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How much to charge TV company looking to purchase my footage | Cinematic Peru

jturner

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Hi, I'm new here but hoped this would be a good place to get some insight. I was contacted by a Japanese television company regarding purchasing some of my drone footage of Peru. They asked for pricing for both the entire edited video (attached below) and just the section featuring the rainbow mountains about 3:45-5:00. Feel free to skip through to get an idea of the variety of shots included. I have only once sold drone footage before to a TV show on the BBC and they offered a price that I felt was reasonable so I didn't need to come up with a quote. My question to you guys is how do you/would you go about pricing something like this? If it were you how much would you charge for this footage? Absolutely feel free to throw out some numbers. There was, of course, a lot that went into getting this footage and it was shot in a pretty remote area in the Peruvian Andes. This is also an edited compilation of the best clips from easily over 2 hours of raw footage.

Some more background on this video and what it took to make:
I filmed the entire video using my DJI Mavic Pro during 5 days of trekking in the Peruvian Andes. I had 5 drone batteries plus a power bank that I used to top off the charge after short flights. I kept the drone batteries in the bottom of my sleeping bag at night to keep them from freezing and draining the power. Most flights were done around 16,000 ft with the maximum altitude just over 19,000 ft above sea level. I had to fly very sparingly to conserve power throughout the trek. Each flight was carefully planned before to maximize the amount of good footage while wasting as little battery as possible. The footage was edited and lightly color graded in FCPX.
 

Red90

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It completely depends on the size of the station. It’s is national, or a regional cable channel? I’ve shot bespoke footage for the BBC here in the UK and charged a day rate for this, and also sold individual clips to them from footage that I already had shot and archived.

As you’ve already sold to the BBC in the past, you’ll know what a major broadcaster would be likely to spend. As it’s pretty unique (as opposed to areas that get flown & filmed a lot) you’re probably able to charge a premium & I’d advise this if it’s likely to be a one-off transaction.

I shoot for the BBC on a regular basis now, so offer them a preferential rate - but other channels get charged a different rate.

Your shots are great - don’t be afraid to charge decent money for them. But as the old adage goes, if they’re happy to pay what you’re happy to charge them everyone is a winner!

HTH,
Martin.
 
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PatR

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Don’t forget residuals to cover future re-plays. Doesn’t have to be big money but if they intend to profit through advertising with repetitive re-plays you should too.
 

Lensupthere

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As a former licensor of content for a software company, and now a producer of aerial content that is contracted or licensed, here's how we think about these things.....

Did you shoot the video with the intention of licensing it? Since it was captured in 2017 and they are just now asking, you probably shot this on spec, for use in marketing yourself/your company rather than to sell it.

Is it unique content? A brief search shows other YouTubers that have similar content, some probably have way more content of the same thing than you do.

Is it good content? You only published several minutes of footage from over two hours worth, why? Why no part 2 or 3? Is the rest of the footage not as good as (or repetitive to) the original 7 minutes 42 seconds?

Do you possibly have more content (or will make future content) that the company might license? If so, then establish a business model that is fair and makes it easy to work with you again.

If they are asking for the raw footage, they may not value your editing skills. Can't charge for that.

Pain and suffering (e.g. the "passion") to capture footage isn't usually added to licensing fees.

I'd say it (the entire raw footage) is worth somewhere around $250.00 USD (to them, because they probably are only going to use 5 minutes of it). Their licensing it doesn't guarantee that they actually use it in the end, and if that's a possibility, they are not going to pay much for it.

If you think it should be more, then tier out the licensing to be $250.00 USD for the first 5 minutes, and $125.00 USD for each additional 5 minutes of footage they actually use. You should get the first $250.00 whether they use it or not.

If you were hired to actually capture this footage, they'd pay for everything plus your time and expertise (your "eye" and "perspective" and creativity), and they would also own all the footage (work for hire). Completely different business model than licensing content that has been on the shelf for 2 years.
 

Red90

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With the greatest respect to Lensupthere, the BBC paid £150 each for.2 x 20 second clips that was used on a regional channel (albeit in one of their flagship programmes).
 

BigAl07

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The Travel Channel purchased about 7 minutes of unedited footage I shot and it was $3K total. They only used about 90 sec (total) but they bought the whole reel. This was 2016 though.
 
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jturner

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Thanks for the input guys it's very helpful. There's definitely a big range here but that's good to see. I guess that its all about perceived value to the customer. To put out some past numbers my previous arrangement with the BBC was £500 (about $650) for around 5 minutes of previously shot raw footage from Switzerland. The Japanese TV company is requesting the edited footage not the raw footage in this case. Shots of the rainbow mountain are a bit less unique because this spot can be accessed for day tours where the rest of the trek is much more remote. However, my footage of the rainbow mountain is made unique because of the fact that it was shot at sunrise with beautiful lighting and before any tourists arrived which greatly increased the quality of the shots. It is my understanding that the TV company is part of a travel corporation so it is definitely valuable for them to display the location to be as beautiful and pristine as possible. These are just some thoughts of mine that may or may not add to the value of the footage.
 
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JoeDimwit

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I’m going to approach this from a different angle.

What number would make you feel like you’re not being taken advantage of? Remember, you have time (both shooting and editing), skill (both shooting and editing), equipment costs, and travel expenses involved.
 
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