If you create training content, you know that video is one of the mostpopular formatsfor modern learning.
As a rich sensory medium that stimulates the auditory and visual senses, video is a dynamic and accessible tool to assist in the learning process.
Untilvirtual realitybecomes an affordable solution, video is one of the best formats for self-paced learning on the internet.
Isso é especialmente verdadeiro quando você ensina os clientes a usar um produto de software.
Software training... That's what I spend most of my days thinking about. I am currently part of a team that creates training content and videos onAtlassian University.We train customers how to use software products likeSim,Confluence, eTrello.
In our research, we found that many of our customers prefer to find'as'information on YouTube, so we're focusing more on scaling our video content. and we are usingCamtasiaas our main tool for video editing and production.
TBH, my favorite video editing tool isPremiere Pro. It is professional, robust and flexible. In Premiere, you can create any customization you want.
But let's be real, Adobe's tools aren't made for beginners. They don't have the most intuitive interface and require a significant ramp to learn.
That's why Camtasia is the best tool to create software training videos for your clients.The tool offers a simple interface that allows you to create professional-grade videos without all the extra features. A few more reasons why it's great:
- ✅Integrated screen recorder, perfect for creating software training
- ✅super easy to use, no need to be an expert video editor
- ✅Drag and drop animations, making your editing more efficient
- ✅Unique cursor effects, for cleaner and more accessible videos
If your customer education team is looking for a new tool to create training videos, Camtasia is definitely worth exploring. This will help reduce your maintenance and the amount of time to create new training content.
Before we get into the tips, let's look at an example.The training video below was created using Camtasia. Watch the 2-minute video to get an idea of the training result that we will discuss in the tips.
Well, let's go to the tips.Note that the below isnoa tutorial on getting started with Camtasia for the first time.I assume you already know the basics of the tool. The tips below are to help you improve your product training videos.
1. Record your screen using Camtasiabuilt-in tool
The built-in screen recorder is one of the best features of Camtasia. It allows youa) record your screen, eB) edit your final videos,all in one tool. More efficiency!
Screen recorder is easy to use. If you're on a Mac, a recording icon will be added to the right side of the top toolbar. It looks like this:
To start recording, select the icon and then select'Start recording.'You can stop recording by selecting the same toolbar icon. Once recording is stopped, the newly recorded clip will automatically be added to your media library.
2. Before recording, zoom your browser to 125%
Okay, this tip isn't really about Camtasia itself. But thatorsignificantly improve your final edit.
A typical issue with training videos is that the recorded product UI is so small that it is difficult for learners to read and understand.
You can resolve this byzooming to at least 125% in your browserbeforeyou click start recording your screen. Your goal with product training videos is to minimize the amount of wasted screen real estate. Zooming in before recording helps students have an optimal experience and better understand your product.
3. Use Cursor Smoothing effect
When recording your screen to show product features, sometimes the cursor may appear to be moving erratically.Your mouse can jump back and forth too quickly, which can distract and overwhelm your viewers.
Camtasia solves this with its “Cursor Smoothing” effect.This effect magically removes all erratic cursor movements and instead creates clean, smooth cursor movements.. Cursor Smoothing is one of my favorite features for improving product training videos.
To add this effect, go to the side panel and select'Cursor Effects.'then drag'Cursor smoothing'at the top of the desired clip in the timeline.
4. Add cursor click sounds
This may sound trivial, but adding “click sounds” makes your training video clearer and more understandable.These sounds provide an auditory cue to students about when and where they should click.
Fortunately, Camtasia has a built-in feature for this, so you don't have to add click sounds yourself.
In the side panel, select'Cursor Effects.'Then select theLeft click on the iconat the top of the screen. Drag'As'at the top of the desired clip in the timeline. This will add an authentic “click” sound to any place you clicked in the screen recording.
I normally turn the volume down to around 65%. The default 100% seems like overkill.
5. Increase cursor size for easier viewing
When you record your screen, the default cursor size is usually small and can be hard to follow.
Camtasia allows you to increase the cursor size up to 2000%.With the latest version of Camtasia 2022, a vector is used in place of the cursor. This allows you to increase the cursor size without any pixelation.
To increase the cursor size after recording the screen, select the clip in the timeline. Then navigate to the top right corner of the screen and select the cursor icon. Adjust the scale to your preferred size.
Note: If you are running an older version of Camtasia, I suggest making the maximum cursor size 175%. Any size larger than that and you'll see heavy pixelation at the cursor. Upgrading to Camtasia 2022 resolves this issue.
6. Clips “stitched together” for more seamless videos
You will likely need to split a screenshot clip to align with the voiceover. Camtasia offers the option to “join selected media”, which makes the cursor movement seamless even if the clip is cut.
7. Freeze and extend your video clips
In most video edits, your audio narration doesn't match your screen recording perfectly. This means that you will need to split your screen recording to best suit the audio instructions.
A resource to help you with this isfreeze and extend your clips. This feature allows you to pause a clip at any specific point and extend that still frame as long as you want on the timeline.
To enable the freeze and extend feature,select the clip, hold 'Option' on the keyboard and drag the end of the clip to your preferred duration.
8. Use simple annotations to draw attention to specific features
Camtasia has a bunch of built-in annotations.Be careful with them as it's easy to overdo it, which can make your video more confusing.
My note taking advice iskeep it simpleestay consistent. Pick the one or two annotations that work best for your needs and keep them consistent across all your videos. In the example video above, you can see that all annotations are the same style and color. Simple and consistent.
You can access notes in your sidebar by selecting'Notes'then choosing from the options library. My favorite annotations are the box and highlight features.
9. Group clips for easier editing
Groups are a great way to keep your video project organized.By grouping clips, it will be easier to add zooms, transitions or other effects to multiple clips at once.
To create a group, select multiple clips in the timeline and right-click. Then select 'Group.'
This adds all selected clips into a single bundle (in Premiere Pro they are called a 'nested sequence'). Double click on the group and you can edit any of the clips nested within the group.
10. Use a simple 'Fade' for most transitions
Like annotations, transitions can also make your videos confusing and overwhelming if not selected carefully. And to be honest, most of Camtasia's built-in transitions are a bit cheesy and outdated.
I suggest you keep your transitions simple and use 'Fade' on almost everything.This will give your video a cleaner, more professional look and be more efficient to create.
To add transitions, go to the sidebar and select'Transitions.'Then select your transition (Fade!) and drag it over the desired clip in the timeline. Keep in mind that you can also add transitions to groups if you've nested multiple clips.
11. Use custom animations to extend product UI
Zooming in on important features is a must for software training videos. Keep in mind that your audience is likely watching these videos on a small screen. If you want to draw attention to a specific button, you will likely need to zoom in to help your students better see and understand it.
There are a few ways to zoom in with Camtasia, but I foundthe most effective way is to add a “custom animation” to your clip.
To add a zoom, select'Animations'in the left panel. then drag'Custom'above the desired clip or group in the timeline. This will add an arrow icon to the top of your clip, which looks like this:
Select this arrow. The white circles on the arrow represent the start and end of your animation. To add a zoom, select the final circle so it is highlighted in red. Then use the panel in the upper right corner to adjust the scale and X/Y position.
Play the video in the timeline to make sure the zoom is good. This process of adding a 'custom animation' takes some practice, but you'll get the hang of it after a few tries. Especially if you created more complex animations in Premiere Pro or After Effects.
My pro tip is to only use the zoom feature when absolutely necessary.You don't need to zoom in on each button. Prioritize the most important information for your students to know and expand on that.
12. Create a template to speed up future videos
When you edit a video from scratch, it's a lot of work. You need to think about branding, title cards, intro/closing bumpers, transitions, colors.
My advice is to create a great video from scratch so that you can use that file as a template for future videos.Put the extra work up front to ensure all brand-level visuals are sharp and your intro/end bumpers are polished.
Once you have a solid video template, share the file with your teammates so that everyone can create similarly styled training videos.
I hope you found these tips invaluable for creating more effective training videos. If you are curious to know more,explore more Camtasia tutorials hereand see what other creative solutions you come up with.
If you find any useful resources that I missed here, please share them in a comment. I would love to learn from you.
Happy creating. 🎉