Wistia Style – Build your DIY learning video studio for $100

When I learned about Wistia, a video platform for business, I was blown away.

Wistia’s videos are creative, artistic, and entertaining. I’m referring to the videos in their Learning Library on their website. I learned at least one thing I could put into practice from every video I watched.

Then it hit me.

They made marketing videos educational, and they made educational videos marketable.

That is, the videos were entertaining, engaging, and added value.


I remember the days when e-learning took months of development that followed a formula like this:

Several Slides + Voice-Over Audio + Processing in Adobe Captivate = e-learning

And software screencasts:

Captivate or Camtasia Voice-over audio track = e-learning

Unfortunately, these formulas became so pervasive — and ultimately even replaced most instructor-led training in our industry — that learners equated online learning with “Training sucks.”

They sucked the humanity out of teaching, coaching, and learning.

Your employees, customers, partners deserve better. Your business deserves better.

Imagine the branding and business impact you can bring to your company by elevating the online learning video standard. What if you made videos personal that resonated with the human element?

You might not even have online learning at the moment, but you can bring it to life and start elevating your company’s learning experiences in days.

Days. Not months. Days.

And you don’t need a big budget or a big production team.

What impact could you have by elevating your customer, partner, and employee education with human-centered videos and for a fraction of the cost of what you’d pay a video production firm?

Meet Brian from SoundHound

Brian Bautista, a SoundHound product marketer and customer educator, used the strategies and techniques from this toolkit and Wistia’s DIY kit.

He created the first Hound How-To, a series of customer education videos that put a face and personality to Hound’s customer support.

Internally, a new excitement was in the air as SoundHound’s marketing team realized how engaging and humanizing this made customer education.

And here’s the best part of all: Brian spent about $100 and only a single day to write, film, edit, and produce the first video prototype so he could show a proof of concept to his colleagues.

The prototype was a huge hit at SoundHound. The head of marketing immediately approved the video to launch publicly and green-lit more.

Check out Brian’s first video prototype on YouTube:


One More Story

Brian launched Hound How-To videos with a simple prototype and a tiny budget.

He believed it was possible because I showed him step-by-step how my team and I did it at Medallia.

The learning team at Medallia was in an early stage formation. The team was relatively young and inexperienced.

Once I shared how it’s possible to make engaging videos like Wistia, one of my favorite teammates and I realized one thing:

We won’t convince anyone to adopt this approach and build a video studio by just talking about it.

We simply did it.

We used our iPhones, an empty conference room, a solid colored wall for background, scoop lamps from the hardware store, and a makeshift tripod.

It was the scrappiest prototype I’ve ever made. From start to finish, it took us about 3 full days.

We shared our production at the next HR all-hands meeting. People couldn’t believe it.

Our head of HR was so excited, he approved a $7,000 budget to build our DIY video studio with higher quality equipment. We spent just under $6,000 total and used a spare storage room in the back corner of the building.

My favorite part: my teammate, who was just starting her career, has since become known at Medallia for being the go-to person to make great learning videos.

It’s unlocked creativity, scalable training videos, and most importantly, a personal approach to learning.

Medallia’s internal communications team and marketing team use the studio too, bringing together cross-functional teams that otherwise wouldn’t interact much at most companies.

Why this matters

You can do this too. Your team can do this.

And I’m 100% confident it will be a game-changer for your company. Just like it has been for SoundHound and Medallia.

Before next time, I encourage you to do two things…

1. Watch Brian’s first Hound How-To video. Here’s the link again.

2. Study how Wistia advises setting up a DIY video studio so you can create one at your company. Watch the DIY Video Studio and Down and Dirty Lighting Kit videos.

Let me know if you have questions. I’m happy to help you get this set up and be wildly successful.

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