Vimeo PRO offers users a customizable player.
Vimeo has made its name by offering free and low-cost streaming to semi-professional video producers to host their online video files since 2004. But anyone running a small business and wanting to monetize their video was out of luck: Vimeo’s site guidelines prevent advertising or other money making activities that would disrupt the community of video lovers the company has carefully tended all these years.
But with the launch of Vimeo PRO this past Monday, Vimeo, the IAC-subsidiary, figures it knows something about the market that no one else has bothered to address. The sweet spot? Video streaming for businesses that is simple to use and price competitive. Pegged at $199 a year, Vimeo PRO’s simple price structure includes 50GB of storage and 250,000 plays. Need more storage? You can buy it in increments of 50GB at $199 a pop. Found yourself with a viral video? It will cost you another $199 to purchase an added 100,000 viewings. That’s about as complex as the price matrix gets.
That’s a relief. Trying to figure out charges per stream delivered—which is how most streaming services describe their prices—is a rather opaque metric for most of us running a small business. KISS (keep it simple, stupid) rules.
That’s just what Dae Mellencamp, Vimeo’s General Manager, stated in a press release: “Until now, quality video hosting has been expensive, confusing, and extremely difficult for a small business owner to understand. Small businesses have fallen between the cracks of free video services and massive enterprise video solutions.”
Brightcove, one of the leading video streaming suppliers, pegs its lowest cost offering at $99 a month. At that price point, users are allowed to manage up to 50 videos playing out some 40 GB of bandwidth per month. Other services such as San Francisco-based VidCaster are coming to market too; they start at $39 a month for 10GB of storage and 50GB of bandwidth.
More costly services like Brightcove—one of the leading companies in the streaming video field—also offer extras that may or may not be important to you. For example, Brightcove offers “Live DVR” (Allows viewers to pause, rewind, review and replay live streaming video), realtime multi bitrate streaming and live event advertising (to monetize live events with advanced advertising capabilities).
Vimeo PRO offers customization and logo presentation for small businesses.
Vimeo PRO isn’t some bare bones offering either. Besides the exceptional video quality the company has been known for, other features include customizable Portfolio websites, extensive video player customization, Video Review Pages, advanced statistics, social media sharing and broad privacy settings.
Production companies will be able to create many separate portfolios and share rough cuts with clients, while other small businesses will find some of the related capabilities useful for their particular needs.
To get a better idea of how streaming video charges stack up, you can check this page at CyberTech Media Group. The company, which is itself a provider of streaming video services, tears down pricing structures to come up with some interesting facts. If you accept their reasoning and figures, they make the very compelling statement that “if less than 1,000 minutes of video will be watched from your web site per day, you probably don’t need to pay for additional hosting for your streaming video.” If this is the case, CyberTech states that you should just use your current ISP.
Of course that still means you will have to know how to place video on your ISPs server and install a player on your website, which a service like Vimeo PRO makes about as simple as possible to do. You’ll have to decide for yourself the best method for your particular situation.