Subscribing to a Cloud service means sleeping soundly. The Cloud has three functions:
- Making a backup of the data that has taken months to create (are you crazy to keep them only on your hard drive?).
- Allowing you to use your content everywhere that a buyer might ask you urgently, even if you are out of your home.
- Using your cloud service bandwidth to send content to Microstock agencies (you can do that for free with multcloud.com).
I will tell you a story that will make you understand how important it is to save your files outside your home. A few years ago I was the story editor of a program that was aired on MTV Italy. We filmed a few episodes in Africa, moving there a dozen people with very high costs compared to what we used to do. Our production was totally crazy, so it happened that we had only one copy of the footage (usually it was stored on an external hard drive), because:
Everything was low cost and often there was no dialogue between colleagues employed in the various stages of production.
So even making a backup copy of the footage was too difficult.
At first, the technician of the group had planned to prevent any crash buying what he called:
The Indestructible Hard Disk
A Lacie Quadra: metal case, professional cooling system, designed by Neil Poulton. In my opinion, it was beautiful to see it on my desk, but please never buy it.
Hiring a designer to produce a computer accessory is like hiring Michelangelo to create a loaf: I bet the baker does it better.
Lacie Quadra is designed to work standing upright. Once I was talking to a colleague and I accidentally pushed it. The disc sat horizontally, without falling off the desk.
We were editing with Avid. It showed the message:
Anyone who has worked with that software is used to seeing it, but in that case it was not because of a database error: the disk broke and I had the worst 30 minutes of my professional life.
Fortunately there was a happy ending. We shot in Mini-DV so we managed to synchronize the footage again, thanks to the time code of the cassettes. Today that would not be possible to do, since footage is shot on memory cards, and they are erased and rewritten hundreds of times.
This story is just to make you understand the importance of subscribing to a cloud service. You have two choices:
- Spending $60 a year
- Risking to lose thousands of dollars
What do you prefer?
Here I was shooting a time-lapse in the Alps with a Canon G10 in 2009
The first reason why I recommend Amazon Cloud Drive is the reliability of the brand: Amazon needs satisfied customers, because Amazon risks to lose a lot of money with its core business with negative feedbacks.
By the way, I’ve already tried two competitors and I was not happy with them. Testing alternative services means to:
- Pay in advance
- Send TBs
And finally notice that the contract does not allow you to:
- Backup directly from an external Hard Drive (it happened to me with Amazon competitors!).
- The management software does not move the data from the original position in which they were loaded (it happened to me with Amazon competitors!).
- They say unlimited storage, and after a year they contact you saying that “unlimited is not exactly unlimited” (it happened to me with Amazon competitors!).
I subscribed to Amazon Cloud Drive in early 2015. You can start with a free trial month or with the “only photos version” (which is perpetually free) to test it.
Maybe in the meantime, a few services were launched and maybe now they’re offering the same features for $20 less, but ask yourself:
Is it worth it?
It’s somehow like accepting the advice of a seller who’s offering you a new phone contract:
Do you trust someone that you don’t know? Are you sure you want to risk to spend your time to do it?
My answer is: No! Not for saving only $20!
The cloud also gives you the opportunity to continue doing business while you are away from home. I was abroad producing stock footage. When you are in a big city to shoot (on the left I was in Barcelona in 2012) you have to stay focused on shooting, so you need to shut down your smartphone and check the mail only when you return to the hotel.
Once I was resting in my room after a very hard working day. I found the desperate message of a producer that watched one of my historical videos you can find on my YouTube channel. He was interested, and he urgently needed it. I think that there is no better word than “urgently” when someone asks you the copyright of your work:
Believe me, with that sale, I paid my subscription to Amazon Cloud Drive for several years.
I know what happens when you become a digital entrepreneur. It’s easy to spend more than you can afford, because you have to pay for:
- A good hosting
- A WordPress template
- Other software/services that you need to find customers (for creating a landing page, for finding more subscribers to your newsletter, for managing your social pages)
If you’re a Microstock producer sometimes you also need money for: buying new equipment, booking flights, hiring models. And it’s not only that: you will start earning months after shooting, so I know how difficult it is. But to make your job profitable you have to change your mindset. You’re a businessman and not a customer searching for the best offer. You need to have a different approach than you would have if the production of Microstock was just a hobby, because it only takes one error to make you lose a lot of money. Missing one single sale (Videoblocks pays the producer almost $49 for it) can cost you more than the price of a service you need.
You will never read a post of mine where I say:
It’s incredibly difficult to make money with Microstock. But believe me: