WPMUDEV white label videos – make sure you read the small print

So we’re always on the lookout for white label instructional videos to offer our students.

For those who don’t know, the term “white label” basically refers to a product manufactured by one company that is legally packaged and resold by other companies under different brand names.

For the online marketing niche, white label products are one of the fastest ways to offer value and content to your customers without developing all the materials and documentation yourself.

Today, we found a white label solution that we thought might have been too good to be true and our instincts were right.

We stumbled on the WordPress Video Tutorials from WPMUDEV.org. WPMU stands for WordPress Multi User (the multi-site version of WordPress) and this organization has been around for a long time.

I’m actually a fan of the company because they have built a pretty impressive business around the WordPress multi-user community.

We saw that the package they were offering seemed to have all the makings of white label gold.

Their marketing language:

  • 100% White Label re-brand as your own
  • Automatically Updated – never go out of date
  • Professional Quality by the WPMU video team
  • Fully Hosted you pay nothing
  • No advertising crisp clear, better than youtube
  • Integrated into WordPress use on pages or inside admin area

Sounds absolutely fantastic! How much does this all cost?

You scroll down past all the marketing for the site and when you get to the bottom and you see the call to action.

WPMUDEV-pricing

All this for $39.60 the first month? Sounds great to me.

Now most people are going to assume from this that the true cost of these videos and it’s a great deal.

Here’s the finely glossed over fine print. Remember that first graphic we looked at? Well they told you it was fully hosted and you “pay nothing”.

watch-for-fully-hosted

That’s not quite accurate.

While you technically “pay nothing” for the hosting, it turns out the setup and implementation of these videos is a little more sticky than the marketing would have you believe.

The Easy Part

Once you pay for the reduced price first month of membership (remember that word), you do get access to all the videos embed scripts.

First you download the embed scripts and you can size and embed that in WordPress wherever you want your WordPress training video to appear.

True to their word, the videos are polished and professional and do deliver the goods.

The Small Print

A “minor” step for installing these videos on your domains is registering each domain. You have to go to your WPMUDEV dashboard and add your domain.

Their text from the dashboard:

Support Videos API

To embed our unbranded support videos into your sites, you must first register their domains here. Otherwise the embed code will return an error message. If you need to embed the videos into an https encrypted page, you must change the urls in the embed code to begin with https:// instead of http:// for them to work.

That’s cool right? Umm not so fast.

While it’s easy to register a domain and have it work, remember that WPMUDEV.org is a membership based site. The next logical question is, what happens if I quit at any point?

Too funny.

We had fun searching for the documentation around this and it was as expected – the small print. We had to search deep for this in their terms of service.

Some of our services such as Anti-Splog, Video or Auto-upgrades require the use of an assigned API key. You may only use your API key on sites that belong to you or those of your clients. You must maintain an active subscription with WPMU DEV to make use of API services.

There it is ladies and gentlemen. Once you embed their videos and get your customers hooked on them, the true annual cost of this service is:

1 month at $39.60 + 11 months at $99/month = $1128.60

I think it’s pretty safe to say that most people would NEVER imagine that they were signing up for over a thousand dollars a year to use a video embed service. To be fair, the $99 a month does include a lot of plugins, scripts and useful WordPress stuff but STILL….

The moral of the story people is, read the fine print before you buy or subscribe.

I’d love to hear your stories about internet pricing and the perils therein. As always, use the comments below.

Leave a Comment Below

    • I know what you’re saying, but there’s an ethical way to do it. 1,100 a year vs YOU PAY NOTHING is deceiving and hurts the company long term.

    • So if you went to a store and it said, free shirt you pay nothing, only to find out after getting ready to buy the shirt it cost $100 dollars you’d be happy? They have to make money, but that doesn’t mean you throw morals and goodwill out the window.

      • Perfect analogy. Regardless of whether it’s online or not, the intentions of the company should be pure. If they’re not, the company will collapse eventually.

  • Thanks for putting this out there. Very shady move from them. I have no problem charging, but don’t false advertise.

  • Just like those AS SEEN ON TV ads, this is a cheap shot. Sadly, it doesn’t shock me, which is why I’m always on the lookout for the fine print, especially online!

    • Exactly like that. Shipping and handling at the bottom for $20. They just want you to get invested in the product then spring the additional charges on you.

  • This is a spectacular breakdown and analysis of a company being underhanded. Thanks for sharing and exposing them for this stuff!

  • Thank you for the warning. I cannot stomach that there are people and companies that have no problem doing this to customers. There’s no ethics in this at all. Pathetic!

  • Thank you for posting this public service announcement, Onuora. That’s pretty much what it is, because you’re saving people from con artists like these guys. They should be ashamed of themselves.

  • Thank you for the heads up on the small print. I do see some opportunities when it comes to while label videos. They have done most of the work creating and hosting the videos now you need to market them to get the traffic. The thing to remember with white label is you are free to do with them what you want no restrictions. So branding and up-charge on your site using a plugin like CoursePress would be useful. Granted you would have to get lots of users and charge a large enough fee to offset the membership but it is possible.

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