March 8, 2014
We face make-or-buy decisions on a weekly basis as we are in the early stages of our company. While working on our new website, it became evident that we needed an explanatory movie to inform domainers all over the world about the fantastic features Efty has to offer.
Perhaps you’ve seen wonderful films like the Crazy Egg Explainer or the Wufoo Introduction. We were on a restricted video budget since we were already investing all of our hard-earned money on creating the most creative domainer tool to have ever seen the light of day. Following my own motto of ‘if someone else can do it, I can do it too’ (or at least give it a shot and see what happens), I made the decision to try the video thing myself after seeing others have a great time while failing terribly.
I researched numerous explainer videos I enjoy to try to determine the model they frequently employ. The effective videos, in my opinion, are often scripted in the following sequence:
1 You are aware that doing this and that is EXTREMELY IMPORTANT.
2 Doesn’t it stink that this and that are taking up SO MUCH OF YOUR TIME?
3 Do not be alarmed; our fantastic stuff is here.
4 It does tasks a, b, and c as well as some 1, 2, and 3 tasks.
5 Sign up NOW (it’s very simple), and you’ll be well on your way to doing this and that while still having plenty of time to do things you like!
Because I love street art so much, it just so happens that I have some knowledge on how to combine colours, use typography, and other things. I went out and purchased a Wacom drawing tablet, and I immediately began creating some artwork (you can omit the word “art” here, to be honest:P).
I wrote a little script that was about three minutes long in the beginning. Doron changed the dialogue, and we were able to trim it down to around 90 seconds. After that, I began creating a number of little animations that looked like cartoons on paper. This was really our first storyboard, I later discovered.
Okay, let’s start using the tablet now. Although I’m somewhat comfortable with Photoshop, I had only ever used Windows Movie Maker. I quickly searched the web and discovered that Adobe After Effects was the best option. I spent a few hours experimenting with some basic things in AE, and oh my: I was floored. Absolutely excellent thing, this. The options are limitless.
Making a movie is unquestionably different from creating some paper-based drawings or using Photoshop to edit photographs. I’ve probably spent a good portion of the day simply sketching up ideas and getting used to my new drawing tablet and Adobe Illustrator.
But there was undoubtedly some light at the end of the tunnel. I created approximately 25 seconds of video after a week of experimenting with my new tools, which was actually very great. My work will undoubtedly make any experienced artist giggle, but at this point, I was certain that our film would be successful in conveying our fantastic message.
I couldn’t wait to transmit my first video to Doron, the other co-founder of Efty. I knew I was on the right track when he texted me to say that he left a business meeting early to watch it on the toilet around 25 times and would probably be dreaming about it that night.
Initially, there was a photo in there with a text balloon reading “Steaming pile of domains” and pointing to a number of open browser tabs to highlight a huge number of unmanageable domains. The “Steaming pile” allusion cracked us up, in our opinion. However, a quick check on Google revealed that this term most likely would have produced more negative than good references.
In the next week, I proceeded and completed the video. To begin with, we utilized http://www.fromtexttospeech.com/ to add some speech. We used the Voicebunny folks to create our final version. Amazing service, and they were able to provide us with a top-notch voice-over in within two days. ‘Voice actor 40BPNS4’, our man, definitely struck a home run.
I was quite happy to hear our new voice in the video. It was similar to receiving the keys to your much-anticipated new abode.
I’m sure you film professionals out there would have done a far better job than little ol’ me, I repeat. However, mastering such a trade quickly and producing results in a matter of weeks gives me a huge rush.
I adore my work!
Most people would advise you that, as CEO, founder, or whatever title you hold, you should focus on your strengths and hire a fantastic team and partners for the remainder of your company. However, I promise that if you sometimes stay with it, you’ll be able to You’ll be one contented business owner if you invest a lot of time in a venture that you truly like and succeed in.
Visit our site to watch our DIY video in all its magnificence.
Co-Founder of Efty, Lionel Petitiaux