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Tools to Trim Your Marketing Video

When it comes to recording for video marketing, clips often tend to be too long. If you want to use a one-take video, you can simply trim off unwanted pieces at the beginning and the end. Fortunately, trimming a clip on your computer is fairly easy. The best tool depends on the platform you use:

  • On the Mac: Mac users already have QuickTime X, a preinstalled media player that has basic editing features.

    If you want to trim a clip, open the video file in QuickTime X, and then choose the Edit→Trim command. A timeline showing the entire clip appears. Drag the yellow handles to mark the start and end of the clip, and then click the Trim button. The resulting clip can be saved or exported for use on YouTube or on your website.

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  • On the PC: PC users can select from a variety of video processing tools that provide the trimming function.

    An easy way is to use Windows Movie Maker. This simple editing application is free, and it works well if you want to trim only a few clips.

  • On a smartphone: To record video, you may be able to trim on the spot. The Apple iPhone has a built-in trimming feature. To access it on the iPhone, shoot the video, press the Pictures icon on the iPhone home screen to open the camera roll, and then select the Camera Roll album.

    When you click the video, you see the timeline at the top. As in QuickTime, you drag the yellow handles to mark the start and end of the clip and then click the Trim button when you’re done.

    Save the trimmed video as a new clip, or else you lose the rest of your footage.

Some simple video programs even let you assemble multiple clips into a longer clip. For example, QuickTime X lets you add a clip to the end of the current clip by choosing the Edit→Add Clip to End command.

On a PC, use Windows Movie Maker and simply drag and drop the clips to the storyboard. This method works for assembling two or three clips, but don’t expect it to replace an editing program. As soon as you want to move beyond the simplest trimming level (and save time in the end), invest in quality editing software.

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