5 Myths of Custom Content

By January 26, 2016Design & Philosophy


At the end of the day, we love great content. It’s what we want to celebrate here at TripleWide Media, great media for great events.  And lately, the conversation has increased on the value of custom content. It seems to be preferred over stock media (what we provide) or pre-existing content, in most organizations and events. However, I think we put too much emphasis as organizations on custom content. I wanted to give a few myths of custom content and help see the greater picture, so here are the 5 myths of custom content:


Myth 1: Custom Content is Better in Quality.

First, I need to say that this is 100% subjective, because how do we really measure quality? It’s mostly on personal taste and style. When you ask a media house to design something for you, their skill set is in the designing, not necessarily in the exporting and converting side of media. Pixels are pixels, and with pre-existing media you likely have the chance to know the quality you’re going to get before getting into an expensive process. Who’s not to say they’ll design this beautiful piece of media and export it in a way that no software or program can play back well?


Myth 2: Custom Content Gives us Specific Control Over Style.

Of all the myths, this one I hear the most. It’s simply not true. I say that because over the last few years the amount of media that has been released to the stock media market, including sites like TripleWideMedia.com, has become so great in number, that the possibilities are endless. An aggregation site can show you a variety of style and design themes’ that no media house could compete with. From theatrical formal curtains to high contrast VJ content. An aggregator leverages the gifts of hundreds of designers, not just the one you hire.


Myth 3: Custom Content Allows Our Content to be Unique.

One of the things we’ve talked about before on the blog here is the concept of using media as building blocks. When we look at the media on a site like this as a potential layer, then we are able to make relativity custom media for a fraction of the cost and a fraction of time. Making your media extremely unique when you compare it to custom content options. A perfect example of this is the Blake Shelton music video that used all TripleWide Media content.

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Myth 4: Custom Content Makes us Look More Professional.

This is a very similar argument to myth 3. By layering specific files together, or even layering your logo onto a piece of content from our site, you can achieve the “look” of custom without paying the price of “custom”. Without question, the quality of media being made from our community of producers is bar-none some of the best media available on the web! I’ve seen countless pieces of “custom content” that don’t have the detail and definition most of our media has in them, and it’s simply because it costs so much to get such fine detail.

Furthermore, when you hire someone else to design something that isn’t their vision (I used to make content by the way), you’re asking them to be a service provider for your vision, not theirs. Which means that it can be very difficult for them to get extremely passionate about a project if you have a different idea for where it should go than you do. And anytime you take passion away from an artist, they don’t have the interest in going above and beyond. Most stock media is the vision of the artist, which means detail and definition are the utmost of importance to them.

Theres no doubt that this is just another one of the myths of custom content.

Myth 5: Custom Content is a More Fiscally Responsible Purchase.

Finally, we need to talk about the “budget myth”. You may be saying “if we make all the content we need, we’re more likely to utilize less media and save money” or “if we hire someone to make all the stuff we need, we won’t need to purchase media, thus saving money”. Both of these statements don’t factor in the full equation. Typically you’ll spend $30-50/hr for custom content if you hire someone part or full-time. Most design houses will charge $80-120/hr for custom content if you were to hire them out on a project-by-project basis.  I know from my own experience I would spend upwards of 5-10 hours on a single looping motion background. If you were to purchase something I spent 10 hours making, for only $10-12 from a site like us, rather than the potential $1200 for the custom price, You can get 10x the media, which you likely won’t need. So therefore, you end up spending WAY more than you need.

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Second, when you make custom content, it typically only has a very specific vision attached to it. Which limits it’s use-options. For example, a motion background made for a specific song that may only be sung once or twice a year. Whereas, stock media always thinks about general use, being able to get a lot more leverage out of a product that cost 1/10th the price. Yet again another one of the myths of custom content.


There is absolutely a need for custom content, but one of the reasons we’ve had the opportunity to work with groups like American Idol, Blake Shelton, Dolly Parton, Building 429, and many many other national acts, is because of our quality, variety and simple implementation of media that works. They save money, they save time and they save headaches, making their job easier. Take a look at the most common myths of custom content and let us know what we left out!

Luke McElroy

Author Luke McElroy

Luke McElroy is the founder of Orange Thread Media, the parent company to TripleWide Media, SALT Conferences and Orange Thread LIVE. He is the author of The Wide Guide: Blueprint for the Multiscreen Movement. Hailed as one of the “top innovators for worship” by Worship Leader Magazine in 2013, Luke’s leadership has helped create powerful worship environments for thousands of Church communities throughout the entire world. He currently lives in Nashville, TN and regularly writes about creativity, leadership and faith at LukeMcElroy.com 

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