Reaching a larger audience.

5 replies [Last post]
ddmurphy
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Joined: Mar 21 1999

Bob

I have read on these pages much in depth considered discussion about the magazine's content, editorial, cover mounted CD, and price change. Many seem to think that video editing is and should be a 'niche' activity.

I am puzzled, surely there must 10's of thousands of camcorders in the UK alone and many of the owners must have high spec computers. Why are they not buying Computer Video and editing like us? I think that this number this will only increase with the advent of DV camcorders and ever more powerful computers. Is it a matter of education to bring our fellow videomakers into the editing field? I think not, I have two suggestions:-

The first is directly for Computer Video and that is a name change. When I have searched WH Smiths for the magazine(No I have not subscribed yet), the shop seems uncertain where to place the magazine. Sometimes it is with the games magazines, sometimes with Camcorder User and sometimes with the home cinema magazines. People don't know we exist! I suggest that the name be changed to describe, perhaps more accurately what the magazine does. How about Desktop Video Editing or Video Editing or Camcorder Editing.

My second suggestion is a campaign by our(note the our) magazine to reduce the price of a decent standard capture boards(say DC30+level) and editing software to around £100 and not the £600-700 at the moment. I believe the high price is preventing many people from joining our merry band of editors.

As I said above the ownership of high quality video cameras along with powerful computers is going to increase rapidly in the next few years and we should try to bring them on board...Just think what has happened in the last year!

Any comments anybody?

Regards

David Murphy

bcrabtree
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Joined: Mar 7 1999

David,

WH Smith's staff have explicit instructions about where the mag should be placed in store - which is in the video mags section.

I wanted it to be in the computer section - because more people browse there - but the good folk at WH Smith said, no.

I probably wouldn't contemplate a name change which meant that WH Smith's staff would more usually put the mag in the video section.

As for the names:

We ruled out Desktop Video Editing at the outset because we thought a lot of people wouldn't know what it meant. I don't think the company feels any differently now - though, personally, it would have been my preferred title.

Video Editing would be mislead, because we don't do much about non-linear.

Camcorder Editing, doesn't really say what we do, either, and is also misleading because there are lots of other areas of DTV that we cover that don't have anything to do with camcorder footage.

Anyone got any other suggestions for names for the mag? Or believe a name change would be helpful?

As for campaigning for £100 capture card and software bundles, there are two BIG problems that I forsee. The first is that we will end up with lowest-common-denominator products, such as Marvel, paired with Avid Cinema (only worse) and that lots of people will end up worse of because they'll need to upgrade the software to something better - assuming the low-end cards support anything better (which I doubt).

The other fear I have is that the dreadful support (or total lack of support) that users suffer would only get worse.

The natural pace of change in the computer world will dictate that prices of capture cards steadily fall, anyway, and that has been happening. However, what will be happening alongside, I hope, is that FireWire will become adopted as a WinTel motherboard standard, as it has with Apple Mac G3s.

What I'd like to see, though, is an equalisation of pricing between here and the USA - that would be a big help.

The real problem, as I see it, is that there are lots of existing computer owners whose kit would allow them to edit video already, if only they knew it.

I regard every owner of a computer with a TV tuner card as a potential editor; and the same applies to the huge number of business people who regularly give presentations.

We haven't properly addressed the educational market either - primary, secondary or tertiary - and media studies (including video and video editing) is a big thing.

And nor have we even attempted properly to address all those people who already have video editing systems but haven't heard about the mag.

We don't try to hook them when they buy their video editing hardware or software, which we really should do by cutting deals with the makers or distributors to include free-issue and trial-subscription offers.

Worse still, we haven't got our act together yet with the internet, to provide readers (and potential readers) with a first class video editing resource and the option to subscribe to an electonic version of the mag, rather than pay a mad amount of money for the paper version if they live abroad
The list of folk who should be interested in the mag is very large - though probably still not sufficiently large for CV not to be a niche publication.

Believe me, I've got lots and lots of ideas for growing the mag's circulation and sales. All I need is some time to properly plan and implement them.

Cheers

Bob C

[This message has been edited by bcrabtree (edited 07-05-99).]

Gladders
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Joined: Apr 28 1999

Obviously the staff at Dorking WHSmith agree with you, Bob, as they have put the magazine in the Computer section for several months now. It used to be in the photographic, digital camera and video camera section.
As to persuading more people with video cameras to take up NLE, yes, no doubt it will become more popular as people hear about it and see the amazingly professional results your readers can produce. But I think it will always be a niche market. Most video camera owners only drag them out for highdays and holidays, and are perfectly happy to display their un-edited offerings.
I must admit that I bought my first video camera (digital) last July after seeing the quality had reached a just about acceptable level (I'm used to photographic slides). I had every intention of getting into NLE but have yet to dive in, especially seeing the huge learning curve and horendous problems that people have to contend with. I think that computer video and computers in general are in a similar stage of developement to cars in the 1920s, when users had to hand crank and adjust advance and retard themselves. Some people like playing around with the technology, most would like it to do what it's supposed to do without tweaking it, trying different cards and pulling hair out, me included. I will dive in `cause I can see there is loads of enjoyment to be had, but NLE will have to be a lot more `plug and play' before it becomes a mass market interest.

Paul

ddmurphy
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Joined: Mar 21 1999

Bob

Thanks for the explanation! I can sense enthusiasm in every paragraph. The point about price equalisation is well taken. I have found that prices are up to 50% cheaper in the USA than in Europe(even for products made here). I hope you/we are succesful in extending the circulation base if only for the reason that NLE is great fun and more people should experience it. I also agree with Gladders that the hardware and software should be more plug and play. It is apparent that many companies put their wares in the market before they suitably tested and wait for we users to do their work for them. e.g Adobe Premiere 5.

Regards

David

p.s. I still would prefer a different name!

bcrabtree
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Joined: Mar 7 1999

I think the cars-in-the-20s analogy is not far away from the truth.

I'd also like to hear what other people think about the idea of a name change for the mag.

Oh, and I really do want to hear people's suggestions about how we can run a campaign about bringing down prices in the UK, so all ideas would be most welcome.

Bob C

Charles
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Joined: Apr 7 1999

You have Camcorder User,What Video & TV,ETC
you could change to Camcorder & Computer Video.
Regards Charles

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Regards
Charles
avsvideo.co.uk