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Posts Tagged ‘sparkol videoscribe’

The value of REAL networking in your freelancer community.

June 28, 2014 5 comments

There’s an old business saying along the lines of “Never annoy anyone on your way to the top, because you may need their help when you are on the way down“. Basically, I take that to mean try and treat everyone right, and they will treat you right when you need them, (even if you are still on the way up).

Earlier this week I got a call from a very influential/well-known UK Institute. They had a problem. They had contacted me because I have 2 specific skills – #Articulate #Storyline and #Sparkol #Videoscribe – two products that are essential for their project rollout.

They need nearly 100 short, 10/12-slide, 10-minute courses produced – originally the deadline was sometime early in 2015, it is now late August 2014. It is almost the end-June now. There will be around 30-40 standalone Videoscribes to produce after that.

I went to see them, to see what I could do to help, if anything. To cut a long story short, after the meeting I placed a call to a Storyline colleague, to see if he could help, because there is no way I can do this on my own. He told me that he had diversified from Storyline, and had entered the Video Marketing world too using a new product – had I heard of a product called “Sparkol Videoscribe”?

He also knows of another resource who can help us with these skills. Sometimes – the planets just align perfectly.

In the meeting, both the client and I accepted the project dates were bordering on insanity, however, after a couple of hours, some laying down of the production “rules”, and some networking, this project has become completely realistic. I’m not saying it will be easy, but 1 person has become 3, and the light at the end of the tunnel is certainly brighter than it was. In contacting this colleague, and giving some work AWAY, a project is now more likely to happen, with me at the middle, managing it, and client panic (hopefully) turning to client delight and future repeat business.

I believe that effective Freelancer networks are ESSENTIAL, especially in my own eLearning business world . There are so many products and tools, no-one can be effective in them all. Work with REAL people, contact REAL people, and do not just be “Social Media Friends”. Be REAL friends and REAL colleagues. I am totally sick and tired of social media contacts to “Like” and “Friend” and so on – where they just ask, but offer no explanation WHY they want me to like, friend, buddy, connect and generally add to my Inbox.

That way, a massive piece of business, crazy to look at on paper MIGHT just become a workable reality with one phonecall. Freelancers often on PC/mobile tools to be effective, but do not, ever forget the value of ongoing contacts, and the occasional social call just in case you need their help.

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It does not have to be deadly dull…

June 16, 2014 2 comments

I am having a lot of fun creating eLearning at the moment…yes…fun.

Just because eLearning is deadly serious that does not mean that it has to be deadly dull.

I’m developing a course on corporate Fraud – it has loads of little animations built to represent cheating partners and annoyed stationery-stealing staff, built using PowToon and Sparkol Videoscribe.

 

You see – “animation” does not necessarily mean “funny”, or “disrespectful”.

All it means is that – animated.

Google “define animated” and the first entry is:

full of life or excitement; lively

Isn’t that what we are all trying to do in (most) eLearning? 

I am developing one course on the Hospitality Industry. I just use PowToon to bring in 3 images of what different grades of hotel look like, but because they come in with a “Pop” effect, (like a PowerPoint “Grow” but with a pronounced bounce), on a brightly coloured template, they do not LOOK like PowerPoint.

 

They just provide a breather, a change of tempo for a few seconds, and the visuals (instead of text), provide an increased change of learning. It’s like a change of tempo in a musical piece, or the “middle 8” of some jazz – the same, but different. I’m still using the Corporate Articulate Storyline template, so it’s all OK from a brand perspective, but having a consistent brand/style does NOT mean everything has to ALWAYS look the same.

 

Humour is all around us. I have just seen a Driving School car labelled with their logo and brand “AcciDON’T”. I think that’s funny!

 

Sainsburys supermarket in the UK are selling a “Basics” version of their twin garlic baguettes – on the pack it says “Made with margarine not butter – but it still takes your breath away”. I think that’s brilliant!

 

So be brave, suggest humour, or even better, just create some, and place it into your courses. Certainly my clients seem to LOVE it, and I suspect, (when used appropriately), yours will too.

 

Have a fun time!

Great when you find that “right” solution

June 2, 2014 Leave a comment

The good people at Sparkol made a great blog post about me today (woohoo!).

Whilst it’s always nice to see your name, and what you do in print, the really great part is knowing that the client loved what I did, right from the start.

The concept was proposed, (using Videoscribe scribes in almost every slide within an Articulate Storyline framework), and then the more we did, the more it “worked”.

Sometimes you just need to trust your instinct, however, your instinct has to be based on some reasonable thought processes. In this instance, the subject – creativity – was clearly a “visual” subject, so it made sense to suggest using a highly visual medium.

Building short modules, and then also offering them as a consolidated module allowed my client the maximum options for selling the final product, and they all share the same visual style.

“Animation” and “cartoons” are not dirty words in corporate eLearning, they do not have to be funny, and used well you can make it a hugely effective addition to your eLearning arsenal.

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