Media

Vimeo debuts paywall options & ‘tip jar’ to reward video creators

Image Credit: Vimeo
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Popular video-sharing service Vimeo has introduced new ways to reward the creators of videos posted on the site, with the ability to put videos behind a paywall and a new “tip jar” so people can contribute to video artists.

Vimeo has made a lot of big steps in 2012, and the site currently claims to attract 75 million monthly unique visitors. Thus far, the company brought in new CEO, redesigned its main site, launched a wide array of apps to bring in more mobile users, and integrated with Dropbox. Now Vimeo wants to give its deep community ways to make money using the service.

First up, it will immediately offer a “tip jar” on all videos so viewers can throw a little cash at the creators they love. Vimeo will pay 85 percent of the gross revenue to video creators.

The paywall situation is a little more complex. In the first quarter of 2013, Vimeo will offer a “pay-to-view” platform to Vimeo Pro subscribers that want to make money showing films and episodes. It will be a flexible platform that allows creators to set control over the price, rental duration, and other settings. The company will take a cut of each transaction, but it is still figuring out what that cut should be.

“We’ve wanted to offer this for a long time,” Vimeo CEO Kerry Trainor told me. “We don’t know how big this will be, but we’re excited to see what it becomes.”

Offering a paywall for videos is a big step for IAC-owned company. It represents a way for Vimeo to attract more Pro subscribers and earn more revenue on taking a cut of a video or film rental. The company’s largest revenue generator is subscriptions, second is advertising, and third is transactions. Ideally, this could bump up how much money it gets from transactions and boost subscriptions. “We’re bullish on the growth of our subscription service,” Trainor said.

As for advertising, Trainor told me the company is looking into new ideas for ads as well. One way the company made some cash recently was by partnering with Old Spice and Wieden + Kennedy to bring a crazy interactive ad starring Terry Crews to life. It will continue to explore its options like this. Trainor said the company would have other announcements this year, so we’ll see if new ad products come into play.

Check out the video below for more on video monetization.

Photo credit: Vimeo