Video marketing is becoming an increasingly important part of many small business marketing plans. But creating those videos can sometimes seem like a bit of an overwhelming task. There are plenty of options out there for people who want to go all in and create really intricate videos.
But if you want to just use video marketing as a way to share some quick visuals or messages with your customers, there’s Animoto. Animoto makes video creation and editing fairly straightforward. Here’s how to get started with making your very first Animoto video.
A Step-by-Step Guide to Using the Animoto Video Maker
Sign Up for a Business Account
The first step in using Animoto for your business is signing up for an account. Animoto has multiple plans that you can choose from. For example, there is a “personal plan” for $8 per month, a “professional plan” for $22 per month and a “business plan” for $34 a month. Check specifics here about what each plan entails. But you can also sign up for a free trial to get started and see if you like the service. Then you can extend or change your plan later. Signing up for the trial just requires a name, email, password and category for your account.
Choose a Style
There are plenty of different video styles for you to choose from on Animoto. So once you’ve created your account and you’re ready to start your first video, you’ll first need to choose what style you’d like to work with. When you go to the video creation page, you’ll see a collection of different options for your video style. You can browse different categories or just look at the most popular options. And if you mouse over each option, you’ll see a preview of what a video in that style can look like.
Add Your Logo
You have the ability to add your company’s logo to the video you create. You just upload the file under the logo tab on the left sidebar. Then you can set your logo to appear at the beginning or the end of your video, or both. And you can also set any animations like fade in, zoom or focus to make it stand out or fit with the overall style of your video.
Upload Pictures and Videos
Then it’s time to upload some photos and/or video clips to make up the visual content of your video. You can upload photos or video clips from your computer or import them from various other sites like Facebook, Instagram or Dropbox. Animoto also has a selection of stock photos and video clips that you can browse to add some extra visuals to your video.
Enter Some Text
You can also add text to various parts of your video. For example, you might choose to include some instructions throughout your video or a call to action for viewers toward the end. To do this, just click the text button on the left sidebar, and you’ll get the option to add a title and subtitle. You can then add those text boxes to different parts of your video, or even add multiple text elements so you can convey different messages throughout the video.
Manage Your Songs
As you’re getting all the visual elements for your video into place, don’t forget about the audio elements. Some of the video styles come with songs pre-loaded onto them. So you can leave those songs in place and then just add your photos and videos to show as the music plays. But you also have the option to change the music or sound by uploading your own file or browsing the selection of music that Animoto has available. When you find a song that fits with your video, just click select to add it. You can replace the existing song or add extra songs if you want to add some extra length to your video.
Preview the Video
Once you’re happy with all of the visual and audio elements of your video, it’s almost time to publish it. But before you do, you need to preview the video and make sure that everything is as it should be. There’s a preview button on the left side of the screen that you can use throughout the editing process to see how all of the elements of your video mesh together. And before you actually publish, you should watch the whole thing at least once to make sure you’re happy with the final product. Then make any necessary changes you might notice before you finish up editing.
Produce and Promote
Once all problems have been addressed, it’s time to actually publish. You can hit the produce button at the top of the screen or within the window of your video preview. Then you’ll be taken to a screen where you can edit your video title, description, video quality and other basic details. Once you’ve filled out all that information, your video should be ready to view. So you can share it with your email list, social media followers, blog readers or any other potential customers you interact with online.