As we move into 2019, content marketing will continue to be king. However, what makes a good content strategy is changing. In the past, an effective content marketer was a good writer. But no more! Increasingly, you have to get your head round all kinds of different media. Today we’ll look at some video marketing tools to help you along the way.
What are Video Marketing Tools?
Video marketing tools are essentially platforms to help non-specialists reap the benefits of video marketing. For most small businesses, it doesn’t make much sense to hire someone who went to film school just to make promo videos.
So a good video marketing tool should lower the barriers to entry. As such, you’d expect a combination of value and ease of use. Or at the very least, you’d expect better value and ease of use than a studio-grade editing environment.
But are all video marketing tools created equal? Of course not. Like any product, different video platforms are aimed at different niches. As such, the best option will vary greatly for different users and applications.
In today’s article we’ll take a look at some options for different uses. For now, here’s the executive overview;
|Software||Starting From||Best Thing About It||Biggest Problem|
|Wideo||$19 per month.||Extensive range of templates.||Only for animations.|
|Powtoon||$16 per month.||Great for info-videos.||Limited live-action functions.|
|WeVideo||$4.99 per month.||Very cheap.||Cheapest plan only offers 720p.|
|Vyond||$39 per month.||Relatively Expensive.||Automatic lip-sync.|
|Renderforest||Free.||Free.||Expensive to remove watermarks.|
|Common Craft||$59 per year.||Great for info-videos.||Not suitable for other applications|
You’ll notice some big gaps in both functionality and pricing. The thing to do now is look at each in a little more detail.
We’ll kick things off by looking at Wideo, which is available from $19 per month. The folks behind Wideo claim that you can have a professional quality animated video in as little as 5 minutes. While this is slightly optimistic, it’s not far off the truth.
Wideo is based around a series of templates aimed at specific purposes. These combine nicely with a range of assets, such as avatars, logos and backgrounds. These can all be combined in a very clean and simple drag and drop interface.
These can then be downloaded either as an mp4 or shared directly to your social media. It’d be nice to see options for more formats or cloud hosting. However, if you just want professional looking animations for your social strategy, look no further.
Starting from $16 per month, Powtoon looks more like a presentation platform at first glance. Indeed, it’s interface is based mainly around pre-animated ‘slides’. As such, it’s more suited for infomercials than sprite or character based animations.
Appropriately, it’s also very easy to add voiceovers and stock music. This makes it a perfect solution if you want to make informative video content for your audience.
There’s also some support for live-action video. However, this is limited to adding text overlays to stock footage. As such, if you’re looking for full scale video editing, you’ll need to look elsewhere.
Of today’s video marketing tools, WeVideo is the closest to a traditional editing suite. Starting from as little as $4.99 per month, it’s a cloud based video editor. There are a range of different plans on offer, with more in depth features. This means you can get your feet wet, and scale your plan as you need.
The fact that WeVideo is cloud based is significant. This makes it easy to shoot high quality original video on your phone, and then edit it when you get to your desk.
As a more traditional editing suite, the learning curve is slightly higher than some of the other platforms in today’s comparison. However, at the higher price points you also get access to a massive range of stock video and audio.
Starting at $39 per month, Vyond is the most expensive of today’s video marketing tools. It’s probably best described as an advanced animation suite. That’s advanced in terms of features though. Its ease of use is still incredibly high. It’s still pretty much a case of drag and drop.
Of these advanced features, the one which had me most impressed was the automatic lip-syncing. When you record a voice over, the built-in avatars lips will move in sync. This creates a very impressive effect for explainer videos.
I also really liked the level of customisation on offer. For example, you can change the avatar’s appearance with a range of different outfits and hairstyles.
Renderforest is the only one of today’s video marketing tools which offers a free version. It’s another cloud based platform. One standout feature is access to a library of commercial music. This will give your video content a professional edge.
While Rendeforest offers both animated and live-action templates, it’s its 3D cartoons which make it stand out from the pack. Obviously, whether these are appropriate for your audience will vary. However, they create a high-production value feel without the cost.
Renderforest is also unique among today’s platforms in that it comes with a landing page creator too. This integrates directly with its video content, which opens the door to use multimedia content in a host of new marketing contexts.
Starting at $59 annually, Common Craft is aimed specifically at creating infomercials and explainer videos. They’ve decided to go down the route of doing one thing and doing it well. If that’s what you’re looking for, it’s the perfect tool. If not, you may want to look elsewhere.
Common Craft comes stocked with thousands of original visual elements to use in your explainers. It also offers support for vector formats such as .EPS and .AI, which makes branding your video content with your logo breeze.
A subscription also gets you access to pre-made animations on a range of topics. All you need to do is add your own branding and voice over and you’re ready to go.
Video Marketing Tools; Final Thoughts
Picking favourites is always the difficult part of these comparisons. Today, at least there’s the luxury of dividing them into animation and live-action tools. For an animator, I’d probably plump for Vyond, while for a general video editor WeVideo is hard to look past. For more specific uses, the other video marketing tools are all still great options too.
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