By Dalene Heck and Catherine Reed
Video is a powerful marketing tool, especially on social media. When it comes to branded content, 72 percent of consumers prefer video over text. Plus, unlike still images, you can convey tons of information in a short, informative social video clip.
Many travel companies assume that creating an engaging and intriguing video costs a pretty penny. While this can be true – particularly if you opt to hire a professional video crew and editor – it doesn’t have to be. There are plenty of online platforms that can help you produce stunning and easy videos for social media. Plus, they are quick and easy to use, and no prior video creation experience is required.
Here’s a look at some of the amazing online platforms for making social videos.
With Adobe Spark, you can tell your company’s or location’s story with ease. By heading to the web or smartphone app, you can create, customize, and share your videos.
The included tools make the whole process simple. You can start with a beautiful template to expedite the process or start from scratch. With the editing tool suite, you can refine and hone the picture, splice together several clips, add a text overlay, and more. There are also built-in features for recording narration and some stock clip art available.
Getting started with Adobe Spark doesn’t cost a dime. However, if you only use the free version, there is Adobe branding imprinted on the videos. If you want the branding removed, plus have access to additional features, plans start at $9.99 USD per month.
When it comes to social videos, Animoto is a popular platform, and for good reason. (Case in point: We use Animoto in-house at HMI!) You can upload clips and photos, add text, edit the image quality, and choose some music to make your video seem even more professional. Animoto has more than 2,000 licensed songs available, as well as plenty of stock photos and videos, so anything you want from their library is fair game.
The platform is entirely cloud-based, allowing you to access it from nearly any device without a massive software download. Thanks to the drag-and-drop interface, even video production beginners won’t have any trouble getting started. Plus, if you head to the “marketing videos” category, you’ll find options that were hand-crafted for companies. You’ll find a selection of attractive templates that are grouped based on your goal. However, you can also start from scratch if you’d prefer. You may find some of the editing features limiting (I know I do, as I also often use Final Cut Pro X which is much more difficult to use, but much more powerful), but for simple social videos, it surely does the trick.
Animoto offers a free trial, so you can check it out without having to pay. After that, the price is pretty reasonable, starting as low as $5 USD per month, which is certainly well below what outsourcing to professionals would cost you.
If you want to add some animation to your videos (and maybe a hint of whimsy), then Animaker has your back. It’s entirely web-based, so you don’t have to worry about a software download, and getting started is a breeze. The interface is drag-and-drop, one of the most user-friendly approached out there. Plus, there’s a massive library of characters, images, and audio.
Animaker uses the freemium model, so you can get started without having to pay. If you want access to a more extensive library or additional features, the pricing is competitive, starting at just $12 USD per month.
While the idea of using animation for a travel-oriented video might not seem intuitive, the use of characters can be handy for certain informational pieces. You could create “dos and don’ts” clips about being a guest at a property, for example, all without having to hire actors or rope a staff member into being the star.
Do you want to create a beautiful video in just minutes? If so, Biteable has your back. You can use your own video and photos, choose from hundreds of free clips and images, or use a combination approach. The professionally designed templates allow you to get started fast. Plus, there are tools for adding text and sound, including some available music.
Up to five projects a month are free and you can publish them to Facebook or Twitter and embed to your blog or website. The premium plan (which allows you to remove the Biteable branding and adds the ability to add your own video and images) is competitively priced, beginning at $15 USD a month.
If you are posting videos on Instagram, then you shouldn’t ignore Hyperlapse. It’s Instagram’s own platform for time-lapse video creation, giving you the ability to speed up your footage or record in real-time.
Imagine being able to share a breathtaking sunset from your property in just 30 to 60 seconds instead of the up to five minutes it may take. You can capture the first snowfall of the year and showcase your location as a true winter wonderland, letting anyone experience it in just minutes, or take them on a speedy tour of a landmark.
Hyperlapse can help smooth footage that comes out a bit shaky, and you can post straight to Instagram and Facebook. Plus, it’s completely free, meaning anyone can afford to give it a try.
The learning-curve for Moovly is a bit steeper than some other platforms. But that’s because you get a lot of functionality. Along with graphics and icons you can use, you also have the ability to upload your own narration. You also gain access to a substantial selection of free assets but can upload your own media if you want to rely more on a personal library or combine your footage with some of their options.
Once your social video is ready, you can send it straight to platforms like Facebook and YouTube. You can also give the trial version a try before you commit, allowing you to explore how Moovly works and then decide if it’s right for you. If you decide to move forward, Moovly costs as little as $24.92 USD per month.
Adobe Premiere Rush
If you want to elevate your capabilities, Adobe Premiere Rush is almost as capable as Adobe Premiere Pro. However, instead of having to download software, Adobe Premiere Rush is entirely cloud-based and accessible through a smartphone app.
While this option has a steeper learning curve, Adobe offers an onboarding process to familiarize you with the app. You’ll use stock footage to work your way through a sample project, allowing you to get some hands-on time with clear step-by-step guidance. After that, you can move forward with confidence, creating social videos for platforms like YouTube, Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Snapchat, and Vimeo and posting directly through the app.
Adobe Premiere Rush is also accessible through the computer if you’d rather use a desktop or laptop instead. There is a free starter plan available. After that, the pricing is also fairly competitive, coming in at $9.99 per month. However, if you already subscribe to the Creative Cloud All Apps plan, you’ll be happy to know that Adobe Premiere Rush is included in that package.
Ultimately, all of the social video online platforms above are worth exploring. They each bring something slightly different to the table, so take a look and choose the one (or ones) that work best for you.
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