Month: October 2019

Background Music for Video: How to Pick The Perfect Track

Music is the literature of the heart, a French poet once said. Musical accompaniments to film are so powerful that some soundtracks outsell the movies themselves and some background songs become permanently lodged in the cultural consciousness. Consider Celine Dion’s “My Heart Will Go On”—it’s such a fitting power ballad of romantic yearning that it’s now impossible to hear it and not think about the movie Titanic.

Go ahead. Try it. Try to let Jack go.

If you find the perfect background music for videos, you can amplify their reach and resonance with very little extra work. Here are 11 practical tips for choosing the right music for marketing videos.

1. Decide What Role Music Will Play in Your Video

Some background music for videos is designed to provide a sub-perceptual lift. Other music unleashes energy, and other music matches what’s happening on screen and sets the mood. Ask yourself, what sort of video am I creating and what role do I want music to play?

  • Explainer Video or Demo: Use subtle music to maintain attention
  • Live Action or Story: Use clear music to explain and advance the plot
  • Advertisement, Announcement, or Promo Video: Use dramatic music to evoke emotion

If you work for a streaming music app and you’re making a video, maybe music is the main feature. Or maybe you’re a B2B tech company explaining a complex topic like how video marketing works and want something with an even tempo that adds interest without drawing attention. Or maybe you’re a non-profit seeking donations and a low, melancholy tone conveys the gravity of your message.

2. Understand Which Genres Make the Best Background Music for Videos

If selecting one track out of the limitless array of options seems stressful, narrow your options to just one genre. Here are some emotions that different genres typically evoke in videos for business:

  • Cinematic: Big, sweeping, grand, victorious. Like Nike.
  • Corporate: Engaging, inviting, unobtrusive. Like Marketo.
  • Ambient: Soothing, centered, calm. Like Influitive.
  • Acoustic: Empathetic, human, connected, sometimes melancholy. Like Canadian Tire.
  • Comedic: Bubbly, fun, bright, exciting. Like Vidyard.
  • Electronic: Cerebral, intelligent, curious. Like Apple.
  • Hip Hop: Edgy, fast, confident. Like Diet Coke.
  • Rock: Raw, gritty, substantial. Like Invision.
  • Funk: Bright, discordant, unapologetic. Like GoPro.

Not sure which genre will fit? Find a music library (more on that below) and listen to previews while watching your video or reading the script. It’ll become clear what fits and what doesn’t.

3. Use Music Intros and Outros as Bookends

A bookend is a short, three to five second snippet of music, usually paired with an animation or text, that indicates that the video is starting or stopping. Or if your video is really long, it can indicate the beginning and ending of each chapter. For example: Background Music for Video: How to Pick The Perfect Track 1

Bookends help viewers tune in and focus. When the video ends, they offer a sense of completion. Bookends are also a great branding move. If you’re producing a video series and the bookend includes your logo and the series name, it’s easily recognizable.

Pro Tip: Don’t have time to record an animation? Your bookend can be audio-only. Simply lower or raise to music to indicate that the video is beginning or ending.

4. Use Reference Music

Sometimes you already have a particular song in mind (or stuck in your head) and you can use it as your guide. Listen to it on YouTube, then try to find similar-sounding songs based on the rhythm, speed, progression, instrumentation, or key. Some royalty free music sites like Bedtracks make this easy: You can upload a song and it’ll find similar-sounding ones.

5. Know Your Budget

There are background music options for every budget. If your budget is:

  • Small: Look for music with a creative commons license, meaning it’s free to use, with a few small caveats. It gets the job done and options are plentiful.
  • Medium: Pay between $10 and $100 for a royalty free track from a music library. It’s often higher quality than the creative commons stuff and usually closer to what you want.
  • Large: Get custom music made for $300 to $1,000. Custom music is great for when you plan to reuse the song and want it to become associated with your brand, as is the case with the music from many commercials.

6. Consider Hiring a Composer

If you want custom music, there are lots of composers out there who can help you achieve precisely what you’re looking for. They’re particularly helpful when there are lots of mood changes in your video, or if it doesn’t match the music you find online.

An original score can also create a satisfying sense of consistency through a video series. If people recognize those tones, you’ll earn more mindshare when people scroll past them in their social feed.

You can find composers by Googling “corporate video composer” in your area or looking through the “Artist” section of most music libraries. Many artists are actually audio creation agencies who do custom work. You can also try the website Baby Can You Write My Track, which allows musicians to compete to create a track that matches your work.

7. Choose Music That Speaks to Your Audience

The more you know about your audience’s age, affiliations, and preferences, the more specific you can be about your music choice. If your viewers cover a wide swath of professionals in business, it’s best to play it safe with corporate tones, classic rock, and ambient music. But if you know that they’re younger, indie rock, hip hop, electronica, and dance music might be more appropriate.

If you know your audience’s age, the graph below from Statista offers clues. When in doubt, look at other videos that have performed well with your target demographic for guidance.

chart showing favorite music genres

8. Consider the Role of Frequency and Tone

If your video involves lots of talking, avoid music that uses the same notes and tones as the human voice—typically music that involves a guitar, violin, cello, viola, and parts of piano and keyboard instruments. It’ll make it difficult to hear the person speaking.

If you have to have the emotional tones that the above instruments convey, choose tracks that have simple melodies and repetitive chord progressions. But if you can, choose something that’s complementary to the human voice, such as a bass or ambient music.

The chart below explains how different musical frequencies can create emotions.

chart showing how frequency relates to emotion

9. Pace Yourself

If the music in your video suddenly pauses, it’ll grab people’s attention. Use these breaks to highlight an important moment, like a big reveal. Pauses work best when the track has a consistent rhythm so that there’s a pattern for the pause to break.Background Music for Video: How to Pick The Perfect Track 2

10. Using Off-Limits Famous Music

Sometimes you need a track that’s culturally recognizable, like the Star Wars theme song, but don’t have the budget for licensing. You have a few options: Either find a lookalike track meant to mimic the famous one, or look for older stuff that achieves the same effect but has entered the public domain.

In countries that are signatories to the international agreement known as the Berne Convention, copyrights expire 50 or 70 years after the creator’s death, at which point, their work is free to use. All the classical composers like Bach and Beethoven fall in this category, as does anything recorded in the U.S. prior to 1950.

You can find lookalike tracks on Partners in Rhyme and find older, classical stuff in the public domain on IMSLP. And if you actually do need that Star Wars theme, you can find some pretty good stuff with suspiciously similar names like “War in the Stars” on Storyblocks.

Where to Find Good Background Music for Video

So where does one actually look for background music? There are a limitless sites to choose from, but it’s important that you understand how music rights and usage work.

Most music out there was created by someone who wants to be compensated or at least recognized for it. If it was recorded by a major music production company, you’d better bet their lawyers are on the hunt for copyright infringements, so double check everything before you use it publicly.

You’ll probably see the term ‘royalty free’ applied to lots of music, and it’s a bit misleading—it doesn’t mean it’s free to use. It means that you can purchase the track once and use it an unlimited number of times without paying a royalty, or paying a tiny percentage every time it’s used. The opposite of royalty free music is rights managed music, where you have to pay a royalty.

Here’s an example: If I pay for a royalty free track that goes in my YouTube video which then goes viral, I don’t pay extra. But if I used a rights managed tune, I pay the composer extra based on how many people watched.

There are four types of song licenses you’ll find online:

  • Free: Any music in the public domain or which has a creative commons license, of which there are several types, ranging from completely free to free if you provide attribution to the artist.
  • Limited License: A royalty free song that you can use for a non-commercial purpose, such as an internal training video, but if you use it for marketing, you have to pay.
  • Paid License: A royalty free song you pay for and use an unlimited number of times, even in a marketing video. Could also be a custom track you commissioned.
  • Rights Managed: A song you pay for based on how much it’s used or how many people listen.

Marketers looking for music to use for videos can probably expect to use mostly free and paid license tracks.

How to Find Music for Videos

  1. Google ‘royalty free music’ or visit a site on the list below
  2. Search music by genre or mood
  3. Preview tracks, make a list of ones that’ll work
  4. Check the licensing: Are there limitations? Does it fit your budget?
  5. Purchase and download the song to use in your video
  6. Abide by the licensing agreement. If it says you have to cite the artist, cite the artist. If the license is for a limited period, make sure you set reminders to take it down when the license expires.

Top Sites for Royalty Free Music for Video

1. Bedtracks

screenshot of Bedtracks

Bedtracks features lots of tracks with visual detail about each song’s progression, so you know if it fits your video’s arc. Particularly helpful is the tab called “Storytellers,” with tracks that follow common narratives.

2. PremiumBeat

screenshot of PremiumBeat

Owned by Shutterstock, PremiumBeat is well-designed, easy to search, and makes figuring out the licensing a breeze. Search by instruments, mood, genre, and beats per minute (BPM).

3. Audioblocks

screenshot of Audioblocks

Audioblocks is an offering by Storyblocks, the stock image site. It’s got a really powerful search feature, and is a good place to find instrumental loops and sound effects.

4. Getty Images Music

screenshot of Getty Images Music

The interface isn’t exactly friendly, but Getty Images Music has an extensive library that includes sound effects and rights managed music. You can find composers through its rights managed music section.

5. Audio Jungle

screenshot of Audio Jungle

Owned by Envato, Audio Jungle boasts nearly 100,000 tracks including music packs and kits that make choosing easy.

6. Bensound

screenshot of Bensound

Bensound features lots of songs that are useful in the most common corporate videos, like jazz, ambient, electronic, and funk. It’s a great place to go for demo and explainer video tracks.

7. YouTube Audio Library

screenshot of YouTube Audio Library

YouTube offers royalty free music too. Its library is expansive and is unique in that it allows you to check the copyright status of songs in your YouTube videos.

Free Background Music for Video Editing

1. Free Music Archive

screenshot of Free Music Archive

The Free Music Archive is operated by a nonprofit dedicated to collecting and distributing mostly free music. Search by genre, musician, filmmaker, and more.

2. CC Mixter

screenshot of CC Mixter

CC Mixter is a site where new and unknown artists upload their work for others to use. The catch is that you’ll have to work out the licensing with the artist. The upside is maybe you catch someone exceptional on their way up.

3. Free Sound

screenshot of Free Sound

Free Sound is another nonprofit that collects sound effects and noises that are great for explainer, demo, and animated videos.

4. Incompetech

screenshot of Incompetech

Incompetech is a site for royalty free music that’s also mostly free, so long as you provide attribution to the artist.

Public Domain Music for Videos


screenshot of IMSLP

IMSLP is an online database with classical music from composers all around the world. It takes a little work, but you can search by composer, time period, and nationality.

2. PD Info

screenshot of PD Info

PD Info is a decent open source project for collecting public domain music with lots of stuff from the early 20th century. The interface is a little difficult to navigate, but the collection is extensive.

Once you’ve found the perfect music for your video, you can finish editing, and share it with the world.

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8 Free Video Resources to Make You a Video Marketing Pro in No Time

Learning new skills can help keep you engaged, make you more adaptable, increase your career opportunities, and even benefit your health.

Plus, it’s one of the big things that high performers—the people who get promoted—tend to have in common.

We put together this list of awesome FREE video resources to make it easy for you to make video the new thing you learn this week/month/year.

1. HubSpot Academy

HubSpot is an undisputed leader in the marketing world. Who better to learn video marketing from? (Except maybe us…)

Their free education platform, HubSpot Academy, includes a course dedicated to video: Start and Grow Your Video Marketing Strategy.

In under two hours, they cover strategy basics, types of content, production, and tracking.

2. YouTube Creator Academy

You’ve all heard the spiel—YouTube has 2 billion monthly users, it’s the second largest search engine, blah, blah, blah. You know YouTube’s important. So why not get skinny straight from the horse’s mouth?

YouTube Creator Academy is full of information on nearly every aspect of using the platform successfully, from channel optimization to monetization. Dive into full courses or sample individual lessons depending on what you’re looking to find out. Either way, there’s a ton to learn.

Bonus: You can actually get certified as a YouTube expert (either as an individual or as a company.)

3. Fast Forward

We might be a little biased, but we think that Fast Forward, The Video Marketing Virtual Summit, is a great place to learn how to execute a killer video strategy. The veritabel cream of the crop when it comes to video resources (especially free ones).

And it’s not all video marketing either. Fast Forward has sessions on video production, video for sales, video for internal comms, and beyond.

The sessions provide live access to industry leaders—including pros like Andrew Davis, Jay Baer, Matt Heinz, and more—as well as practical tips for video production and actionable tactics to take your video strategy up to the next level.

Best of all—you can get all of this awesome educational content from the comfort of your office (or your couch, no judgement).

Fast Forward takes place November 14, 2019. Register now to save your spot and receive updates about the action: Get notified when new sessions are added, find out when on-demand access to the recordings is available, and get valuable materials related to the sessions.

Bonus: Check out all the content from past editions of Fast Forward on-demand at your own pace.

graphic image showing headshots for three Fast Forward speakers

Don’t Miss Out on Fast Forward graphic image showing headshots for three Fast Forward speakers Learn video marketing from experts like Drew Davis and Matt Heinz at our annual virtual summit, Nov. 14, 2019. Register Now

4. Google Skillshop

Google and video ads seem like a match made in heaven. What better way to reach people than by delivering them a format they love through a vast ad network?

If you think video advertising might be good for your brand, you’ll definitely want to check out Google’s own free training program: Skillshop.

Start with the Google Ads Video basics (audiences, formats, and creative) then kick things up a notch by getting certified.

Or, broaden your skill set by branching out into Display and Video 360 with several courses and a certification.

5. Hootsuite Academy

While the majority of Hootsuite’s online education focuses (unsurprisingly) on social media, there are some great video nuggets to be found.
Plus, there’s a lot of value in understanding what works well on social media—one of the biggest channels for digital video content—when creating video.

Hootsuite’s Social Marketing Training is a great free resource—especially the lesson about Best Practices for Sharing Video Content.

Pro Tip: The course is free, but if you want to get certified, it’ll cost you $199 USD.

6. Marketing Profs Online Forum

Marketing Profs have long been thought leaders in the marketing space, so it’s no surprise to see them dive into video marketing.

Their Marketing with Video Online Forum features presentations from three top industry experts, live Q&As, and access to an attendee-only resource library.

The live event takes place on November 15 at 11 a.m. ET. Sessions last 45 minutes each. Plus, if you register but can’t make it, you’ll still get on-demand access to all of the content for 90 days after the live event.

7. Facebook Blueprint

If your business is on social media at all, odds are that it’s on Facebook.

Take your social game to the next level with Facebook Video Foundations, a free online course that’ll teach you everything you need to know about getting started with video ads on Facebook.

This free video resource includes ad delivery, best practices, and metrics.

8. Twitter Flight School

If the little blue bird is your constant companion in video distribution, then you’ll probably want to check out Twitter Flight School’s courses on Video Advertising on Twitter.

Course 1 focuses on foundations, with info about Twitter, video partners, and ad formats. Course 2 delves into campaign basics, walking you through how to execute a Twitter video ad campaign all the way from campaign creation through launch, optimization, and reporting.

Put Your Videos to Work Create, host, manage, and share your videos.

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How to Screen Record on Any Device (Plus: The Best Screen Recorders)

Almost every device—Macs, PCs, iPhones, and Androids—have a built-in way to record your screen, but each one is different. On iPhones, it only takes four steps. On PCs, you may have to use PowerPoint. (Yes, really.) And lord help anyone trying to screen record on Android who isn’t a developer. Below are step-by-step instructions for how to record your screen (regardless of your device or operating system).


  1. 1.What is Screen Recording?
  2. 2.How to Record Your Computer Screen
  3. 3.8 of the Best Screen Recorders
  4. 3.1 The Vidyard Chrome Extension
  5. 3.2 OBS Studio
  6. 3.3 FlashBack Express
  7. 3.4 Apowersoft Free Online Screen Recorder
  8. 3.5 Debut Video Capture
  9. 3.6 ShareX
  10. 3.7 Icecream Screen Recorder
  11. 3.8 TinyTake
  12. 4.How to Record Your Screen on a Mac
  13. 5.How to Record Your Screen on a PC
  14. 5.1PowerPoint Screen Recording
  15. 5.2Screen Recording Windows 10 (The Xbox App)
  16. 6.How to Record Your Screen on iPhone
  17. 7.How to Record Your Screen on Android

What is Screen Recording?

A screen recording is when you record a video of what’s happening on your device screen. You can use it to demonstrate how software works, build personal connections with prospects, share feedback, and save yourself from writing a long email. To record your screen, use either a built-in feature or download an app/tool.

  • Most free screen recorders can:
  • Record a video of what’s happening on screen
  • Record audio
  • Save the video, either to your device or the cloud

Some screen recording software (like Vidyard’s Chrome extension) goes further and lets you capture a webcam video of yourself talking, displayed in a bubble alongside your screen recording, so you can add a personal touch to your explanation.

Record your screen quickly and easily. Get the Vidyard Chrome extension.

How to Record Your Computer Screen

  • Vidyard Chrome extension (Mac, Windows, iPhone)
  • OBS Studio (Mac, Windows)
  • Flashback Express (Mac, Windows)
  • QuickTime (Mac)
  • PowerPoint (Windows)
  • Xbox app (Windows)
  • Native screen recorder (Mac)
  • Native screen recorder (iPhone)
  • Native screen recorder (Android)

8 of the Best Screen Recorders

1. The Vidyard Chrome Extension

Best for: Screen recorder and sharing
Price: Free, download a Chrome extension or app
Pros: Works on most devices, intuitive, allows sharing, no watermarks

For versatility, nothing beats Vidyard’s Chrome extension—it works on both Mac and Windows, and you can still use it on iPhone to record videos of yourself (though not your screen). Vidyard is great for recording demos, walkthroughs, presentations, and more.

On Mac and Windows, just download the screen recorder Chrome extension. On iPhones, visit the iTunes App Store.

Pro Tip: Vidyard is also a tool for hosting and sharing videos. It’ll upload videos to the cloud automatically (saving storage on your device), let you trim recordings, send videos via email with just a few taps, and get notified when someone watches your content.

2. OBS Studio

Best for: Long screen recordings, gaming videos
Price: Free, download desktop software
Pros: HD quality, unlimited length

Short for Open Broadcast Studio, OBS is a desktop screen recording app for gamers, but it can be useful for recording long marketing webinars or in-depth product demonstrations. You can stream footage live to YouTube, or if you’re a marketer in the video game world, Twitch.

Pro Tip: In settings, you can customize keyboard hotkeys to control the recording while it’s in fullscreen mode.

3. FlashBack Express

Price: Free, download desktop software
Pros: Edit your videos

FlashBack Express is also for gamers, and includes a built-in video editor so you can trim or annotate your videos before you export them, either to YouTube or your desktop. It doesn’t add watermarks to your videos like some screen recorders do, and has a feature I haven’t seen anywhere else: You can ask it to obscure any passwords you enter while recording, so you don’t give away access to your company’s systems.

4. Apowersoft Free Online Screen Recorder

Price: Free, download desktop software
Pros: Create GIFs, lots of export options

Apowersoft is good for tutorials, live streaming, live chats, and software demonstrations. It lets you create your own customizable keyboard shortcuts and export to lots of formats, including GIF. You can upload your completed video straight to YouTube, Vimeo, G-Dive, or Dropbox. If you want to edit videos, however, you’ll have to upgrade to the paid version, though there is a free trial.

5. Debut Video Capture

Price: Paid, download software
Pros: Schedule your recordings

Debut is different than other screen recording tools in two ways: You can capture video from external devices like security cameras, and you can schedule it to start new recordings. This is useful if you want to create a time lapse of, say, something you drew in Photoshop. It costs money, but not much: Just $3 per month if you pay quarterly.

6. ShareX

Price: Free, download software
Pros: Create GIFs, capture screenshots of scrolling web pages

ShareX doesn’t have the most intuitive interface but it lets you capture an image of an entire website where you have to scroll down. It can also recognize the text within those images, using Optical Character Recognition (OCR), in case you want to know what’s inside those screenshots.

7. Icecream Screen Recorder

Price: Free, download from Apple Mac Store
Pros: Annotate videos, zoom in

Icecream excels at video editing and annotation. Easily add logos, insert names, or zoom in on specific areas during a demo. You can export your video in lots of different file formats, and you can set custom hotkeys to record quickly.

Bonus: Icecream’s Screen Recorder supports over 50 languages, so it’s a good pick for global teams.

8. TinyTake

Price: Free, download software, Windows only
Pros: Bulk file sharing

Like the name implies, TinyTake is simple and easy to learn. It has a recording limit of five hours, but that won’t matter to most marketers. TinyTake is good for product reviews, capturing bugs, and recording demos. You can export video files in bulk, upload them to YouTube, or store them online.

How to Record Your Screen on a Mac

If you have the latest version of MacOS, Mojave, there’s a built in feature for recording your screen and it’s as easy as pressing a hotkey. (This is why people like Macs.) To use the native screen recorder:

  1. Press Command + Shift + 5
  2. Select whether you want to capture the entire screen, a window, or a selection (otherwise, it’ll begin recording the entire screen automatically)
  3. When done, click “Stop” to end the recording
  4. Your recording will appear as a thumbnail at the bottom right hand corner of your screen, click it to choose where to save the video

Alternatively, you can use QuickTime, which is native on all Macs:

  1. Open QuickTime
  2. Select “File” and then “New Screen Recording”
  3. Click the red “Record” button to start
  4. To stop, click the “Record” button again
  5. To save, click “File” then “Save”

Pro Tip: If you only need to save a screenshot on Mac, press Command + Shift + 4 and select the area you want to capture.

How to Record Your Screen on a PC

Screen recording isn’t a built-in feature on PCs like it is on Macs. The easiest way to record your screen on most is to use PowerPoint.

PowerPoint Screen Recording

  1. Open PowerPoint
  2. Click the “Insert” tab and select “Screen Recording”
  3. Select the area you want to record—to select the entire screen, press Windows Key + Shift + F
  4. Click the ”Record” button, or press Windows + Shift + R
  5. To end the recording, click “Stop”
  6. When it’s over, you can save the recording as its own file

Screen Recording Windows 10 (The Xbox App)

Microsoft preloads the Xbox app on Windows devices so you can record video games, but it works just as well for businesses.

  1. Type “Xbox” into the Windows search bar and open the app
  2. Hold Windows + G on your keyboard
  3. Click “Yes, this is a game”
  4. To begin, click “Record” or press Windows + Alt + R
  5. To end, click “Stop”

Pro Tip: If you only need to take a screenshot on Windows 10, press Ctrl + Print Screen (PrntScrn), select the area you want to capture, and release.

How to Record Your Screen on iPhone

Most iPhones have a native feature for screen recording.

  1. Go to Settings, Control Center, Customize Controls, and tap “+” next to Screen Recording
  2. Swipe up from the bottom edge of the screen (if using an iPhone X, swipe down from the upper right corner of the screen)
  3. Long press on the circle button and tap Microphone
  4. Tap to start recording
  5. When done, tap to stop recording
  6. You can find your recording in your Photos app

Pro Tip: If you only need to take a screenshot on iPhone, hold the iPhone Home Button and press the Power button on the side.

How to Record Your Screen on Android

The latest version of Android, Android Q, finally includes a native screen recording tool. That’s the good news. The bad news is that it’s hidden by default. To enable it, you’ll need to enable your Android device’s developer mode.

  1. Go to Settings, About Phone, and tap the “Build Number” button seven times—it will say, “You’re now a developer!”
  2. Return to Settings and select Advanced, Developer Options, Feature Flags
  3. Toggle on “settings_screenrecord_long_press”
  4. Now you’re set up to record your screen
  5. Long-press the screenshot button and it’ll bring up a popup menu
  6. Tap “Start Recording” (a new popup will display)
  7. Tap, “Start Now”
  8. To end, tap “Stop”
  9. The video will show up in your default photo gallery

Pro Tip: If you only need to take a screenshot on Android, hold the Power Button and down on the volume button.

The post How to Screen Record on Any Device (Plus: The Best Screen Recorders) appeared first on Vidyard.