Everything You Need to Know About Mobile Video Recording

Your mobile device is capable of so many things, sometimes it’s hard to keep track of the features that mobile apps offer. You can surf the web, check your bank statement, or place an order for take-out right from your fingertips. So let’s say you want to record a video of your mobile device in order to create a tutorial or provide clear instructions for a friend or a co-worker. Thanks to some tips and tricks from TechSmith, mobile video recording has never been easier. Let’s take a look!

The Basics

Before hitting the record button, it’s important to consider a few key factors that can have a lasting effect on the quality of your video.

Audio

Built in microphones on mobile devices are very limited. If you can, try and get as close as possible to the source you are shooting. And make sure to listen for noises around you as well. Make sure there are no cars driving by or buzzing from lights – anything that can interfere with the audio signal.

Lighting

For the most part, cameras on mobile devices work better with as much light as possible. So if you can, avoid dark areas. And also, try to avoid getting the sun, bright lights, or windows pointing directly into the shot. This can dramatically over or underexpose your subject.

Shot Composition

On mobile devices, zooming is very limited. So if you can, physically move the camera forward, back or side to side, to fill up your frame. And try to stabilize the shot best you can. No one likes shaky footage. A good tip is too lean up against something. If you have a tripod or flat surface nearby, that will work great as well.

Apps

Here at TechSmith, here are a few apps that are used for shooting and sharing video:

For more visual demonstration, watch the video below!

Recording a Mobile Device Using a Camera

“Blasphemy!” cried the townspeople as they descended on TechSmith headquarters, pitchforks in hand. “Why would you use a camera to record a mobile device at a screen recording company!?”

Well, consider this method a tool in a toolbox. It can be jarring for viewers to cut from a “real world” camera video with actors right into a screen video. Using this technique eases the transition from your live video to your screen recording. Or Perhaps you’re using an accessory like a new tablet pen that you’d like to review? Maybe your fingernails are on fleek and you want to show off that fresh new manicure. Whatever the case, sometimes you gotta do what you gotta do, and we here at TechSmith have got your back with some tips on how to make your mobile device look good through a lens. Check out the video below as it takes you through the following tips:

  • Use a solid surface to place your mobile device on
  • Shooting directly down will capture everything on your screen
  • Avoid pointing lights directly at the device to prevent a glare
  • Take note of the focus – try using manual focus and exposure so your camera doesn’t adjust in the middle of the video

Get Mobile Video Files Off Your Device

So you’ve recorded your mobile device, but you want to bring it onto your desktop for editing, saving, or sharing. Here are some tips on the different options available for getting your video off your mobile device and onto your computer:

The simplest option is plugging your phone into you computer with your USB charger. Or if you have an android device, take out your memory card and use a card reader that is hooked up to your computer. Once connected, you can click and drag your video files right into any folder you desire.

But, let’s say you don’t have a card reader or USB cord available. The next solution is wireless or “cloud” sharing options.

But what is the cloud exactly? The cloud, or cloud computing, basically means software that is operated by internet enabled devices. Instead of storing your files on your mobile device or computer, the files are stored on a server somewhere out there in the world. So for these options to work, you will need to have an active internet connection. Here are a few options:

  • Dropbox works on all devices and you are given 2GBs for free to get started with options to upgrade if needed. Dropbox is available for all major mobile offerings.
  • Google Drive gives you 15GB for free to get started and it is compatible on all mobile devices as well
  • Apple’s iCloud offers 5GB of storage for free to get started and works basically the same as the other two. And believe it or not, iCloud is available for Windows users too.
  • Email services put a cap on file size, usually around 25MB per email, so this option can be limited, but still works if you are in a bind.

If you don’t have a cord or you don’t want to send your videos through the cloud because of privacy reasons, another option would be a product that we offer here at TechSmith, which is called TechSmith Fuse. It is a free companion app for a smartphone or tablet that works together with Snagit.

The way it works is that it connects your mobile device to your desktop computer through a WiFi connection. So as long as your devices are on the same WiFi signal, all you need to do is connect your device via a QR code and BAM! Now you can wirelessly send media safely over the network. No cloud storage involved. The app makes it easy to access video on your computer that you’ve captured on your device. You can download it in either the App Store or the Google Play Store.

How to Go From Smartphone Video to Animated GIF

Now that you have your mobile video recording off your device and onto your desktop, you now have the option to turn that video into a GIF! In June of 1987, the animated GIF was born. While the file format is just slightly older than the majority of millennials, it is widely used by people of all ages. The use of the GIF has peaked in popularity in recent years…the reason? Brands are seeking better social-media engagement.

Culture is better communicated and conveyed through visual media like video, which evokes emotion in audiences, and is more effective than static images or text alone. The GIF is a quick, digestible, auto-playing snippet of video, whose beauty is in its simplicity.

movie-clip-american-beauty-plastic-bag-swirling-in-wind

Source: https://giphy.com/gifs/FWNJ8Hdsk3YzK

Creating a GIF is easier than you think. There are several options for tools that will help you make one easily from existing images or videos, either saved locally on your computer, in the cloud, on a flash drive, or from the internet.

Below, you’ll learn how to create a GIF from video you’ve captured on your Smartphone or tablet in four easy steps using TechSmith’s Snagit + mobile app Fuse.

If you would like to follow along with the steps outlined and don’t yet have Snagit installed on your computer, you can download a fully-functioning free trial here.

Let’s get started!

Step 1: Record/Select the video

Open TechSmith Fuse on your device, and either record a new video by choosing Video, or select an existing video to use by choosing Library > Gallery.

If you are creating a new video, be mindful of whether you prefer portrait or landscape orientation. It may also be a good idea to review the footage to make sure you’re satisfied with your brief video before moving on.

techsmith-fuse-interface-library-and-new-video-options

Step 2: Send the video to Snagit

Now that you’ve selected the video you’d like to use from within Fuse, you’ll want to open Snagit on your desktop and select the Connect Mobile Device option.

snagit-interface-showing-connect-mobile-device-option

A QR Code will pop up. Select Share from within the Fuse app and then scan the code using the box that appears on your device’s screen. The media will be sent into the Snagit editor.

techsmith-fuse-interface-showing-share-option-and-qr-code-used-to-connect

*Sidenote: This works for still images too! You won’t use the still images to create GIFs, but you you can use them to make memes! Sending your still images into Snagit is also a good way to gain quick access to the picture you took of a trade show booth that caught your attention, or the whiteboard full of notes that you captured with your phone that needs to be shared with your team.

Step 3: Select the part of the video you’d like to convert

From within Snagit, you can play back the video. You now have two options.

You can remove the unwanted sections of your video, and then click to create the GIF with all of the remaining content.

Your other option would be to select the portion of the video you’d like to convert and then click the GIF button.

The first option is found to be easier, but it’s really a matter of your personal preference.

snagit-interface-showing-how-to-select-portion-of-video-to-trim-or-use-for-gif

Step 4: Celebrate and share your glorious achievement!

Now that you have successfully created your GIF, get sharing! Post it publicly to your company website, distribute it via email, or share it on social media.

Whether you’ve created the GIF to illustrate steps in a process, provide mini-demos, or maybe just to impress your friends, the use case possibilities are endless. Let your creative juices flow!

slot-machine-15-iloveimg-compressed

Creating a GIF is easy! If you’d like to view a quick recap, check out this video tutorial.

Are you already creating GIF’s from your mobile video content? I’d love to hear how, and what you’re using them for. Share your GIF, and/or your thoughts, in the comments below!

Editor’s Note: This post was originally published in October 2016 and has been updated for accuracy and comprehensiveness.

The post Everything You Need to Know About Mobile Video Recording appeared first on TechSmith Blog.

How to Capture Screen Images in Under a Minute

 

What is a Screenshot?

A screenshot, sometimes referred to as a screencap or screengrab, is an image that shows the contents of a computer display. Screenshots let you capture exactly what you’re seeing on your screen to share with others or reference later.

Taking, saving, and sharing screenshots can be extremely helpful. In fact, some insist that the screenshot is the most important thing on the internet. But how can a simple picture of your screen be so vital? Well, you see, screenshots often act as a new age artifact. They serve as a way to prove to others that you’re really seeing the crazy stuff you’re seeing.

Not only do they help you prove your case, they also help you archive the past. For example, they can help you capture what a website looked like before the latest brand refresh, that weird error message you got a couple months ago, or even a juicy gossip article you don’t want to risk forgetting.

How can I use screenshots?

Screenshots aren’t just handy, they’re also revolutionary to getting more work done, faster.

About Tech echoes the belief that screenshots can be extremely helpful when you need to demonstrate something that would otherwise be difficult to explain in words. Afterall, a picture is worth a thousand words!

3 Ways Screenshots Can Help You Get More Work Done

1. Collaborate with others

Does your coworker want your input on a new webpage they’ve put together? Or do they need you to look over a brochure they’re having printed? Instead of writing a lengthy email with edits, take a screenshot and wow your coworker with excellent, efficient feedback.

Marking up design concepts is faster and more effective than a wordy email

If you’re a web designer or routinely work with web designers, learn more about using screenshots to streamline your web design process.

2. Demonstrate how to perform a function

Don’t just tell. Show. Demonstrate exactly what you’re talking about with a screenshot. By using a screenshot that shows exactly what you mean, there’s less chance that you’ll be misunderstood. And that means less confusion, less time explaining, and more time back in your day.

For example, explain to a new employee how to login. Instead of telling them, you can quickly send them a screenshot that they can reference again and again without having to repeatedly ask you.

A screenshot with numbered steps is quick to make and easy to understand

3. Show exactly what’s happening

If you’ve ever contacted your IT or Web Support Team to report a bug, you’ve likely been asked to provide a screenshot. That’s because not everyone’s computer is the same. Depending on your machine, the operating system it’s running, the browser version you’re on, the way something appears for you could be completely different for others.

Providing a visual example of what you’re looking at helps others see exactly what’s going on and identify what might be going wrong.

A screenshot of an error message helps avoid confusion by showing someone exactly what you’re seeing

The best part about screenshots? They’re easy! As Buffer notes, screenshots are powerful yet simple to use. In fact, it only takes a second to make a screenshot. So start using screenshots today, and download a free trial of Snagit now.

How to Capture Screen Images in Under a Minute

So now that you know how screenshots can improve communication and productivity, here’s how you can capture screen images — and fast.

The complete guide on how to capture screen images

Here are all the types of screen capture we will cover in this guide:

1. How to take a screenshot of your entire screen (Windows | Mac)
2. How to take a screenshot of a selected portion of your screen (Windows | Mac)
3. How to take a screenshot of a window (Windows | Mac)
4. How to take a screenshot of a menu (Windows | Mac)

Feel free to use the quick links to jump to the section that you are most interested in.

The first thing you’ll want to do is download and install your screen capture software.

If you don’t already have Snagit, you can download it for free and try the software for 15 days. Snagit works on both Windows and Mac. So no matter what platform you use it will work on your system. You can capture your entire screen or only a selected portion of it. The screenshot automatically opens in the Snagit Editor where you can preview, edit, and share the capture.

How to take a screenshot on Windows

These methods work with different versions of Microsoft Windows, including Windows 8 and Windows 10.

How to take a screenshot of your entire screen (on Windows)

Step 1: Click the Capture button or Press PrtScn (Print Screen).

Step 2. Once the orange crosshairs appear, click the Fullscreen button to capture the entire screen.

how to capture screen fullscreen capture

How to take a screenshot of a selected portion of your screen (on Windows)

Step 1: Open the Capture window.

In the Notifications area, click the red TechSmith Snagit icon to open the Capture window on the screen. If you’re in the Snagit editor, click the Capture button in the toolbar to bring up the Capture window.

Step 2: Choose your screen capture settings.

The Capture window gives you a lot of flexibility depending on what type of screen capture you want to take. Grab your entire desktop, a region, or a window with Snagit’s All-in-One Capture®. Take a quick image screenshot, or even record a video.

Step 3: Click the Capture button.

Click the Capture button on any tab in the Capture window to start your screen capture. You can also start a capture with the current settings by pressing PrtScn (Print Screen), which is the default global capture hotkey. You can also customize and change the global capture hotkey.

Step 4: Click and drag the crosshairs to select part or all of your screen.

How to take a screenshot of a window (on Windows)

Step 1: Click the Capture button or Press PrtScn (Print Screen).

Step 2. Move the cursor over the window to capture. When an orange dashed border appears around the window, click to select the highlighted area.

how to capture screenshot of window pc

How to take a screenshot of a menu (on Windows)

Step 1: First, select the Image tab in the Capture window.

Step 2: Next, select Menu in the Selection dropdown.

Step 3: Select the Delay option and set number of seconds for the delay. (Optional)

Step 4: Click the Capture button or press PrtScn (Print Screen).

Step 5: Finally, your countdown will begin. Open the desired menu, and move your cursor over the menu to capture.

how to capture screenshot of menu pc


TIP: Save a Preset

To save the capture settings for future use, select Add Preset dropdown > New preset from current settings.


How to take a screenshot on a Mac

These methods work with different versions of macOS–10.10 (Yosemite), or higher.

How to take a screenshot of your entire screen (on Mac)

Step 1: Click the Capture button or press Control-Shift-C.

Step 2. Once the orange crosshairs appear, click the Fullscreen button to capture the entire screen.

how to capture screen fullscreen capture

How to take a screenshot of a selected portion of your screen (on Mac)

Step 1: Open the Capture window.

In the menu bar, click the TechSmith Snagit icon to open the Capture window on the screen. If you’re in the Snagit editor, click the Capture button in the toolbar to bring up the Capture window.

how to capture screen open capture window mac

Step 2: Choose your screen capture settings.

The Capture window gives you a lot of flexibility depending on what type of screen capture you want to take. Grab your entire desktop, a region, or a window with Snagit’s All-in-One Capture®. Take quick image screenshots. Or even record videos.

Step 3: Click the capture button.

Click the Capture button on any tab in the Capture window to start your screen capture. You can also start a capture with the current settings by pressing Control-Shift-C, which is the default global capture hotkey. You can also customize and change the global capture hotkey.

Step 4: Click and drag the crosshairs to select part or all of your screen.

how to capture screen with snagit mac

How to take a screenshot of a window (on Mac)

Step 1: Click the Capture button or press Control-Shift-C.

Step 2. Move the cursor over the window to capture. When an orange dashed border appears around the window, click to select the highlighted area.

how to capture screenshot of window mac

How to take a screenshot of a menu (on Mac)

Step 1: First, select the Image tab in the Capture window.

Step 2: Next, select Menu in the Selection dropdown.

Step 3: Select the Delay option and set number of seconds for the delay. (Optional)

Step 4: Click the Capture button or press Control-Shift-C.

Step 5: Finally, your countdown will begin. Open the desired menu, and move your cursor over the menu to capture.

4 Kinds of Screenshots You Need to Start Using Immediately

Now that you’ve seen how you can capture screen images quickly and efficiently, here are some different kinds of screenshots you can use to better visually communicate:

1. Screenshot

Definition: A single picture of a computer, smartphone, or tablet screen captured and saved as an image file.

It all starts with a basic screenshot. You don’t need to have any special applications or software to take a simple screenshot. This functionality is baked into virtually all Windows and Mac computers and smartphones at this point.

Examples:

  • Bug Reporting
  • Support Troubleshooting
  • Quickly Show Data

2. Screen capture

Definition: The action of getting all or part of the current screen and turning it into an image or video.

While they may seem similar, a screenshot and screen capture are a little different. A screenshot only refers to a static image. A desktop screen capture involves grabbing anything on your screen, including images, animated GIFs, or videos. It sounds a little bit like arguing semantics, we know, but it can make a difference depending on what end result you want.

Say you want to capture an entire spreadsheet. Now it gets a little trickier.

Normally, you’d only be able to capture what you see on your screen, but if you want to capture anything beyond that, like wide, horizontal spreadsheets or infinitely long web pages, you’ll need a screen capture tool built for that. Snagit has built-in Scrolling Capture and Panoramic Capture features that make it simple to get all the content you need in one image, rather than piecing together several screenshots.

Examples:

  • Capture a scrolling map
  • Capture a large spreadsheet
  • Capture a multi-page PDF

3. Animated GIF

Definition:  A moving picture in GIF format. A series of image frames is displayed in an animated sequence.

While animated GIFs aren’t exclusive to screen content, they can be a handy (and underutilized) way to share your screen.

Instead of taking individual screenshots to show someone a process, you can just capture a single animated GIF of what’s happening on your screen. Animated GIFs are also a lightweight file size and play automatically so they’re quick and easy to share on sites like Slack, JIRA, and Trello.

Examples:

  • Submitting Helpdesk Tickets
  • Show a Series of Steps in a Process
  • Onboarding and Walkthroughs

4. Screencast

Definition: Turning screen content into a video to teach an application or to promote a product by demonstrating features.

If you want to get more in-depth than just a simple screenshot or even an animated GIF, screencasts might be for you. If you’ve ever gotten help online for a piece of software or an application, chances are that you’ve come across a screencast.

These are videos that show your screen and usually include some sort of narration to help walk you through what you’re seeing.

Screencasts can be polished videos used by professional trainers or quick recordings to show a co-worker how to submit a ticket to IT. The idea is all the same.

Examples:

  • Tutorials
  • Video Lessons
  • Slideshare Presentations

5 Tips for Better Screen Captures

Now that you’ve learned the ins and outs of taking screen captures, here are few tips on how to make them even better!

1. Add Text and Arrows

This may seem like a no-brainer, but adding text and arrows to your screenshots can make them more engaging. By using a tool like Snagit, it’s easy to add text and arrows to point out important parts of your screen capture. For example, use an arrow to point out a spike in your monthly sales numbers and add a quick text shout-out to your team member for their success.

Now, your simple screen capture of a graph is a polished image you’ll be proud to attach to a team email.

2. Resize Screenshots Correctly

You’ve captured a screenshot to include in an important document or presentation—awesome. But you need it a little bigger, so you grab a selectable arrow from the corner of your image and stretch it to the perfect size. Oh no! Now, your screenshot is now all blurry and distorted—not awesome.

Thankfully, you can avoid the dreaded pixelation. Try resizing your picture or screenshot in an image editing program instead. You’ll want to keep the same ratio of width to height, and then add it back into your document or presentation.

3. Panoramic Capture

You may be familiar with panoramic images, but have you heard of panoramic screen captures? Panoramic photography captures long, horizontal fields of view. Similar to this technique, Snagit’s panoramic scrolling capture lets you scroll up, down, or side-to-side while taking a screenshot.

Use panoramic capture to capture wide, horizontal scrolls, infinitely scrolling webpages, and everything in between. You can take one, precise screen capture instead of stitching individual captures together.

4. Document a Process Step-by-Step

Need to teach someone how to do something? Screen captures are your best friend when it comes to showing, not just telling. Instead of writing a lengthy email outlining a process with only text, use screenshots to demonstrate. You’ll avoid having your directions misunderstood or confusing anyone. A quick way to document a process is to number steps in a screenshot or multiple screenshots.

Above is an example that was put together to demonstrate how to correctly save images for our website. Now that we’ve put together this documentation, we won’t need to repeat ourselves. This screenshot is ready to send to anyone, at any time.

5. Blur Out Sensitive Information

Want to quickly share important details, like flight times, with your boss or a client, but it has confidential information? Don’t worry. You can still take a screenshot to share. Simply blur it out. Snagit has an easy-to-use blur tool that lets you virtually erase private information.

By keeping these tips in mind, you’ll be able to take your screen captures from good to great.

As you can see, there’s a lot more to capturing your screen than just screenshots. All these screenshot types can be created in a few minutes using Snagit. I’d love to hear about what has been most successful for you!

What types of screenshots do you use and where do you use them most often?

Editor’s Note: This post was originally published in April 2017 and has been updated for accuracy and comprehensiveness.

The post How to Capture Screen Images in Under a Minute appeared first on TechSmith Blog.

How to Record a Webinar

Have you ever felt you were about to join a great webinar and wished your whole team was with you?

Whether you want to learn how to record a webinar for your own reference later, or to share the content with others, this tutorial will show you how it’s done.

Step 1. Download a screen recorder

Snagit is my favorite screen recording tool because of its versatility as an image and video capture software.

If you’re looking for more video editing power, you can also use Camtasia. Then you can record and enhance your video after you’re done recording.

Free Trial: You can try any of our screen recorders for free. Get everything you need to record on your Windows, Mac, and iOS devices.

Step 2. Set up your recording

I’ll walk through this process in Snagit, but the workflow is very similar in Camtasia. First, open a browser and navigate to your webinar. Then, in Snagit, select the Video tab.

snagit all in one capture interface screenshot

Next, press the red Capture button and use the crosshairs to select the area of your screen you want to record. You can adjust the capture area after drawing your selection using the handles on the edge of the selected area.

If you’re going to launch the webinar full screen, select your entire screen.

In the video toolbar, make sure that the system audio icon is green, as this means the video will capture the sound from your computer. If it is not green, click the icon to turn system audio on. (You can also hover your cursor over the button and the tooltip will tell you if system audio is on or off.)

In the rare case that you also want to record your voice, make sure the microphone icon is green (enabled) as well.

screenshot showing Snagit audio capture button

Step 3. Record your webinar

When the webinar starts, click the Record button and Snagit will start recording after a three- second countdown. GIF showing Snagit screen recorder count downWhile the webinar is running, be careful not to move your browser window or tab between applications. Snagit is recording everything that happens inside the selected area.

To finish recording when the webinar ends, hit Stop. You can also use hotkeys to control the recorder.

  • If you’re a Windows user, press Shift + F10 to stop the recording, and Shift + F9 to pause/resume.
  • If you’re a Mac user, press Control-Shift-V to stop the recording and Control-Shift-space to pause/resume.

When you end your recording, it will open in Snagit Editor.

Step 4. Edit and Save

From Snagit Editor, you can preview your entire video recording, cut out unwanted sections, and pull screenshots from the recording.

screenshot of Snagit trimming feature

  • To cut out unwanted sections, move the playhead to the beginning of section you want to remove, then move the red handle to the end of the unwanted section and click Cut.

GIF of Snagit video trim feature

  • To save a frame from your video recording, move the playhead to the frame you want to capture, and then click the PNG button. The image will appear in your Recent Captures Tray. Screenshot of Snagit trim feature PNG save option

To save your webinar recording, click Share and then choose from popular social media and sharing destinations like YouTube, Dropbox, and Google Drive. To save your video files as MP4s to your computer, choose the Share to File option.
Screenshot of Snagit share options

Final Tip

Recording your screen can reduce the performance of your computer. To reduce the possibility of screen lag or jumpy video, close applications you’re not using and consider lowering the resolution of your computer screen temporarily.

Recording webinars is just one helpful way to capture content from your screen. Here are some other ways to use screen capture and screen recording software as well.

What type of content do you capture from your screen? Let us know in the comments section below!

 

Editor’s Note: This post was originally published in April 2017 and has since been updated for accuracy and comprehensiveness.

The post How to Record a Webinar appeared first on TechSmith Blog.

3 Reasons to Start Using Video in your Business

One of the main selling points for inWhatLanguage is our office culture. We have a mannequin named Milton as our mascot, a basketball hoop out back, a popcorn maker in the kitchen, and we wear bright green pants. Not your typical boring translation agency, right? But the struggle is communicating our fun company culture to potential clients and partners.

inwhatlanguage crew

This is when we were introduced to TechSmith Snagit. Snagit allows our B2B agency to record personalized introduction videos to new prospects, train global staff through its screen recording capabilities, and spruce up our marketing by recording customized demo videos. Now we use videos in almost every aspect of our day-to-day operations. Allow me to dive deeper into three dynamic reasons your company should implement videos to connect with your audience and engage with people on a more intimate level.

1. Videos Will Help You Sell

Many people feel uncomfortable making major purchases without any human interaction; but people also don’t want to be smothered by an overbearing and aggressive salesman. It’s a delicate balance, but it can be achieved. When your sales team utilizes videos as part of their overall strategy, potential clients will feel more inclined to work with you.

At inWhatLanguage, we use personalized videos to introduce ourselves to everyone that requests a quote for translation services. It’s very disarming when your potential customers can put a face with the name and see your personality. They feel like they are getting to know you without actually having to talk with you, thus achieving that delicate balance we discussed earlier.

It’s time to evolve your sales process. Impersonal, stereotypical introduction emails and intrusive phone calls are a thing of the past in the age of video interactions.

Our sales team uses video interactions to develop and maintain relationships. Videos allow us to treat clients as human beings, instead of treating them as dollar signs or paychecks. Because of these relationships, your sales team will actually save time and increase overall revenue.

I cannot tell you how many times our sales team has avoided unnecessary and time-consuming meetings with clients because of short explainer videos. Have you ever been in a boring meeting wondering why the information wasn’t just sent out in an email instead? We’ve all been there. A brief explainer video will help the client understand everything you could’ve covered in a meeting and they can reference the video later on if they need a reminder.

2. Use Videos To Train Employees and Increase Productivity

We use a network of professional linguists from all over the world to help us localize content for more accurate and consistent translations. All of our linguists use our translation management platform called UNIFY, which is a technology our developers created.

As you can imagine, training thousands of linguists across the world on a new technology platform presented a unique challenge. We received many of the same questions about how to use the platform and it forced our project managers away from other critical tasks. Even with a written manual and UNIFY support on the website, this problem persisted.

Our sales team noticed our project managers struggling with this issue and recommended TechSmith as a solution. Now our project managers only need to create one video with screen sharing to train our linguists. Every time a problem comes up or a new feature is created, they can create a video and send it to our entire database of linguists and avoid tedious emails.

Even if a new linguist is hired and has questions, we can access the videos we’ve created in the past and easily send it to the new employee.

If you feel like people within your organization are explaining themselves over and over again… training videos will eliminate the process all together and help you increase productivity.

3. Videos Make Marketing Fun and Effective

inwhatlanguage mannequinEarlier, I mentioned the challenge of communicating our company culture to the world as a marketing team. Our goal is to stand out from all the other translation agencies and eradicate the stigma that B2B companies are boring.

We’ve taken advantage of TechSmith to increase our effectiveness when we launch our account-based marketing strategies.

When we’re searching for potential clients to partner with, we work hard to make our pitch feel personal. We research companies we want to work with and use videos to show them why we’d mesh well together. We’ll introduce ourselves and share our screen to show that we’ve researched their website or other content and explain how they can use our technology to access new markets. It’s personal and authentic.

We’ve noticed that people generally respond more positively when they feel like they’re being treated as an individual, instead of a nameless blur within a mass email campaign.

 

How Will You Implement Videos?

I’ve simply explained how our company has benefitted from videos we’ve created with TechSmith Snagit, but every company is unique. How are you going to implement videos into your organization? Will you interact with people on social media? Improve your email marketing strategy? Or perhaps even use some of the same ideas I’ve shared today?

Using videos in a company setting has made all jobs within our company easier and more enjoyable. What have you got to lose?

About the Author

Seth CravenSeth Craven – Marketing Coordinator at inWhatLanguage

Avid binge watcher of the Walking Dead and Stranger Things when he’s not playing basketball at work.

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How to Extract Text From An Image: The Definitive Guide

Imagine there was an easy way to get or extract text out of an image and quickly paste it into another document. The good news is that you no longer have to waste time typing everything out because there are programs that use Optical Character Recognition (OCR) to analyze the letters and words in an image, and then convert them to text.

There are a number of reasons why you might want to extract text from an image or PDF.

  • Paste text from an image or screenshot into Microsoft Office or another document.
  • Capture text in an error message, pop-up window, legacy app, or drop-down menu where text can’t be selected.
  • Capture the text in a file directory (filename, file size, date modified).

Regardless of your situation, this type of functionality can be helpful, especially when you need to copy information from a file folder or screenshot of a website that typically would require you to spend a significant amount of time retyping all of the text.

Luckily, there’s a dead simple way to capture text or convert a picture of text to editable text. With Snagit, it only takes a few steps to quickly grab text from an image.

Here’s everything you need to know about how to capture text off your computer screen or pull text out of an image.

How to capture text on Windows or Mac

Step 1: Set up your capture settings

To capture text, open the Capture Window, select the Image tab, and set the selection to Grab Text.

how to capture text on Windows or Mac step 1

You can also speed things up by using  the Grab Text Preset.

Step 2: Capture your screen

Initiate your capture, then use the crosshairs to select the region of your screen with the text that you want.

Snagit analyzes the text from your selection and displays the formatted text. If the font identified is not installed on your computer, Snagit will substitute it with a system font of similar style.

how to capture text on Windows or Mac step 2

Select the text you want to copy or click Copy All… to copy all of the text to your clipboard.

Step 3: Paste your text

Finally, you can paste the text into a document, presentation, or any other destination.

how to capture text on Windows or Mac step 3

How to extract text from an image

Step 1: Find your image

You can capture text from an scanned image, a saved image on your computer, or an image from your Snagit library.

extract text from image step 1

Step 2: Open Grab Text in Snagit

With the image open in Snagit’s Editor, go to the Edit menu and select Grab Text.

Or, simply right- or control-click on the image, and select Grab Text.

extract text from image step 2

Step 3: Copy your text

Then copy the text and paste it into other programs and applications.

extract text from image

And that’s it. It doesn’t take much effort at all to get text from an image.

If you have any tips you’ve found for extracting text from image, we’d love to hear them in the comments below.

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Working with your Subject Matter Expert

When it comes to developing great curriculum for the humans in your organization, finding the right subject matter expert (SME) can mean the difference between elegant content simplicity or complexity in motion.

We can all accept that design simplicity is critical to the exchange of knowledge. As workplace educators, our job is help people succeed in the workplace. Our SME has a different role. Their role is to have complete knowledge of the topic. Their knowledge helps the organization perform at level best.

Now enter the big question. How do you get the right amount of information from the SME into the training content?

First and foremost, before getting to the 6 tips, try to imagine how the SMEs think about the world around them and their role within the organization. Take a moment to stop and remember their perspective will be inherently different from your own. Your goals are different, your perspective of the business needs will be different and your approach to solving those problems will be different.

Keeping this point of view in mind, here are 6 Tips to help you build your relationship with your SME.

Active Listening

Developing your active listening skills will help you in all areas in your life and not only working effectively with SMEs. Your SME may appear to be difficult in your first meeting, this is due to their passion about the topic.

If this is your first time working together, try to break the ice and discover common ground. Share success stories or stories of difficult projects. Reflect on what they are telling you and why.

Remember, active listening means focusing on the the words and showing verbal and nonverbal signs of listening. Pay attention to what is not being said as well as the content of the words. Such emotional attunement will level up your ability to understand your SME’s point of view.

Avoid Assumptions

As with any working relationship, avoiding assumptions will get you closer to your goal.

Our gut reactions have a tendency to believe SME’s will share our overall perspective. We assume the SME will agree because you both have the best interests of the organization in mind.

However, studies on a cognitive bias called the “false consensus effect” indicate we significantly overestimate the extent to which others agree with our opinions. As a result, we are actually closer to conflict when we assume agreement with the SME and it contributes to the “us versus them” mentality.

The key is to ask solid follow-up questions: “I think I heard you say…” or “Help me understand why this is important?” This will get you both closer to your goal.

Remove Communication Barriers

For open and honest communication to work, first remove communication barriers.

Figure out your communication preferences and compromise on something that works well for both of you. The importance of adapting one’s communication style to your SME cannot be underestimated. A great beginning is in understanding your SME’s mental state – is your SME happy, excited, frustrated or even angry about working on the project? You will have to adjust your communication style accordingly.

As with active listening, as you communicate with each other, don’t listen only to what the other person is saying. Listen to the emotions underneath the words. SMEs are understandably passionate about their subject. Acknowledge their passion and work together to clarify goals.

Be Prepared to Disagree

Conflicts can be healthy! Don’t let the first serious disagreement lead to the end of the partnership. Instead, learn strategies for healthy conflict resolution.

Talk about both the facts and how you feel about them. Be open to understanding why your SME feels strongly about certain content, images or processes. It’s easy to self-sabotage the relationship by trying to put yourself in a position of power, however be as generous as you can be in interpreting the other person’s actions. Be open to changing your mind if you discover you made a mistake and apologize quickly.

Collaborative Compromise!

Compromise in the workplace sometimes gets a bad rap. But sometimes we have to compromise to get the hard work done. In this case let’s talk about compromise in this way, “Individual commitment to a group effort to reach an agreed goal”. Compromise doesn’t have to be a win-lose scenario.

When you and your SME collaborate for agreed compromise, you both integrate ideas and energies so that the whole is greater than the sum of the parts. Balance getting your needs met with meeting the needs of the SME.

Remember, Your SME has worked hard to achieve the level of knowledge they have, respecting this will get you further than focusing on being right.

Set Expectations

There is nothing wrong with setting some ground rules for working together. Setting the expectations with your SME will ensure everyone is on the same page at the same time.

  • Know your project may not be the SME’s main priority. Be sure to establish clear guidelines for communication and collaboration.
  • Create a collaboration area to minimize meetings and to respect the SME’s time. Use tools like Evernote, Google Docs or other project management tools to share information.
  • Be sure everyone is clear on deadlines and review cycles. Get the SME’s buy-in and write a schedule with agreed review dates.
  • Record meeting notes in a shared document to avoid misunderstandings.

At the end of the day, you and the SME both want the same thing; to help people in the organization perform at the highest levels. Because people are people, this takes some negotiation and ground rules to meet those goals. Use these 6 tips to help guide your project journey and you’ll see higher success rates with your content and SME’s who actually want to work on projects.

About the Author

Shannon TiptonAs owner of Learning Rebels, Shannon Tipton knows what it takes for businesses to get real results from their training departments. Having spent over 20 years developing successful learning strategies and infrastructures, Shannon has helped businesses to realize their full potential.

Working throughout North America, Europe and Korea, Shannon has demonstrated an unrelenting passion for enabling businesses to achieve applicable business results. Shannon utilizes her extensive real-world expertise and integrates 21st century learning technologies and microlearning tools that drive workplace alignment, enhance collaboration and increase learning connectivity.

Shannon’s book, “Disruptive Learning,” is known in the business industry as an innovative workplace learning strategy resource. As a result, Shannon has been named as one of eLearning’s Top 100 Movers and Shakers. Her blog, “Learning Rebels” is also in the top 100 eLearning blogs and can be found at learningrebels.com.

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