After receiving graduate degrees in both Instructional Design and Project Management, Michelle Schoen has developed E-learning and software demos for Fortune 500 companies such as Delta, IBM, AT&T and Kimberly Clark. She is a frequent speaker at many live and online Learning and Development events and is currently serving on Chief Learning Officer magazine’s prestigious 2013 Business Intelligence Board.
Michelle specializes in Camtasia Studio and PowerPoint training and consulting as well as in coaching her clients to create compelling online videos and demos.
In this conversation, Michelle discusses using PowerPoint to create video demos.
Geetesh: Can you tell us why you choose PowerPoint as a video creation tool over dedicated video programs?
Michelle:The idea of creating video at all is very intimidating to a lot of people. I believe that it is important to ease people into video by starting with tools they probably already own and with which they are familiar. Because Microsoft products are so popular and most corporations own them it just seemed natural to start with PowerPoint. In addition, each new version of PowerPoint, since 2007, has made it easier and easier to export in a video format that can be either imported into video editing programs or be uploaded directly to a website.
I have also been training audiences for years on a tool called Camtasia Studio and they have a plugin, that works from within PowerPoint. It allows anyone to record PowerPoint Presentations as MP4 videos while including web camera video and professional quality audio. The two tools work fabulously together for both marketing videos, software demos and elearning.
Geetesh: You do use plenty of animation in your PowerPoint videos — can you share a few thoughts?
Michelle: Sure. About a decade ago, when I was in Instructional Design at IBM we used to have to hire animators, graphic artists and programmers to put together any type of animation in our videos. These days I’m a one personal factory cranking out highly animated videos that look like they were done in something like Adobe After Effects and it amazes me what I can create.
Lately, I have been cutting some corners and purchasing low cost pre-animated templates from a variety of sources around the Internet and using them to create my videos for clients. I also customize pieces of these templates and put them into Camtasia for many of my training courses. These templates are filled with complex animations that I wouldn’t have the time or initiative to make on my own and my clients love them. In fact, I have recently delivered a webinar on how to do these, what I call, PowerPoint Hacks and you are welcome to watch it on YouTube to learn some of my tricks and where I get the templates I use.