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How to become Freelance Video editor?

Video content trend is booming! Nowadays, businesses of all kinds and sizes are betting on video content marketing. TikTok, YouTube or Instagram, all these platforms are supporting video content creators massively.

According to Statista, the global video editing software market size reached 779.8 million US dollars in 2018 and is expected to increase to 932.7 million US dollars by 2025. 

This kind of content brings a lot of engagement and connects influencers and brands with their target audience closely.

And as a result of this trend, demands for all positions around video content production, specially video editors, are exploding.

Whether it’s marketing, promotions, or film production, successful video editors can meet changing video demands with various clients.

If you want to become a freelance video editor, you’ll need to develop skills and knowledge and build your portfolio.

This article explains the steps you can take to become a freelance video editor, some important question answers, and tips that may help guide your career.

What is a freelance video editor?

A freelance video editor is simply someone who is employed by a company, agency, or individual to conduct video editing work.

They might work on a documentary, marketing and promotional videos for a company or helping to create engaging video content for a vlog or social media. Video editors follow procedures to ensure the final product is of high quality. 

They use film making methods, such as editing footage, to tell a story or direct the action.

Video editor have one of the most responsible functions in video content production. He must understand the director’s idea and vision of the final result, take the raw materials and make the vision real.

He simply transforms the director’s idea and vision in an emotional video content.

Therefore, a good communication skills and high portion of empathy are required to become a freelancer video editor.

What does a freelance video editor do?

Video editor is a professional who edits raw video material and create the film of this material. He is responsible to bring structure to the story and telling it in the most effective and compelling way.

Moreover, their responsibility is also color correction or grading, adding and adjusting of the sound , adding and editing special effects or various sorts of video coding or exporting.

The main tool they are using is video editing tool, where they are able to perform all the actions like cutting and putting together the whole material and so on.

How you can become a freelance video editor:

1. Learn the Software for Video Editing

If freelancing as a video editor is a battleground, your editing platform is your sword. There are many platforms to choose from, so spend some time getting to know the one you like best. You can try out Final Cut Pro, Adobe Premier, and Pinnacle Studio, the best video editing programes.

There is always more to learn about each software platform’s unique features and capabilities. Adobe Premiere Pro is my favorite and only app for editing.

Final Cut is easier for people who are just starting out to use, while Premiere Pro is more professional.

You can choose which one to start with, but most professionals will use Premiere Pro. Take some classes and finish the modules, but the best way to learn is by practicing.

If you prefer a more affordable option, start on YouTube. There are many interesting video guides on how to learn to use these tools.

2. Define your positioning

It is hard to be generalist nowadays. You have to focus on one potential market for your services. Different kinds of materials require different ways of work and knowledge.

Animator, studio editor, film or document editor or marketing media editor. There are so many directions you can choose and establish your self as an expert in the particular area.

Think about what materials you are most likely working with, because you will spend a lot of time working with them.

3. Practice, Practice, and Practice

Learn how to use video editing software and keep generating practice videos to improve your abilities. Maintain a positive learning attitude, and look for opportunities to interact with others video editors in person or online.

Create your own projects! Start creating your own videos with materials you shoot in your area. You will not only gain experience with the tools and processes of video editing, but you already have some content for your portfolio you can use.

You should keep working on projects even if you think your portfolio is complete because this is how you get new abilities and improve the ones you already have.

3. Display Your Portfolio

Thanks to the proliferation of internet job boards, finding and bidding on work is easier than ever before. You can find work as a video editor by signing up for a gig service like Fiverr, Freelancer, people per hour, or Upwork.

A biography, samples of your work, and rates are all common features on online promotion platforms.

You can build your portfolio on all these platforms, but as a beginner, I would suggest you simply create a website portfolio and also put your work on social media. Simply use the best of your content you have created during the phase you learn use the tool and software you have chosen.

Display your portfolio, so you can show your work to your potential client. Your portfolio is the work you did before that defines your quality.

Researching the market can also help you establish how much video editors in your area charge for their work.

It’s also a good idea to let potential clients know that you’d be pleased to meet and review your work personally with them. You can collect email addresses and other contact information by putting a form on your website. 

In order to maintain your name in the minds of potential clients, you might provide them with information about your services, such as video production or editing.

4. Build a Strong Network

Make an effort to build a network of people in your field who can assist you grow your business. Your network could put you in touch with mentors, advisors, or other freelance editors who could give you advice and tips.

Starting with a physical site to establish a connection is vital for those who don’t have prior experience. 

With a workplace nearby, you can watch and learn from your colleagues. Your network might start out small, with just family and friends, but let everyone in it know you’re looking for work and, when it makes sense, ask for referrals.

Join online groups or see if there are video editing clubs or groups at your local community college.

5. Start with Considerable Rates

The main goal, if you are a beginner, is to get your first clients and gain some experience.

With such high volume of produced content today, there is a high chance you get your first client without experience. There are many people ready to give you the chance to jump in this field, but you must be ready to offer something in exchange.

I am not advising you to start selling your hard work and service cheap, but you have to start somehow and in most cases, when people give you the chance to show what you can deliver for them, they are running a higher risk with you as a beginner. And therefore they are not ready to pay the highest prices.

6. Learn business fundamentals

As a freelance video editor, you are running your own business. That’s the best way how to think about the service you are offering.

Therefore, some business fundamentals are must if you want to bring this to another level.

Soft skills like communication, negotiation and marketing are a must for any successful freelancer.

And as you are a freelancer, you are taking all on your own. Learn about contracts for video editors, invoicing and taxes, and all the administration you will need for your department as a freelancer.

8. Never stop learning

The world of video production is moving quickly. There are always new trends and technologies which affects the work of video editor. And you have to keep up with all these trends.

If you see your future in film production, I would maybe consider some higher education, a bachelor degree like “Bachelor of Arts” (film studies, cinematography). Just search for universities in your area.

It is not really required, and it depends on what you want to achieve as a video editor.

Personally, for me, it is enough to follow all these professionals on social media and find out how they create those beautiful videos. There I’ll find the most inspirations, and it keeps me up with all trends in this industry.

9. Skale you business

Once you establish your self as an experienced professional, you can bring your freelance video editing business to the next level.

To scale, you could build your own team and create a video editing agency or a studio to offer your services to the broader audience.

As you gain more experience, you will become not only expert with the tool you are using, but also with all processes in video production. This allows you to take the business to another level and offer more to your clients.

More business means more clients and more income, but also more responsibility. At this stage, you can decide what’s the best for you.

I am repeating that it isn’t necessary to have a vast experience, as everyone starts with the first step. You can also become freelance video editor with no experience. All it requires is hard work and consistency. 

5 Freelance video editing qualifications 

There are some of the most critical skills you need to become a freelance video editor. Some of these are things you need to have, like a computer, and others are skills you need to work on.

  1. A high level of video editing software knowledge like Adobe Premier, Adobe After Effects, Final Cut Pro X, Lightworks, and so on.
  2. An computer with good performance that fits the requirements of the software
  3. Additional hardwere skills based on the area you want to jump in
  4. Great communication and interpersonal skills
  5. Problem-solving skills
  6. And of course a bit of imagination and creativity

You’ll develop your own style as a freelance video editor based on the experiences and education you’ve gained along the way.

Tips for freelance video editors

Here are some amazing tips to help you start your freelance video editing career:

  • Start imidiately shoot videos and try to turn them in to a nice piece of a short film
  • Build your portfolio along the way you learn use the software
  • Get ideas for new projects from your peers and colleagues.
  • Try to get a job as a video editor assistant
  • Track your time and work fast.
  • Get your storage in check.
  • Utilize exports or renders to take breaks.
  • Label, organize and make it dummy-proof.
  • Utilize Vimeo for rough cuts and even final cuts.
  • Have a financial safety net.
  • Stay versatile.
  • Have a file sharing service ready to use.

How to find freelance video editing jobs

Let’s now look at some practical suggestions for finding freelance video editing jobs. It still requires a lot of face-to-face interaction and networking to get yourself in front of new clients and enterprises.

While it’s always nice to meet up in person when you can, a freelance video editing career can be pursued from home or anywhere else in the world.

Here are 5 steps to follow:

1. Join a video-specific Slack group. 

2. Go and attend networking events for video editors.

3. Scour LinkedIn and job boards.

4. Get certified as a Vimeo Expert.

5. Make a profile on gig-centric websites.

Career advise from real freelance video editors 

Finally, I’d like to provide some tips from professional freelance video editors on how to begin your own video editing business. Find out how to improve your talents and how to land work with these helpful tips.

Is it possible to become a freelance video editor if you have the following skills? When it comes to video editing, these skills are commonly seen as the best among them.

  1. Stay focused on people, what they need, and their goals.
  2. Be Hungry to learn and continually progress.
  3. Have Values communication and feedback.
  4. Maintain An innate understanding of storytelling.

How to start your freelance video editing career 

So, how can you get started as a freelance video editor with all of the skills and experience you’ve gained up to this point? As a result, the answer is more complicated than it would be for a more straightforward career path. 

Freelance video editing is by nature either an on-or-off proposition. If you’re currently working as an editor for a paying client, congrats! You’re a self-employed video editor. 

For the time being, you’re not a freelance editor if you’ve never done any editing work at all. Follow these steps that are mentioned above to become freelance video editor.


Do you want to become freelance video editor with no experience? Do you love learning about how to make videos? You might be good at making videos. Right now, video content is the best way to market, which means that a huge number of potential clients need editors. 

How can you use this in your favor? This guide will show you how to become a freelance video editor. The best part of freelancing is that you are your own boss. To get the job you want, the best thing you can do is show excitement for the job.

Showing how much you want the job is always better than showing how much you want the money. Employers are interested in how you feel. Tell them how you can solve their problems and how reliable you are.

Let them know that you are the one they have been looking for a long time. If you love to do freelance video editing, your skills are highly demanded. Every day, people worldwide watch an incredible 500 million hours of YouTube videos.


How do freelance video editors make a living?

Payscale says that the average hourly rate for a freelance video editor is $20. (in the U.S.). It mostly depends on your experience, your reviews, and your quality. For example, making YouTube videos pays less than editing promotional videos for small businesses.

How much do video editors get paid?

The US Bureau of Labor Statistics says that the average annual salary for a video editor is almost $59,500. A video editor’s average hourly rate can be $20 to $40. (in the US). A professional editor can make up to $80,000 per year, while a new editor can make up to $40,000.

How do I start working as a video editor?

1. Choose and learn a genre

2. Develop and practice your skills

3. Consider getting a degree

4. Ensure you have the right equipment

5. Use a website to display your portfolio

6. Make connections and network

7. Consider volunteering or lowering rates

8. Develop an appropriate billing system

9. Learn basic business functions

10. Build your online profile

11. Keep growing your business

What qualifications do I need to be a video editor?

As mentioned above, some video editors choose to get a bachelor’s degree, usually in film studies or production, even though it is not required. A degree might make it easier for you to get a job on staff or show that you are knowledgeable and dedicated to the job.

If you don’t want to get a degree, you can look for certification programs online or at a community college. Technology changes quickly, so continuing to learn keeps you up to date on new trends and developments.

Equipment for professional freelance video editor

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