Vevo partners here, you can probably find other businesses and services that will offer to get your video content onto Vevo.
I can’t necessarily speak to the legitimacy of any, because I’ve never used them for this purpose.
I would suggest doing some research and asking around. If artists you know have been able to secure their Vevo channel through a specific service, you might consider going through the same company. Before you shell out your hard-earned money for video distribution, find out if these companies can deliver on their promises.
Again, working with the right parties does not ensure that your content matches Vevo’s guidelines, so this is something you need to take care of first.
Why Should I Get My Music Videos On Vevo?
As I see it, there are basically three advantages to getting your own Vevo channel:
- Credibility. As you’ve probably already guessed, not all artists have a Vevo channel. Having your own could boost your credibility as an artist, and help you stand out from the crowd.
- Exposure. A lot of people are familiar with the Vevo brand because they’ve watched music videos on YouTube. Being on Vevo should help drive more engagement and exposure for your music and video content. Vevo also has proprietary promotional opportunities, such as Vevo LIFT and Vevo Presents, which can help get your name out across the globe. Don’t forget – content that appears on Vevo is also searchable on YouTube!
- Royalties. Artists earn royalties every time their videos are viewed on Vevo. If you sign up through an official partner, you are entitled to the same royalties major label artists are. Vevo offers the best payout of any video hosting service out there. You can earn more by publishing more and getting more views for your videos.
If none of these factors interest you, then perhaps Vevo isn’t right for you. But assuming you have the goods, it shouldn’t prove too difficult to get onto Vevo, so it’s worth a try.
How Much Can I Expect To Make On Vevo?
When it comes to building a music career, money isn’t everything. But as you distribute your music, sign up for a performance rights organization (PRO) and Sound Exchange, pursue licensing and placement opportunities, get your music on the radio, and so on, every bit adds up. There isn’t a shortage of channels you can go through to earn royalties as a musician.
While reading the above, the notion of making money from Vevo may have piqued your interest. Supposedly, their payout is the highest of any video hosting site out there. I can’t confirm or deny that.
But how much can artists expect to make?
Well, don’t get too excited. Per Amaru Don TV, artists stand to earn about $0.00222 to $0.0025 per stream. Sounds a lot like Spotify or any other streaming platform, doesn’t it?
So, as with anything else, if you don’t have a huge following watching your every move, you’re probably not going to become rich off Vevo streams.
But as I said at the outset, every little bit counts. It’s still worth getting your Vevo channel set up to collect whatever royalties you earn from the added exposure.
If I Manage To Secure A Vevo Channel, Should I Still Keep My YouTube Channel?
The short answer is “yes”.
The longer answer is that you probably won’t be able to get all your YouTube content onto Vevo, because Vevo was built specifically for high-quality music video content.
With YouTube, you can upload just about anything you want – vlogs and rants, podcast discussions and interviews, rehearsal videos, random goof-off sessions, and so forth. So long as you’re adhering by YouTube’s policies and guidelines, you shouldn’t run into any problems, and if you’re the content owner, you can monetize your videos too.
This is not what Vevo is for. I know I’m repeating myself, but Vevo is for music videos, and high-quality ones at that. So, there’s simply no way for you to get all your video content on Vevo, unless you’re only producing quality music videos.
Not to worry – you can maximize your reach by leveraging both your YouTube and Vevo presence. You’re going to be a little more hands-on with your YouTube channel, and a little more hands-off with your Vevo channel. So, your overall commitment to creating content shouldn’t change much.
If you’ve got great music video content, why not utilize both platforms? It can’t hurt to try.
If you’re anything like me, you aren’t just thinking about Vevo right now. You’re thinking about the broader spectrum of video hosting and sharing sites out there, and how you might distribute your content all over to get the maximum exposure possible.
Let me say this – and I’m talking from experience – you’re better off paying someone or using a service to do this for you. Doing it yourself will take far too much time, and at some point, you’ll just get bored of it and quit. Then, you won’t see much traction from your efforts, because it takes consistency and persistence to succeed in any endeavor.
But it is good to think about the vast potential of video marketing, and what it can do for you and your career. There are so many places beyond YouTube that are still underutilized by artists. It’s worth exploring your options and seeking out new opportunities, because you may come across some great ones along the way.