Complete Guide to Animoto for Photographers

Moira West


We’ve put together a guide showing you how to create stunning Animoto slideshow videos and marketing videos for your photography business. Read on to get tips on how to customize your videos, plus find video examples and ideas to help inspire your next project.

The Complete Guide to Animoto for Pro Photographers

How to make a photography slideshow video

Client slideshows are a simple way to make a big impression. Whether you’re using slideshows for in-person sales sessions, remote reveals, or as an add-on to your packages, a good slideshow can add that wow factor that makes clients rave to friends and family about your work.

Select a style or template

Animoto has dozens of templates, including some designed especially for photographers—like the Behind the Scenes template shown below. Each template is designed to be customized, so you can drag and drop your own photos and update the colors and style to match your brand or your client’s taste.

You can also design your video from the ground up. Click the START FROM SCRATCH button in the upper-right-hand corner of your screen. Then choose your video style and get started. If you’re not sure which style to choose, check out our video style guide to find the right fit for your video.

Add photos and video clips

Once you’ve started a video, you can upload your photos and video clips from a shoot. If you want to zoom in on an image or adjust your framing, just double click on a particular block to see additional editing features. You can click ADD A BLOCK to find options for photo collages and photo burst, if you want to create effects or layouts using more than one photo at a time.

Animoto Expert Tip: Did you know you can select a bunch of photos in your Media tray all at once? If you’re using a Mac, press the Command key and click the first image you’d like to add to your dashboard, then click the last image you want while pressing the Command key again. You should see a blue line around all the images in between. Drag the whole group over and you’re all set! The process is the same for a PC—just press Shift instead of Command.

Customize your slideshow

Want to create a custom slideshow for your clients? Here are a few ways you can keep your videos on-brand and looking beautiful.

  • Watermark your work: Make sure your work has your branding on it when it’s shared by clients by adding a watermark to the corner of each slideshow. Take a look at our post on how to add a watermark, and get some best practices, too.

  • Include a logo: You can also add a Logo block anywhere in your video by selecting Logo under the ADD A BLOCK button. Logos are a good way to reinforce your brand at the end of a video, especially when you’re creating a digital album clients can share on social media, like the template featured below.

  • Keep slideshows on brand: You have the power to customize the colors and fonts in your slideshow to fit your brand or your theme. Take a look at all the options under the Design toolbar, or double-click on a single block to change the look of just one part of your video. To get a look at the different ways you can customize your video, take a look at this post on the different options available in Animoto.

  • Share a message: Text can help you tell a story when you combine them with your images. Add text that talks about time, place, or include a quote to help evoke emotion. You can add text to any block in Animoto, including those with video clips, collages, or photo bursts.

Pick your music

The right song can help elevate the emotions clients feel when watching one of your slideshows. Animoto gives you access to thousands of licensed songs as part of your subscription. Search for the right song using our music filters or favorite tunes to save them for later. Learn more about all our music tools here.

If you’re looking for some music inspiration, check out a few of the song recommendation posts we’ve written. We have music suggestions for weddings, portrait photography, boudoir, children’s photography, newborn photography, and maternity shoots.

Share your slideshow

Once you’ve finished your slideshow, share it! Download an HD version of your video to show on a big screen at sales sessions, or post a sneak peek on social and tag your client to help draw attention to your work.

How to make a photography marketing video

Short, snappy, and attention-grabbing, marketing videos can help catch the eye of potential clients on social. Here are a few ways to take the slideshow skills discussed above and use them to create marketing videos that stand out.

Timing is everything

Shorter video ads are becoming the norm with 6-second ads becoming more and more popular with advertisers and their audiences. So keeping your video snappy can give you an edge if you’re advertising on social. Fast-paced images, like those in a photo burst, can quickly demand attention and show off your photography skills before any potential clients can swipe past your ads. Get more info about how to make a photo burst, or check out the video below to learn some ways you can add a photo burst to your video.

Add text for mobile-first viewing

Viewers scrolling through Facebook or Instagram on their phones are more likely to be watching with the sound off. Make sure your message comes through loud and clear by adding text. Read over a few of our designer-approved tips for getting text that complements your eye-catching images.

Need text-spiration? Templates like the Photography Service Promo or Sneak Peek offer high-impact text that your audience can’t miss.

Animoto Expert Tip: Test out any marketing video on your mobile device. Since the majority of your audience is catching your content on their phones, it pays to make sure your images and text are clear on a smaller screen.

Match your video to where you’re posting

Different social platforms need different types of videos. Vertical, sound-on videos work best for Stories, while square, sound-off videos are a better fit for Facebook and Instagram feeds. Get a rundown of what works best where in our social media cheat sheet.

Add Stories to the mix

According to Instagram, Instagram Stories has 500 million daily active users. And Mediakix found 1 in 3 people on Instagram said they became interested in a product through Instagram Stories. As a photographer, you’ve got the eye to create amazing-looking Stories. Check out our vertical video tips, then head to our new iOS app to find tools to elevate your next Instagram Story.

Slideshow video ideas

There’s more than one way to make a slideshow. Take a look at a few ways photographers are impressing clients and boosting sales with client slideshows.

Reveal slideshow

Whether your clients are there in person or you’re conducting a remote reveal, a slideshow featuring the best shots from your shoot can mean the difference between packages. Include it as an incentive for a higher package or include it as a thank you gift.

Sneak peek

Before your sales session, get your client excited with a sneak peek. Include a glimpse of some of your favorite images and share them online to build anticipation for your sales session.

Digital Album

Word of mouth is the best advertising. And a shareable digital album can encourage clients to share your images—and your name—with friends and family. Make a short slideshow featuring the client’s favorite images, along with a meaningful quote or date.

This type of video is a great choice for newborn photographers, who can get exposure by creating a birth announcement for new parents. Wedding photographers can turn engagement photos into a super-shareable save-the-date video.

Same-day slideshow

If you’re a wedding photographer, you can impress clients—and wedding attendees—by creating a quick, same-day slideshow. Put together photos from the ceremony in just a few minutes, download your high-definition video, and show the finished product on a screen at the reception. Read up on a few more ideas for wedding photography slideshows in this post.

Marketing video ideas

Whether you’re spending for video ads or just trying to keep up with all your social accounts, video can add variety and visibility to your social media feeds. Check out a few ways you can advertise your photography using marketing videos.

Explain what you do

Give a brief explanation of who you are and what you can do for your client. Focus on the benefits of your services and why having images from a pro photographer can be so important.

Promote a special event

Get the word out about mini-sessions or special events by sharing a video on social media. Make sure to include a way potential clients can get in touch along with your favorite shots from previous events.

Give a gift suggestion

Professional photography makes an amazing gift, and it’s a good idea to start promoting your services as a gift idea before major holidays.

Go behind the scenes

Help clients imagine a session with you by taking them behind the scenes in your studio. Describe the experience, dwelling on any special features designed to pamper clients and make them feel comfortable during their shoot.

Share a list

Get noticed with the type of content social media users love to share. Put together a list that relates to your style of photography, like the one featured below, and share. Make it general enough that it’ll appeal to your target audience, even if they’re not looking for a photographer… yet.

Get inspirational

Need a quick Instagram idea? Find one of your favorite quotes, pair it with an amazing image, and post to your Feed or to your Stories in just a few minutes.

Ready to create your own slideshow or marketing video? Click below to get started.