Saving time with system and tools: @Powtoon

The video above was made with a template with Powtoon, a template-based tool for making animated videos and slideshow presentations.

I’ve actually been waiting two years to make this tool overview – about two years ago, they were kind enough to extend a free account to me.

This was after I couldn’t wrap my mind around how to use it after a free trial. So, right away, points to the customer support staff and policies.

I’m not sure when – I want to say fall 2015 – Powtoon went from a neat but hard to use tool, to a really easy way to create animated explainer videos.


If you want to use video frequently, but like me are camera shy or not always in good health, it’s really easy to use. I was able to create the video above in about an hour, including all the tweaks, over the course of a few days.

You start out with a template, and decide if you’re going to create a video or slideshow. Then there are elements within each slide that you can edit.

You can swap out a different character from the premium library, make it wave instead of put its hand up, change colors- it’s highly customizable. It makes creating a video as easy as creating a slide in Powerpoint or Keynote.

When you’re done, if you have a premium or business account, you can

  • upload it directly to YouTube, Wistia, or Vimeo,
  • download it in HD (480, 720 or 1080),
  • grab a link to the video in your Powtoon account
  • embed the Powtoon version on your site from its special page
  • generate a doc of all the text in the presentation (called a transcript – haven’t tried it with my own voice over)
  • or assign Creative Common rights.

There’s much more you can do besides that, but this isn’t meant to be a full review.

However, if you create multiple short animated videos each month or would like to, I highly recommend it for people who don’t have the time or the desire to learn how to make these videos from scratch.

You can try it out free yourself. If you like it but can’t afford the monthly fee, there is a pay-per-export version of their pricing at the bottom that’s quite economical.

But trust me, if you think you’re going to make more than a handful a month, the tool makes it so easy that you’re likely to make up for it in time saved.

I haven’t received any monetary compensation for this overview- although about two years back, a free trial of this product was extended to me. There was, however, no request for a review.


Part of the #60to15 series for entrepreneurs on shortening your work week.
As always if you want to add to the list, just create a blog post, Instagram post or tweet, and add it to the #60to15 hashtag, then anyone can read your submission. I’ll do round-ups to feature the best ones.