Founder Stories: Eduard Stinga On Building VideoPlasty
In today’s Founder Story, we feature Eduard Stinga, Founder of VideoPlasty!
Read on for lessons he has learned from launching and marketing his business.
1. Please introduce your business and share your role.
Hi, I’m Eduard Stinga, founder of VideoPlasty.
We created VideoPlasty for creative people all over the world to help solve all their animation needs with drag & drop simplicity.
Whether you’re making a PowerPoint presentation and you don’t want to have just boring slides with text on them; or you’re creating any sort of video animation, training video or explainer video and you want to build it in only a few minutes instead of tens of hours, without any previous animation experience or skills, then the stock animation from VideoPlasty helps make your life so much easier.
2. What’s your backstory, what kind of challenges did you face, and how did you come up with your business idea?
For more than a decade, I ran an explainer production company, making really high-end custom videos for startups, mobile apps, and Fortune 500 companies. Being such a complex service that involved many people in our team and took 100-200 hours for one single project, it was really out of most people’s budgets.
So in order to reach more people and make animation simple, accessible, and affordable to as many people as possible, we came up with the concept of stock animation – pre-made animation assets that you can mix & match with drag & drop simplicity and have professional level animations at your fingertips in a fraction of the time it would take you otherwise and without having to be an expert yourself.
Now, we already had the animation skills, so the biggest hurdle for us was turning this into an online e-commerce-style platform where you can purchase, license, and download stock animation assets with ease.
Without having huge budgets to start with, we decided that while we test the waters it’s best we go with a simple solution that works out of the box, such as Shopify or WooCommerce, to keep costs low and launch an MVP.
3. How did you prepare for, and go about your launch?
There was no “official” launch, we just slowly built the site and attempted to drive traffic to it every day until things started snowballing organically.
Because we are fully bootstrapped and our biggest competitors sell anywhere from 8 to 9 figures every year, launching with paid ads was really not in our plans.
We had to take the alternate route and build organically, with “free” traffic sources. I put free in quotation marks, as while you don’t really pay with money, it does take a significant amount of time to implement and see results.
Some of the things we tried were YouTube videos, SEO, forums, Reddit, and other social media that slowly built and drove traffic over time.
4. Since launching, what types of marketing campaigns and designs have worked best to attract and retain customers?
On our side, we are 100% sold on YouTube. Even today 2023, I think YouTube is one of the best ways to build a brand, build a following, and drive insane amounts of free organic traffic every single day.
It’s a very long-term play and it’s not as simple as it was a few years back, but it’s still hands-down our favorite approach.
Tutorials, how-to, talking-head videos, examples, case studies, vlogs, listicles – so many different types of videos you can make on YouTube to start getting views and traffic to your site.
In our case, we didn’t want to play with trends and rely so much on the algorithm, so we went with evergreen topics that would rank high in search results and provide constant traffic every single day vs. trending videos that might blow up and then 1-2 weeks later people forget about them.
5. What have been the most influential brands for your business? Whose branding and marketing do you aspire to and why?
You tend to get inspiration from so many places, but if I had to pick one, it would be Alex Becker. He’s really had a huge influence on the YouTube game, branding, and marketing outside the box. Plus, combined with his monk levels of discipline, he became literally unstoppable, as we can see now after his 9-figure exit from his startup Hyros.
6. What are your favorite marketing platforms/tools?
In terms of tools, we keep things very straightforward and simple: Slack, Figma, Adobe, and email. Plus whatever the developers are using, which is beyond my knowledge 🙂
As for marketing platforms – we try to stay active as much as possible on YouTube. So if you combine that with analytics and competitors’ data from Social Blade and other useful data from VidIQ or TubeBudy, you’re pretty much covered in terms of YouTube marketing.
7. Who or what inspires and motivates you?
When I was younger I was motivated by ego and money, which is fairly normal I suppose for a guy in his early 20s. Now that I’m a little wiser (hopefully!), I’m inspired and motivated much more by building a product that people love using, but also by helping and taking care of the people around me and leaving a legacy.
8. What are some lessons you’ve learned along the way that you would share with entrepreneurs hoping to launch or who have just launched?
Nobody really has all the answers, most people just throw stuff at the wall to see what sticks. And if you work hard enough and show up consistently, on a long enough timeline you make talent a variable that will not matter.
9. What do you believe are the qualities of a good entrepreneur? And what makes a team successful?
If I look around at all the entrepreneurs that I know, they come from all walks of life and have incredibly different personalities and approaches to life.
The one thing the successful ones all have in common is they’re consistent.
Once you start expanding and have a team under you, I find that clear communication and respect go a long way. And you cannot have one without the other. I always go for people who are smarter or better than me in a specific field, which automatically means I have the utmost respect for how far they’ve developed their skills to get there.