In-House, Collaborative and Licensed Content: Weighing Your Options

Posted by Team Simian on Dec 1, 2015

Video content

So you’re ready to begin development on your own video content strategy. Awesome! But what’s the best way to get started? What options are available to you? Which are most affordable and which will get you the most bang for your time and effort (and revenue) buck?

The best part is, there is no right or wrong way…just options!

Below are the three key approaches to this surmountable task and their breakdowns by Pros vs. Cons. Think of your strategy like a recipe… Mix a little creativity with a little collaboration and add in a dash of curation to round things out and before you know it, you’ll be on your way to branded video content bliss in no time flat.

Ready? Let’s get started:

Just Do It: Create

Control freak at heart? That’s not necessarily a bad thing. When it comes minutely managing every aspect of video content creation from end-to-end, hiring an in-house creative or a dedicated freelancer is the clear-cut option… with a couple of exceptions.


  • Creative Control: From storyboard to visuals, tone, message and length. It’s all you.
  • Production Control: Teams, timelines, publishing platforms and promos. You decide.
  • Analytical Control: You know your audience best. By controlling every aspect of the process, you can quickly hone in on what and doesn’t keep them engaged. In short, you become your own expert.


  • Production Cost: Since you’re paying for end to end production costs, difficultly controlling them may arise when it comes to scalability, resources, time and expertise required.
  • Resource Strain: Does your team possess the appropriate production capabilities? Do they have the time to consistently create?
  • Creative Development VS. Proximity Bias: Holding all of the creative cards can be a great thing. That said, because of the vested interest and closeness to your brand, your content is at risk of becoming over-branded and singular in its vision/direction. A biased vision can result in difficulties with next–level strategy development.

We Can Do It: Collaborate
Need a little help thinking outside the box? Since fresh ideas are paramount to a successful content campaign, developing video content in collaboration with content creators or social influencers can help kick things up a notch and best of all, enhance your reach.


  • Word of Mouth: Enjoy the added benefit of leveraging the power of the collaborator’s social influence.
  • Lower Cost: Pay for the collaborator’s service only as opposed to full production costs.
  • Enhanced Creative Development: Fresh input and fluid idea sharing with an expert in what audiences want to see and where they want to see it (YouTube, OTT, etc.).
  • Increase Publishing Volume: Saved production revenue can now be used to increase volume.


  • Diminished Creative Control: Your idea vs. their vision.
  • Wrong Fit Risk: Choose your collaborator wisely in order to avoid creative vision that is not on-brand.
  • Cost /Time Variations: Additional effort required to address the aforementioned issues = $$$/delayed delivery.

It's Done: License
Prefer to cherry-pick from a ton of ready-made content? Curating and licensing video may be a great option, either as a supplemental addition to your content strategy or as the main thrust behind it.


  • Eliminate Production Costs: No in-house or freelance hires required.
  • Enhanced Content Options: Content options are endless, from professional quality to user-generated. License viral videos, home videos, videos from filmmakers, and even GoPro made videos.
  • Increased Publishing Volume: Minimal cost gets you tons of great content, making publishing frequency more affordable.
  • Increased Traffic/Engagement: An expanded content offering generates more traffic and enhances brand exposure.


  • Ownership/Usage Legalities: From All rights reserved to Creative Commons and dedication to the public domain there are numerous hurdles that can limit or restrict usage. 
  • License Time Restrictions: Licensing timeframes can be limited.
  • Lack of Creative Control: All content is preconceived and created and non-branded, which may present issues when searching for a specific type and tone.
  • Variable Costs: Licensing fees may vary.

We hope this helps you gain a bit of insight into your options for video content generation and curation.
Got a hot tip to share? We’d love to hear from you! Post it below!


New Call-to-action

Topics: Video Production

Subscribe for Blog Updates