Here Jonathan Miles talks about how Pictory has helped his marketing agency produce content and save time.


Jonathan Miles is a freelance copywriter, graphic designer and marketer. He talks to us today about how Pictory has cut hours of production down, both for himself and his future clients. How he’s learning on the job, how he has welcomed our consistent updates, and why listening to our community has reaped rewards for users.

Jonathan Miles: I'm a freelance copywriter and graphic designer. And I suppose a marketer, I do quite a bit of marketing. I mainly work exclusively for a technology marketing consultant called Cambridge Management Consulting. We are trying to rapidly expand their marketing capability at the moment. We are just a small team, but we'll be growing really quickly. So it's about time at the moment and speed, which is why we've been using Pictory.

Pete Bennett: That's brilliant. So you mentioned before that you use other editors, what was the main disadvantage of using some of the more traditional desktop-based editors?

Jonathan Miles: Am I okay to name them?

Pete Bennett: Of course, go ahead. This is why they're not competition, we're used to winning!

Jonathan Miles: I use a variety of programs, I'm always trying to find other programs, and Pictory has been easily the best. One of the programs was Adobe Suite, which I still use because of Photoshop and everything else. I find video Premiere Pro and After Effects are frustratingly hard to use and time-consuming. Even using plugins for transitions still takes so long, and that's for a basic one-minute video

Whereas Pictory takes all the pain away and does so much of it for you. It's just a really smooth experience. I can make a video which has consistency, a fixed consistent look. It's smooth, it doesn't have any problems and I can do that in 10 minutes for example.

Pete Bennett: Wow! So if you've taken 10 minutes using Pictory, what would be the equivalent time that you'd need using the Adobe Suite?

Jonathan Miles: It depends on what you're trying to do. I'm not the fastest, maybe there are people faster. I am self-taught on Adobe but well over an hour, probably a couple of hours to get all the transitions in. Then after that, more time on all the faults and things that don't quite look right.

Pete Bennett: So of the functions within Pictory, which do you tend to use the most?

Jonathan Miles: I’m going to do some more exploring because there are some that I'm going to use more. But I have to say the script to video, and article to videos, are the ones we use the most. Something we have been doing is writing blogs for our company, we're doing a lot more articles and we will eventually be doing that for our clients. Having the ability to put the blog up on my website, and then just stick the URL in and get a video up is just mind-blowing.

Pete Bennett: Are you then embedding that video within the blog itself? Or are you using it as a piece of standalone material?

Jonathan Miles: That goes out on social media. I have just started embedding the videos on our website and to be honest, I don't know why I wasn't doing it before. I think I thought it was more difficult. We will start embedding the videos, but at the moment they just go on our social streams as individual videos.

Pete Bennett: Okay, so this is really repurposing the content that you've already written, then using pictures to disseminate that across all the different social channels that you use.

Jonathan Miles: Yes, exactly. I've got a new boss, a CMO and he's all about speed and scaling up, which is what we're doing at the moment. And so for him, it’s about time. With Pictory you can take a blog and then you've got a video within 10 minutes, he was all over that.

Pete Bennett: Brilliant. Do you use the built-in voices? Or do you do your own voiceover?

Jonathan Miles: I haven't had time, to be honest. We want to do voiceover but I've not had the confidence yet to use my own voice, so I haven't tried that out yet. That's mainly my own slight inclination to hearing myself on video. So at the moment, we've they've just had a music backdrop.

Pete Bennett: Okay. So Pictory has built-in AI voices if you want to try those. If you want to upload your own voice, then one of the great things about Pictory is it will save you a lot of time, as it automatically syncs your voice to the slides. If you've ever tried using Premiere Pro to do those kinds of synchronisation you're in for a lot of work. Every transition you have to do manually, Pictory will just do that automatically. So again, that's a time saver for the future, perhaps when you want to explore that function more.

Jonathan Miles: Yes, I'd really like to try it. I did actually read that it did that. I've been meaning to try it, so I will be doing that really soon.

Pete Bennett: That's brilliant. If somebody was on the fence and wondering about trying to Pictory, what would you say to them?

Jonathan Miles: You've absolutely got to give this a go, particularly if you're a marketing team of any size because it's not how big you are, and time is everything these days. We have already said it can be so time-consuming to construct a video. You may need to do, 5-20 of these, depending on your size. If you're selling out to other clients, it might even be 50-100 and you haven't got the time to construct two unless you use a tool like this. And it really does work so well.

What I particularly like is the updates you've done recently, which is great, you've really listened to your community. The updates recently have really been great and you can tweak it so easily. The AI does 75% of the work for you and it's really good. Obviously, it doesn't get everything right. But you can easily go in and change a video in the background.

You can upload your own videos, add an intro and an outro, video edit and play and that’s that key. Plus add a voiceover, a still image, anything you want, change the text, highlight the text, change it to your branding, add a logo, all of that is really quick to do. The whole thing is really smooth, kudos to your development team, it’s such a well-built interface and it's really user-friendly.

Pete Bennett: That's brilliant. I'll pass that on to the development team.

Jonathan Mile: It's a great job, a nice, clean, simple platform.

Pete Bennett: We bring out updates every couple of weeks, and the main source of information for those updates, is the Facebook group. So thank you very much for your time today.

Jonathan Miles: It’s been great. Thank you for your time and thank you for Pictory.

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