ProShow Web | A Fresh Look
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Slideshows are a huge part of my photography business, there is no doubt about it. Up until recently, I have been a huge advocate of Animoto and for good reason— they have been at the forefront of innovation. What made Animoto so attractive to me was its ease of use, but today, that ease of use and over-dumb-ification has created some gaps in my offerings to clients. I need more. Many photographers out there agree. Simplicity and ease-of-use are very important, but we also need control and the ability to customize.
Now, I don’t want to sit here and cast stones at Animoto. Our clients love our slideshows. Previously, the market leader was Photodex’s ProShow Producer. Whoa, talk about complicated. It was too much product. I am a photographer, not a slideshow ninja master. I wanted fast and easy. Animoto was the answer. And over the last 4 years, we have built hundreds of slideshows for our clients.
‘Innovate or Die’ is the mantra at Salvatore Cincotta Photography, our photography studio. We have to continue to offer our clients superior products and services and out-maneuver our competitors or risk losing market share and becoming irrelevant. This is the risk for all businesses today.
Recently, I took a fresh look at Photodex’s ProShow Web and I think you are going to like what I found.
1. PC/MAC compatible. For the longest time, they only ran on a PC. Yeah, welcome to 2015. Creatives love their Macs. As an ex-Microsoft employee who doesn’t own a single PC today, I can attest to this first-hand. Their ProShow Web is web-based and platform agnostic (it runs via web browser).
2. Branding. Finally a company that gets the importance of branding. I am not talking about adding your logo— that’s 101 crap. I am talking about a splash screen and watermark. With ProShow Web you have your logo as the splash screen vs some random pictures from the slideshow showing when your slideshow is embedded on your website. Don’t underestimate this— branding is key for everything we do. You also have the ability to have a watermark displayed across the bottom corner of the image the entire time. Again, this is huge from a branding perspective. Are you creating a slideshow for a vendor that will play over and over again in their sales room? Guess what? Very few people are going to catch the intro of the video to see your logo. That’s where the watermark is a huge branding opportunity for you.
Branded splash screen.
Watermark on entire show.
3. Price. ProShow Web is legitimately half the price of their competitors. But wait, it gets better. Whatever price you sign up with, Proshow Web lets you renew at that same price every time your year subscription is up. Let’s say they are running a sale when you first sign up (see below)— not only do you get the sale price initially, but when your year is up, while other companies raise your price to current pricing, Photodex allows you to keep the original price point every time you renew. How’s that for a deal?
4. Support for video. They support up to 30-second video clips making it easier than ever to create fusion pieces for your clients.
5. Image timing. This is a HUGE feature in my book. With automated slideshows, you are dealing with the over-dumb-ification of it. You upload your images and the program controls the beat and timing of your images. It’s a catch-22. Well, no more. ProShow Web gives you the best of both worlds. Upload your images and it will render your slideshow. However, got that one killer image you want on the screen a few seconds longer? No problem. Just click on the timing box and change the duration to whatever you wish. To me, this is a must-have feature. I didn’t work my ass off at an event to have one of my killer shots on the screen for a half second because some computer decided to just treat all images the same.
Customizing the timing of an image is as simple as adjusting the time in the text box. (see below)
6. Automated Customization. I just made that term up, but it makes so much sense. Proshow Web is perfect for those of you wanting simplicity. Just remember, with simplicity comes repetitiveness and your slideshows all start looking the same. We need the ability to tweak the slideshow. This customization can be as subtle or as complex as you’d like. You can alter the timing and the transition types with a few clicks and leave all the heavy lifting to the ProShow Web engine.
These are just some of the features that jumped out at me. At a minimum, give their free trial a shot and see if you agree with my assesment.
If you are not using slideshows today, I have no idea what you are waiting for. It’s a huge value-add for your clients. If you are using slideshows but feel like you need a little extra control, branding and overall ‘umph,’ check out Photodex’s ProShow Web. I promise you will not be disappointed.
In fact, the good people over at Photodex have offered up a 15% discount code – SAL15 – if you use it by July 15th. Best of all, you will get the same price when you renew. What could be better than that? http://web.photodex.com/sal