If you are doing
any online marketing or any kind of branding and development online, then using
images and videos in your content is no longer optional.
The more engaging,
creative, unique, and eye-popping your content is, the more likely you will be
to grab the attention of your potential customers long enough for them to read
Many people prefer to see than read. Using videos and images in your marketing content is giving your viewers what they want. Remember, people are bombarded daily with emails and ads so you want to do whatever you can to grab their attention.
Unless you are a photographer or videographer, finding high definition images and videos can be a challenge. You don’t want to use anything you see on the web because it is likely to belong to someone else and can get you into legal trouble with regards to copyright infringement.
Hiring a photographer or an agency to create a video for you can be very expensive. Luckily there are several free sites where you can download and legally use both videos and images for your online content. Before downloading and using any image or video from a “free” site, be sure to check out the licensing information.
Those under creative commons public domain are free from copyright restrictions, whereas other sites require attribution to be given when using their visual content.
If you are looking for an easy-to-navigate site for specifically themed visuals, Unsplash is a great find and is up there with some of the best free stock photo sites. The photos are grouped into themes such as:
- Food and drink
If you don’t know exactly what category you
want to use, you can search their collections of the week to get some ideas.
The license agreement allows you to use any images from Unsplash at no cost for both commercial and personal purposes.
Although attribution is not required, it is
appreciated by the photographers who donate their work.
Videvo offers a large assortment of motion graphics and video footage that is sorted by categories or you can view all clips.
You can sort by clip type, category,
resolution and license. Pay attention to the license for each clip you want to
use. The licensing information is on the download page.
There are four types of licenses to choose
- Royalty Free: Free to use for your projects without requiring attribution. However, you are not permitted to re-upload the clips or make them available for download elsewhere.
- Creative Commons: Can be used in any project but must give credit or attribution to the original creator. See more about Creative Commons here.
- Videvo Attribution License: You can use clips with this license as you can with royalty-free clips, but you do need to attribute the clip to the creator. You are not permitted to re-upload these clips or make them available for download anywhere.
- NASA Guideline: Get more information about clips from the NASA collection here.
As is the case for many free sites, Videvo
offers premium upgrade options for those who need or want access to more video
Powered by Shopify, Burst is a resource providing stock photos that are free for commercial use including using images on promotional items such as mugs and t-shirts.
You can use images free of charge, and you are
permitted to crop, edit, and modify them any way you so desire. No attribution
All videos on Coverr can be used for free for
commercial and non-commercial purposes. No attribution is required but always appreciated.
You are not permitted to use videos for brands, trademarks, or logos. For more information about their license, read the FAQs.
You can sort videos by latest or by categories
If you have your own videos that you would like to contribute to the Coverr community, you can submit them on the website.
Once reviewed, if they are accepted, they will
be available for others to download under the Coverr license.
If you are looking for unique, creative, or quirky free images, you should visit Gratisography. All images are high-resolution and completely free with no copyright restrictions.
As getting your content to stand out by using
compelling visuals is the name of the game, using images from Gratisography is
a great place to start.
Clipstill offers both free and paid royalty-free stock videos for your online digital projects. Although the number of free clips is relatively small compared to the premium ones, they are of high quality and changed every month.
It is worth your while to check back monthly
to download new video clips for current projects you are working on or for
Attribution is not required but as with other image and video sites, always appreciated. There are circumstances where you are limited in your usage of their videos such as if you are using a clip as the main attraction for a commercial project. Check out their licensing page for clarification.
Freerange requires you to sign up for a membership to download their vast collection of free high definition photos.
You can use images for both commercial and
non-commercial purposes. Choose from photos or illustrations in various
categories such as:
- Arts and music
- Animals and insects
- Flowers and plants
- Food and Drink
- Health and fitness
Images are licensed for commercial use. You are not required to give attribution. As with other sites, Freerange welcomes contributors.
Life of Vids
Life of Vids offers free clips with no copyright restrictions available for commercial and personal use. However, they don’t want anyone to use their entire collection of videos on one site. Hence the redistribution is limited to 10 videos on other sites.
Another excellent site for finding high-resolution quality photos is Kaboom Pics. Search from categories such as:
- Beauty and fashion
Stock Footage for Free
Stock Footage For Free is a site for professional quality stock videos and footage. All clips come with a royalty-free license.
This means you can use all downloads for
commercial and private use after you sign up for a free account.
Some of the sites listed above have smaller
collections than others, and some specialize in certain types of visuals.
Having several sites for free images and
videos will help you find the perfect visual for all your digital marketing
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