Stock video footage meaning

Even if the funds were found, and the shooting went well, other problems may arise. In order not to waste time on such a big task, many content creators turn to sites with free stock videos.

Stock footage, also known as b-rolls, are videos that were shot by videographers around the world and posted on specialized video stock sites. Some people don’t trust stock videos and think that they are tasteless, unoriginal, and unpresentable. But this is not entirely fair: it is quite possible to assemble a decent looking content using secondary footage if you spend enough time and resources.

Stock footage example

Why use stock footage

Stock videos are suitable for making simple video presentations and other purely illustrative content, which most often works for team meetings or educational purposes. No one makes huge capital investments for creating such videos. On the contrary, everyone tries to save on filming and use only the most necessary things and involve no more actors than needed for the task.

Same goes for the very reason to use free video assets. If you’re working on a video with a common or general idea, like the relationship of people in any environment, there’s no need to look for actors and record them enacting your script when you can simply search for stock videos that deliver the same meaning.

Stock videos can also be used as the background for the segments when you talk about something and don’t want these segments to be blank monotone pictures.

Stock footage license

Note that different video banks offer different terms of license agreements. The most common ones are:

Standard license grants a non-exclusive right to use and modify the footage, in whole or partially, an unlimited number of times to create any product within the permitted use, however, it does not grant copyright and intellectual property rights. In many cases, the terms of the standard license prohibit commercial use of the final product.

Extended license, in some cases, removes restrictions on the video usage within the geography of display (including domain zones), and also allows the final product to be used for commercial purposes.

Exclusive license is the most expensive license, since under it the exclusive rights to use the footage upon purchase are transferred from its author to the buyer.

Stock videos and images example

Where to find stock footage

Finding the right content at no cost is not easy since many sites require subscriptions or sell videos separately. Here are some free stock resources where you can download high-quality recordings:

Pexels Videos

Pexels is a very popular library of royalty-free videos and photos, stored under the Creative Commons Zero (CC0) open license. It means that media files from this site can be used and edited for free, without specifying the creator. Also, if you subscribe to the newsletter, you can regularly receive new videos.


Videvo is a media library that is constantly updated and contains more than 70,000 4K and HD video clips. There are slow-motion shots, and various videos dedicated to nature, cities, and people. Before browsing the videos there, check the licensing options; one of them states that the videos cannot be distributed in their original form. But you can edit and process the video according to your needs for non-commercial or commercial use. In addition, the authors will ask you to support Videvo on Twitter or post a link on your social media page.


A well-known site with an extensive collection (over a million) of photos and videos in HD. It has a convenient search by keywords and topics, plus, the videos can be downloaded even without registration. Free video content is published under a CC0 license, so no permission is required to use or edit the video.


Videezy is a part of Eezy, a comprehensive photography source for web designers. It has thousands of high-quality videos, so you can find anything to your liking here. Videezy offers both paid and free options to users. If you go with the latter, all you need is to link to the source.

Stock media example

Tips: how to use stock video footage

If you’re willing to devote enough time and resources to working with stock videos, here are some tips to help you put together a high-quality video for any commercial task:

  1. Prepare the script. Define what feeling or emotion you want to convey exactly so it’ll be easier to search for the fitting videos.
  2. When you have the script, do not hesitate to adapt it when needed! If you are struggling to find footage with the specific action from your script, pick up another one that conveys the same meaning.
  3. Check whether the styles, colors, and overall feel of the videos are compatible. To keep the same vibes, you can edit videos if allowed by the license or take them from one collection.
  4. Try not to use the most common visual metaphors. Avoid images that are associated with stocks and make sure that the fragments that suit you are not in the videos of competitors.
  5. Use background music: it will help set the mood and can set the pace for scene changes. Videos with sound will be more dynamic and cohesive.

The rest is up to your creativity! Make a perfect piece of content by combining the videos you gathered according to your idea.