Andrew Michael Baron reported over the weekend that his popular daily video blog Rocketboom made $247,412 in 2006. He says that about $210,000 of that was directly from advertising and licensing fees, with the rest earned through other activities like consulting and merchandising. He’s not alone. Many other video bloggers are making decent part or full time living creating video content online, even if they aren’t pulling in Rocketboom-sized numbers just yet.
It seems like 2007 just might be the year when puppeteers could actually start to make all or at least part of their living creating puppetry for the web. I noticed in the past month or two several puppetry podcasts have started using Revver, including The Rag (show) and some of Swazzle’s podcasts. Personally, I think that the direct sponsorship model offers creators the most potential (that’s the approach Rocketboom uses), but there are a number of different ways you could go about trying to make money producing puppetry on the web.
Scott Kirsner maintains an excellent guide to video services that pay creators for content that he updates regularly and is probably the best way to compare the pros and cons of all the various services for video creators that have sprung up over the past year or so.
When I have a little more time I’ll post some thoughts of my own on the various business models that are out there and how puppeteers might be able to utilize them.