Animoto – Give Your Photo/Video Slideshows Some Punch
The Animoto Slideshow Maker is one of the best assets ANY photographer, videographer or musician can have in their business.
Update August 2009: Animoto have now added the ability to include video clips to your slideshows opening up a whole new world of creativity! Here is my first effort with a few clips thrown in…
Imagine what this could do for your wedding slideshows when you couple video taken from your DSLR (if available) with the normal photographs! You can even control the sounds within your show. Choose either to keep the soundtrack music playing and mute the audio totally (default) or you can activate the video clip’s audio and take the music volume down by half…genius!
Easily and effortlessly produce stunning slideshows to:
- Create TV and Film quality music videos
- Share online
- Email to clients, family and friends
- Download them to your computer
- Export directly to YouTube
- Burn to DVD for clients or just for fun
- Put them on Facebook, MySpace, websites, blogs…anywhere!
To give you an idea of what a “simple” to produce (using the online Animoto slideshow maker) show looks like…
I have used this for my own personal portfolios where I can direct potential clients. I have burned high resolution copies to DVD to send to potential clients. I have sent high resolution DVD’s to wedding couples as part of their package and they are simply blown away by the quality, music and incredible transitions…testimonials and referrals? I think so!
You see, the Animoto software will take your images and create a unique slideshow every time. It will also take any song of your choice (from their growing library of Royalty Free music) and fit it perfectly to the slideshow.
When I first saw this I couldn’t believe how Animoto was able to sort the transitions so they matched perfectly with the beat of the music…amazing!
So what do you do?
Well, it is simple really. You just upload your images (making sure the resolution is good enough for TV but below 5mb for each image…bear in mind that the DVD quality resolution is 864 x 480) to the Animoto Slideshow Maker website, select your piece of music and press “create”! Da-naaa!
The Animoto Slideshow Maker software will then create a unique, one off slideshow for you but that’s not all. If you want to tweak and amend your slideshow, you can select certain images to get a longer viewing, juggle them about, add or remove images and create a revision…or you can simply hit “remix” to make a whole new show.
Don’t worry though, every time you do this, the original and previous version is stored in your account but you get another totally unique slideshow with different transitions.
So how much does the Animoto Slideshow Maker cost?
This is the good bit. You can set up a free account today and start making slideshows right away BUT be warned. You will become addicted and very quickly become frustrated by the limitations of the free account.
With the free account you can only make small 30 second slideshows but you can make as many as you want and share them around, but you cannot download them and you will soon find that you want to download a high resolution version which will cost you a few $’s each time. Or you can pay $5 to upgrade it to DVD quality.
If you want to make a full length video, it costs just $3 for each video and you can download the high resolution versions of these as well as ordering DVD’s etc.
However! I strongly suggest you do what I did straight away, sign up for the one year all access pass for a measly $30, especially if you think you will make more than 10 videos in a year!
With the all access pass, you can make as many short andfull length videos (up to 10 minutes long) as you wish and download them all, plus you can still upgrade them to DVD quality which costs just $5.
This is a real no brainer if you want to impress your friends or more importantly, your clients.
If you are a wedding, portrait, property, commercial or whatever photographer, think about it. Once you have your all access pass, you can make a full length, DVD quality video for your clients for just $5…I charge more than 10 times that for a DVD wedding slideshow that is incorporated into my packages.
Wedding Photography Example: You are shooting a wedding and it is time for the meal. When the guests are eating you could be selecting your best images from the day so far, using a laptop to upload them to the Animoto website and within minutes, you have a high resolution, stunning slideshow to show people just before the speeches…very cool!
The Animoto Slideshow Maker software produces totally unique and stunning slideshows that people just haven’t seen yet so to get your business out there in a unique position, you should start making these now and putting them everywhere…what a great promo tool!
- Video projections
- Class presentations
- and other events
Lastly, “Animoto for Business”
When you sign up for a business account, you get even more features. This is great if you are truly serious about your photography business and you want to make an impression. A few of these features are:
- More subtle Animoto-branding within videos
- 225+ commercially licensed songs with more being added
- A Call-to-Action button that lets you link a viewer to your site at the end of the video (very handy, especially if you are selling products or your own services)!
- A pace-setting control feature that lets you slow-down/speed-up videos
- UNLIMITED amount of DVD-Quality downloads
Get on board with the Animoto Slideshow Maker and start having fun!
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