Marketplace vs Agency

Better a marketplace or an agency to sell and buy footage?

As many may have noticed, we advertise mediaCastpro as a “marketplace”, often emphasizing that we are not an agency. But what does this really mean?

Agencies are companies that acquire videos from contributors and then resell them on their own, giving the contributor a percentage of the sale price.

A marketplace, on the other hand, is a platform where sellers and buyers meet directly and can transact with each other. Examples of marketplaces are eBay and Amazon.

More schematically, we could say that the differences between a marketplace and an agency are as follows:

  • ๐Ÿ’ฐ In the marketplace, it is the contributors who choose the price of the footage. They are the ones who sell, they are the ones who choose the prices. In the case of agencies, on the other hand, prices are chosen by the agency itself, and the contributor often has a very limited opportunity to influence this choice.
  • ๐Ÿ•‘ Footage uploaded to the marketplace do not have to receive prior approval: any content uploaded is put online immediately. Only if there are reports will the content be checked and possibly removed, if deemed illegal. In the case of agencies, on the other hand, content must undergo prior approval before being put online: this means much more waiting time, the inability to sell extremely topical content, and the risk of having content rejected even if it is perfectly legal.
  • ๐ŸŽ The sales commissions that the marketplace retains are much lower than those generally retained by agencies (25-30 percent versus 60-85 percent). This is possible due to the fact that the marketplace has less work to do, and therefore requires fewer staff: for example, it is not necessary to immediately view and approve all uploaded footage. In the case of mediaCastpro, which is a B2B marketplace, the work required is made even less due to the fact that the participants in the platform are only professionals, so presumably people who know their way around the world of videography and its laws.
  • ๐Ÿ‘” On the sales page of each video, the name of the seller must appear clearly, and with each completed transaction, each party must see the other’s name. While in agencies the contributor who uploaded the footage can often be anonymous, this cannot be the case in a marketplace. In the case of the marketplace, in fact, the sale is direct between seller and buyer, and it is therefore legally essential that each party be aware of the identity of the other. The marketplace is a facilitator, handling payments, video storage, and invoice generation, but the sale is still formally direct between seller and buyer.
  • ๐ŸŽฅ On a marketplace you can upload footage on any topic, of (almost) any length and using (almost) any codec. Since we are not an agency, we have no convenience in placing constraints on the content: everyone can sell and buy what they find most useful. Much of the marketplace constraints are purely technical: for example, for obvious reasons, the codec must be recognized by our preview generation engine, but other than that we do not place additional constraints on the codec.

Hoping to have made the differences clearer, it is now up to the reader to figure out whether he or she prefers to use a marketplace or an agency.

For any further details or information, you can read the About us article or write to us at