Video

Our Top Music Licensing Sites for Video Projects of All Sizes

In an ideal world, we would all work with a musician to create a custom track that perfectly embodies the feel of each video, builds at the right moments and falls off when needed. But most projects don’t have time or budget for that. With this in mind, we have compiled our three favorite places to get stock music tracks based on the quality of the tracks and the price point. 

We know that different projects have different budgets. A 15-second social media video that will be seen for a week at best and then forgotten for eternity has a different budget than a YouTube ad that will be playing for 1,000,000 people over the course of 3 months. Because of this we selected a premium price point, a low price point and a subscription based price point that we have been particularly fond of recently. 

Keep in mind that you generally do get what you pay for. If you pay more, you are going to get a better track. But we have found that these two particular affordable options have many diamonds in the rough buried in their library. What we generally try to avoid is the stereotypical corporate whistle-clap type of tracks and while these two options have those in abundance, they also have gold.

Our Favorite High Quality Tracks: Marmoset & The Music Bed

Starting at $200/track/project, these are the priciest of the options but these have the absolute best quality tracks out there, short of working with a musician directly. The types of tracks in their library are the types that you would be happy to listen to on the radio. They are that good.

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They also have phenomenal search functionality with a visual representation of when the tracks climax which is very unique and helpful. When we are making a video, we regularly sift through hundreds of songs to find the right vibe and both of these services make it much more efficient.

Although these are much more pricey, don’t just skip past them right away. If you are a small company or have special project needs, the staff at both of these are extremely helpful and willing to be very flexible. Reach out to them to see if there is any way you can work with them. Audio is one of the most overlooked aspects of filmmaking and can also make the biggest difference in the quality of your film.

The Affordable Winner: Premium Beat

Rife with whistle-clap songs, PremiumBeat.com is extremely affordable. A little pricier than some place like AudioJungle but the quality is a big step up. We have found many good tracks in there that will work perfectly for quick social videos or even some lower budget video ads or ecommerce product videos.

The key here is to make sure you sift through *a lot* of songs. I generally stick with a fairly broad search and go through as many songs as I can in order to find the good ones buried in the library. If you start to get dismayed at the quality, just persevere and listen to another 50 songs. You will eventually find the good stuff.

Unlimited Subscription: Sound Stripe

This has been one of our favorite places to license music recently because they have a monthly subscription for unlimited licenses. This is absolutely fantastic when you are putting out a lot of social videos or producing a bunch of product videos that you want to all have the same track. The quality is on par with Premium Beat in our experience and if you are going to consistently need multiple tracks a month, it just makes sense. 

Another nice aspect about this service is that, if you just want to test out a track, you can download it without a watermark in the audio to send to clients. It is a minor thing but one that we appreciate.

All the others

Stock music sites are cropping up like weeds these days and whenever we see a new one, we will quickly search through their library to evaluate them. Most of them are either too expensive or the quality is just too low. We are always looking for places with that perfect balance. These are the ones that we have loved using recently, but it may change by next year so send us any that you love and keep an eye out for an updated post!

True Life: I am a Social Media Manager

It's that time of the year when everyone is on vacation, so we decided to give our blog writers a much deserved time off and repost one of our top performing blogs of the year. We hope you'll enjoy it, and have a great rest of the summer!

For whatever reason, it seems as if the most commonly asked question when meeting someone for the first time is, “What do you do?” I usually respond, “Well, I am a Social Media Manager (SMM).” This is usually followed by the person responding with, “Oh! You get paid to sit on Facebook and Twitter all day?” Sound the record scratch! While this is partly true, marketers and numerous brands/companies know that this is just scratching the surface. While social media is an ever-evolving industry, it is obviously so much more than just “posting to Facebook and Twitter.” In any given day, I wear many different hats.

In a typical day, I converse with clients and coworkers, create engaging and valuable content, analyze analytics of ad campaigns and content, research and plan future posts and campaigns, and monitor the different networks for engagement and mentions on behalf of my clients.

I recognize that the social media world is confusing for business owners to navigate when they have been focused on their trade for much of their career. Social media for businesses came quick and has turned into a whirlwind of an industry. The thing that some business owners may not understand is that being an SMM is a real, full time position that goes far beyond posting current specials and commenting when someone likes their status.

Creating and analyzing ad campaigns are two of the largest responsibilities for a SMM in more ways than one. Building campaigns properly to get traffic, engagement, and to hit goals, is crucial. My clients have entrusted me with their money and expect that I will use my industry knowledge to gain them results. Once the ad is created, I’m not on coast-mode. I optimize throughout the month to make sure it’s delivering, and if it is not, I tweak it.

I review this information and create content with the goal of resonating with the type of people that are responding to the different posts and ads. My clients provide me with photos and specials they have going on to align with their advertising goals. I also keep an eye on local events that may attract people to the area because my clients are in the hospitality industry.

When I’m not focusing on ads or creating content, I’m monitoring the different social profiles that I manage. I engage with the followers and answer any questions that get directed to the brands. This is one of my favorite parts of my job. It is exciting to see when my content has been a success and the positive feedback that my clients receive. It is also beneficial for me to see when content doesn’t generate any form of engagement. This lets me know I need to try something else in the future.

All in all, I am in a field that is constantly evolving and requires a lot of detail, research, and thought. I consider myself to be a part of the small percentage of people who are paid to do something they are truly passionate about. Like everything else, it is not always rainbows and lollipops. There is responsibility and even liability of speaking on behalf of a brand. I look forward to this challenge, amount of responsibility, and sense of purpose I am embarking on as a newly hired Social Media Manager at Thin Pig Media.

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Boomerang: 1-Second Video Loops Everyone Loves

What is Boomerang?

Boomerang is an Instagram app that allows you to create mini videos that continually loop back and forth (much like the toy “boomerang” itself.) The app essentially takes a quick burst of photographs and combines them together to make a soundless, 1-second video. It’s a fun and unique way to add something a little “extra” to your videos.

Why it’s great:

One word: simplicity. Anyone who’s used Boomerang before will tell you that it’s one of the simplest apps to use! Once the app is open, you only have to hold down one button to capture your mini video. The content of the video doesn’t need to be complex either, as you only have a brief moment to capture the subject in action.

Boomerang for your business:

Businesses can take advantage of Boomerang to showcase their products, services, and culture in a unique way. Users are more likely to engage with, and remember a Boomerang post more than they will a normal video. This is due to the quick succession and aesthetically pleasing way in which information is relayed.

For example, IKEA used a Boomerang to announce its new bicycle:

Vans captured its “free spirit” vibe with this Boomerang:

@leilahurst cutting loose like it's Friday. 📸 @jatecson #Regram from @vanssurf

A post shared by vans (@vans) on

Ulta Beauty frequently uses Boomerang to show off new product releases and makeup tutorials:

#Repost @lovemelisamichelle

A post shared by Ulta Beauty (@ultabeauty) on

Jus by Julie loves to promote a healthy lifestyle by featuring its employees eating its product:

Using the Boomerang app is simple, effective and engaging. With a video length so short, the possibilities of content are endless. Let your creative juices flow and spice up your Instagram posts with these mini videos.

Adobe Spark: Content Creation for Every Skill Level.

What better time of year to talk about one of my favorite (newer/revamped) products from Adobe, Adobe Spark, than on the 4th of July. It just seems fitting as I listen to all of the bottle rockets and roman candles being fired off by the neighborhood kids. No, Adobe Spark won’t blowup or light your neighbors overgrown lawn on fire, but it will help you put on quite a show for your fans, followers and clients.

Adobe Spark is comprised of a suite of apps which allow users to create social graphics, animated videos, and web stories. According to TechCrunch, “the Spark collection is effectively an upgrade and rebranding of a trio of apps Adobe already operated – its Adobe Post App became Spark Post, Adobe Slate became Spark Page; and Adobe Voice became Spark Video”. Along with the apps, Adobe also released a web version which allows its users to access the apps using their browser. Long story short, Adobe Spark lets your average, everyday user create stunning visuals and content without having to take a 2-year training course.

 

Spark Post

Spark Post allows users to create graphics for social channels in a quick and efficient way. It offers multiple professionally-designed templates, various themes, the ability to place and edit text, as well as an auto resize feature that adjusts your images automatically for different social channels. Once you’ve got everything looking extra pretty, save your image and upload for your fans and followers to enjoy.

Spark Page

Spark Page allows users to layout their favorite photos and information in a creative and unique way and share them with the world. Think of it as your own simplified web page. Users can upload photos from their own devices, cloud storage or use stock photography. You can then add motion or text to make a fun and informational viewing experience. Spark Page works great for showcasing products, events or for sending out your weekly newsletter.

Spark Video

Last but not least is Spark Video – which allows users to create stunning videos in a matter of minutes. Choose from a wide variety of themes and layouts to create engaging content that is sure to capture the attention of your viewers. Users can stitch together photos, videos, and icons and then add text to clearly communicate their message. You can also add music from your personal library or Adobe’s stock library to give your video the full professional touch.

Do you need help with your social media? We’ve got a team of professionals ready to take your business or product to the next level. Drop us a line at http://thinpigmedia.com/contact-us/.

Clips: Apple's Answer to Snapchat and Instagram?

With rising competition between Instagram and Snapchat, Apple has entered this space with an innovative creative camera app that goes about it in a different way. Apple's Clips app lets users film social videos and edit them by combining clips, adding photos and videos, and sharing on any social network. The end result is similar to Instagram and Snapchat videos with filters, titles, and emoji stickers but its key differentiator and perhaps where it will truly shine is that it is social media network agnostic. Whereas a video created in Snapchat can only be shared on that platform, videos created by Clips can be shared on any network including via text messages and iMessages.

Another innovative feature of Clips iOS the ability to record subtitles by speaking into your device. The app will even time the appearance of words on-screen to match the cadence with which you speak including emphasis and speed.

Clips also hopes to succeed by implementing a more traditional user experience design. We have all heard the cliche that nobody over the age of 30 understands how to use Snapchat and Apple is responding by what some people are calling Dadcore UX. As explained by Mark Wilson from Co.Design: "It’s not beautiful UI. It’s by no means subtle. And frankly, there are so many buttons on the Clips screen–with upper and lower menu bars!–that it’s hard to imagine anyone not being a little bit overwhelmed compared to alternatives like Instagram, or even Snapchat. But it is designed with a very specific purpose that plays to Apple’s strengths–a massive user base that, with the right instruction, could learn to use the internet in new ways, too."

Similiar to last year's release of iMessage Stickers, it will be fascinating to see how brands will take this new tool to create engaging marketing for their audiences.