Media Storage Tips For Content Creators

The Top 3 Media Storage Tips for Content Creators

File management tips and storage product recommendations.

Learn the importance of properly storing your content and how it will help your business.

Being a content creator is fun, adventurous, and extremely rewarding. But there is something even more important behind all of the pictures, videos, and subscribers. Media storage!

Talking about content organization may not be the most exciting topic. However, having the proper systems in place early on will benefit your business and make you more efficient in the long run. Knowing where all of your footage is can pay dividends for future projects and licensing deals.

Your most valuable asset is your footage as a content creator, so don’t lose it!

Let’s get into the top 3 tips for media storage.

1— Never Delete Anything

To save on storage capacity and costs, it may seem like a good idea to delete footage that you’re not using. Yet, this assumption could not be further from the truth. The price of external storage has decreased significantly, so it makes sense to invest in storing content. Always keep your jpegs, RAW files, and more.

Why Should You Keep Everything?

Having a stockpile of content backed up is beneficial for two reasons:

  1. Using old photos and video clips for a new project.
  2. Brand licensing deals.

In recent years, there has been a popular trend on Youtube and other social platforms where creators share a rewind of their year. These can be shared as videos or stories and often include favorite vlog clips, travel destinations, milestones, etc. Creating this content would be impossible without having a media storage system to archive everything. By simply storing all of their footage, they could create an entirely new piece of content out of something old.

Now, let’s look at the second reason you need to have a media storage plan. 

Imagine that you have some incredible drone videos, and DJI reaches out to license the original footage for an upcoming advertisement. Without the correct file management, here are two possible scenarios:

  1. You deleted the footage and can no longer provide that file.
  2. The footage is saved somewhere, but you have no idea where.
Drone Photo Media Storage

If you decided not to keep those files, a huge opportunity was missed to make money as a creator and work with a major global brand.

A lost file can be just as troublesome, but at least you know it’s somewhere on the drive. You could waste hours of your most precious resource (time) trying to locate the file. The key to good content storage is saving something and organizing it where it’s easy to find when new content ideas or a licensing deal arise.

2— Always Practice Media Storage Safety

You can never be safe enough when it comes to digital media management. The following techniques below are common best practices to reduce the probability of losing footage.

Import Your Footage Daily

Pull all of your SD cards from cameras, drones, etc., and import your pictures and videos onto an external drive at the end of each day. Doing so will result in fresh memory cards that are ready for the next shoot and ensure your footage is safe.

Do Not Rely on SD Cards for Media Storage

Leaving your footage on memory cards is a common mistake that many new content creators make. It’s easy to wait until the card is full and then upload the files. Accidents happen, you could drop a camera down a cliff, or your drone could fly into the ocean. What are you going to do if the SD card is damaged? The simple answer is nothing; all of that content is gone forever. You will lose your latest and previously recorded content by only using your SD card for media storage.

Do Not Store Media in One Place

Everyone knows the phrase “don’t put all of your eggs in one basket,” which also applies to photos and videos. While importing footage onto an external drive is excellent, always have a backup drive. If a drive becomes damaged or corrupted, you have a safety net.

Take Proper Care of Media Storage Devices

Take precautions when handling and ejecting external drives from your computer. Failing to press “Eject Drive” on your computer can completely corrupt all stored data. Dropping or slamming hard drives can damage the internal components rendering the footage useless. For SD cards, having a protective storage case adds another layer of protection.

SD Card Case Media Storage

3— Organize Footage So You Can Find it Later

One of the most significant benefits of good media storage is it improves your file structuring. You can have the best storage systems, but it’s relatively useless if there is no organization. By using a good naming structure, files are found quickly and efficiently.

File Naming Structure Format:

Year-Project Location-Day-Short Description-Camera/Drone Model-Photo/Video

File Naming Structure Example:

2022-Bali-Day 1-Waterfall-Mavic Air 2s-Photo

Tips for File Management

  • Create a folder for each trip/project. 

  • Within the main folder, create an additional file for each day. 

  • Be sure to name something based on what you did that day.

  • Once you have made the daily folders, now add a file for each camera or drone.

  • Finally, add photos and videos into individual folders.

No matter how much time passes, doing this will allow easy retrieval of your content. If you’re ever feeling lazy, think about future licensing deals or content that may take your content creator business to the next level.

Where Should Content be Stored?

There are quite a few options for media storage, including cloud storage, which has become increasingly popular. Let’s get into the different options.

External Hard Drive (HDD)

An external HDD is one of the cheapest and most reliable media storage options. They are relatively fast for 1080p footage and allow you to work directly off the drive when editing in Final Cut Pro X or Adobe Premiere. Many modern-day computers ship with less than ideal storage, so external drives are a great alternative.

Product Recommendation

Seagate Portable 5TB External Hard Drive – 3.0

With its sleek portable design and up to 5 TB of storage, content creators will love the compact size and power of the Seagate Portable 5TB. Your media storage needs are always within reach, whether in the studio or on the road.

Key Features / Specs

  • Size Options: 1-5TB

  • Form Factor: Portable 

  • Read Speed: 120 Mbps

  • Downloadable Toolkit Backup Software

Ultra High Speed Drives

A high speed drive is like a hard drive on steroids. It’s plugged into your computer, where it can act as the main drive. The super quick read and write speeds make it a tremendous in-studio editing tool. If you find your computer struggling when working in post-production, having a high-speed drive can make all the difference.

Product Recommendation

LaCie 2big Dock RAID 8TB External RAID HDD

The LaCie ultra-high-speed drive is a powerhouse that will alleviate bottlenecks when your computer’s built-in memory simply won’t cut it. Easily configure RAID 0/1 using the step-by-step wizard and have peace of mind with the five-year limited warranty protection plan.

Key Features / Specs

  • Size Options: 8-32TB
  • Form Factor: Stationary 
  • Read Speed: Up to 450 Mbps
  • Equipped with hot-swappable IronWolf Pro enterprise-class drives

Solid State Drive (SSD)

External Solid State Drives are better than traditional hard drives because of their quick read and write speeds. In addition, they are more durable because there are no mechanical components.

Product Recommendation

Samsung T7 Portable 1TB SSD

Content creators will appreciate the Samsung T7s‘ super-fast write speeds and advanced heat control for optimal performance. Its ultra-portable design and durability make it great for on the road use.

Key Features / Specs

  • Size Options: 1 TB

  • Form Factor: Portable

  • Read Speed: Up to 540 Mbps

  • Includes USB Type C to C and USB Type C to A cables to connect to PCs, Macs, smartphones, and other devices

Long Term Media Storage

For footage that needs to be archived, there are two great options. Remember, you always need two locations for content storage!

  1. Google Drive
  2. Long Term Hard Drives

Google Drive has many excellent plans that are super affordable, with enterprise account options offering unlimited storage. The extreme flexibility and remote access from anywhere make this a great storage choice as you grow your business.  

Long Term HDDs should serve as a secondary location for your media storage. This type of storage offers the lowest cost per gigabyte. The slower read and write speeds are not designed for editing or any intensive work.  

Product Recommendation

Seagate Expansion 8TB Desktop External Hard Drive USB 3.0

Key Features / Specs

  • Size Options: 500 GB- 18 TB

  • Form Factor: Stationary  

  • Read Speed: Up to 120 Mbps

  • Includes an 18 inches USB 3.0 cable and 18-watt power adapter

Ready to Become A World-Class Content Creator?

I hope you found this guide helpful in learning about media storage and the importance of building efficient systems for your business. Interested in content creation but don’t know where to start? Check out my brand new 10 Day Creator Challenge here!

Let’s get lost in the next one!

This guide links some of my favorite products and services to use as a content creator. I have partnered with these companies and earn a small fee from each purchase at no additional cost to you.