Snagit is a great screen capture tool but not a lot of people realise that it is also a great tool to create visual guides. In this video tutorial, I show you how you can create them quickly and easily with Snagit's intuitive infographic templates.
How to Easily Create How-To Guides with Snagit Templates
At the start of this year, we made a pretty big change here at Dotto Tech. We started using the TechSmith suite of tools to produce our YouTube videos. Now, by the TechSmith tools I'm talking about, we're recording this and editing this video right now in Camtasia. We're using TechSmith video review as a part of our editing process to work with, with our different team members. And I have increasingly being using Snagit to help me create content, not just for the YouTube channel, but also for our course content and for the different webinars that I deliver. And I have to tell you, using Snagit has been one of the real joys of this year because I have discovered so much more that Snagit does than I anticipated would be the case when I started to use it more. And it caused me to think I had a bit of a pivot.
I think that a lot of us under utilize or kind of appreciate what Snagit brings to the table. And the reason is it's not your fault. It's the reason is that we've always defined Snagit as a utility. We've never said it's an app. We've never given it the do of being a full blown app, but instead we've looked at it as a utility and that's understandable because it lives in the utility tray. And we typically use it for quick little things, but it has potential, it has potential to do oh, so much more. And that is what we are going to explore today on Dotto Tech.
Steve Dotto here. How the heck can do on this fine day. And as promised today, we're going to try and give Snagit it's due. And this is one of those applications that has, as I say, deleted me, it has it as I have started to use it more and dive into more of the features. I've discovered a few new processes that we're able to take advantage of in our day-to-day business, that weren't there before, that are really beneficial. So I'm going to walk you through kind of that discovery process and show you in a little more detail, the depth of the sorts of things that you can use Snagit for. And specifically, I'm talking about using Snagit in this particular case for content creation, for creating tutorials and step-by-step guides that you can use in all in a whole wide variety of ways within your business.
And it was a delight, as I say, to discover this within Snagit, but before we begin in the spirit of full disclosure, I need to thank our friends at TechSmith for their general contribution, making this particular video possible. So this video is brought to you by the good folks at TechSmith. Let us dive into it. Let's begin and unpack this concept that we look at Snagit as a utility, and I am presenting the premise that it is actually an app. And I think the biggest reason most of us use it, think of it as a utility is I think typically we just use it as a utility. We just use it for simple screen capture for the most part, but also where it lives and how we invoke the, we invoke the process in the Mac. It lives up here in the very top of Snagit is right there available to us within with the other utilities in the top menu bar and in windows, it's exact same thing except that lives in the bottom utility tray.
And when we use Snagit, this is what we see when we open Snagit. And we decided that there's something on our screen. We want to capture. We open Snagit. And I don't even know if we even think anymore about the fact that the wonderful fact that regardless of what we can see on our screen, we can use Snagit to capture it, to utilize it and to repurpose it. So when we open Snagit, we are, we are brought into this. We are brought into the capture window, allowing us to choose if we want to capture video or audio or in all in one document or just the region. Most of us probably just never even leave this particular menu. Same with capture the region. We click capture it, converts into our familiar crosshairs. We highlight whatever it is that we want to capture. And then we release the mouse and it captures that document.
And then it brings us into the Snagit editor, allowing us to edit that document and to start to mark it up so that we can share it, or we can just store it. And we can repurpose this any way we want here along the top. We've got a series of different tools that allow us to do everything from blurring out a sensitive information that you might not want to send different arrows, that we can use to identify things that we want to point out within any document. So you've got lots of different, simple markup features. And for many of us, we never get beyond this level of using Snagit. We use it to capture something on the screen, we mark it up to communicate something. Then we copy and paste it or send this as a document to somebody else within our team so that they can identify exactly what it is we're referring to.
Or maybe we use this graphic in a presentation or some other way, but this is pretty much where our exploration of Snagit ends at this point, just using it as a capture tool. And indeed it is a phenomenal capture tool. But if we look over here on the upright upper right-hand side, we have some other options. We have a create menu, which we will be diving into in detail in a few moments. And we have a library option. Now I want to spend a few minutes with you and unpack this library feature, because if you haven't explored it, your mind will be blown. And even if you have explored it, I think we might be able to show you some new ways and open your eyes to some different opportunities using the library. So essentially, what is the Snagit library? It's a digest or database of all of the screen captures that you've done using Snagit.
They're all here. Now, typically speaking, we create a screen capture, we share it, and then we forget about it, which is fine. There it's, it's great for simple, quick communications, but there are other times that you go back to the same document multiple times or the same page and do the same capture over and over again, because you want to share this information multiple times. You, if you go back into your digest, you can find all of those captures, but I don't think you want to use it in that kind of happenstance nature saying, oh, I think I might've captured something in the past. Let me go find it. Instead. If when you capture images, you are thinking about the fact that they are now in a library. You can start to classify them and do a few modifications to the, to these to these images as you capture them so that you can repurpose them later on.
They, instead of becoming a useful little, a, a useful convenience to communicate something at the moment, they become an asset that you can use over and over again. And you can start to build upon, allow me to kind of dive into that a little bit deeper. We see here that we've got just basically a timestamp of each capture that we've done. We can sort by the date that they were created, the date they were modified, or we could also sort by the name or size, and you can change the name of any one of these, of the different screen captures you've got, but you also have here the ability to be able to search on the different images that you've captured, including by type or, and this is just a stroke of genius by the application that you captured it from. So if I know I need to get a screen capture that I'd done within Ecamm live, I can just go to my Ecamm live screen, captures and say, yeah, this is the menu that I wanted to capture.
I can remember it. I want to share it again. So this becomes really powerful. And as far as being a productivity tool, it becomes a huge time-saver because you don't have to relaunch the app, go into Snagit loop, pull down the menu, get to the screen. You want to do capture it again and go through that entire process. Instead, you can just go and you can select it from the library. And if you need to be even more organized, you can add tags to each one of these different documents or images that you've captured so that you can sort them even more with w with, with greater speed and accuracy. And it's really gonna come down at that point there to how much you fold using Snagit's library feature into your own personal productivity system and how you save images and how you think about how you're going to repurpose those images as you move on.
So the library itself very powerful. It makes it really easy for you to share information, even archival information of stuff that you've captured, but they have this other button here called create, which is really the star of today's video in the create menu you can take, and you can create either a simple little video or an image from any of the images that you've used up to this point. And well, I should just go into it and show you exactly what it looks like. Creating an image from a template means that we can create these basic step graphics, step instructions using screen captures that we've done. And this is the place that Snagit has changed my business to a certain extent. When I do tutorials, I would typically make videos of everything and walk people step-by-step through different processes and the videos and videos are great, but they're time-consuming for people to watch there.
Some simple repeating processes that I want to teach people to do that are far better explained using graphics, but I would never think of creating an infographic myself of a step-by-step process, because that would be very labor intensive, not so fast Dotto, because you can use, I can use this. I can use these templates, creating a series of screen captures and using them as a basis for creating instructional or step-by-step graphics. This is a bit of a game changer. If you have this type of information to communicate. So let me walk you through. Step-By-Step the process involved in creating step-by-step instructions within staggered, let's create a really practical and useful document right now. Let's create a document that shows people how to turn off the autofocus on their webcams. In this, the setup is this is we always have guests on, on our different broadcasts and it drives me crazy.
I imagine it might drive you crazy too, when it gets there's a guest, or when there's a person who makes a video, even if you're on a video conference with them and their focus is constantly changing. It's the autofocus is racking in and out on their webcam as they move in and out because they have autofocus turned on and it's changing the focus from time to time. And it just it's sloppy. And it just bothers me. So when I send out an invitation to people, what I'd like to be able to do is I like to say, would you please disable your autofocus before you jump on the call so that we don't have that issue. So I could do a video for them, which would be a little bit time-consuming or I'm going to create a little PDF document, which is the process of disabling autofocus using the most popular webcams Logitech webcams.
Let's do it right now. So the process is, this is I've got the, I have the, the tool called camera settings, the logic tech camera controls open here. Now, if I want to make a step-by-step tutorial with it, what I want to do is I want to capture the series of steps that they take. So if I open stag it, I can choose to capture a region and click capture, and it will auto sense the window that I'm trying to capture, as soon as I put the cross air in and it will allow me to capture it. And what I want to do first is I want to tell him that I did to switch first of all, from standard to lives widescreen. So I'm going to click once, and that's going to create a capture, which is this image here. And I'm going to then create an infographic that says, I want you to click on widescreen right here.
And that is step one. I'm going to do this. I'm going to go step one, because they all, we also have these very cool step graphics and put that right there. Step one, click on widescreen. Ready to go, ready to move on to the next step. Oh, by the way, I let me digress for a moment. If my different options that you see here at the very top of the screen are different than your options that you have within Snagit. That's because this is a an editable toolbar. You can customize this toolbar with all of the different features that are built into Snagit. You can incorporate any of these different menu items. So I've put the menu items into it that I use the most often, which include let me just say done here, sorry, which for me include blurring and the step graphics option is all the things that I use a lot.
So they're all available to meet right here. So let me, there we go. So let's, we've got this one captured, let's move on to the next image. And then I rinse and repeat the process, capturing the additional screens pointing at each individual switch that I want them to click on or a menu that I want them to click on until I have created the, the graphics that I need in order to convey exactly what it is I'm trying to share. And in this particular case, there's going to be three different images to walk them through the process of turning off auto-focus. And we can see the three images now here in the bottom tray. Now, the next thing that I want to do is I want to create the document that has all of these step graphics within it. So let's go and let's create a new image from template.
Now, Snagit ships with a whole series of templates that are available to you for free. But if you buy the TechSmith assets, one of the TechSmith assets packages, you can even access some more. If we want to add more templates, you click on download more and they will bring you to the free ones. And also to the ones that are part of the, a, that are part of the TechSmith assets. And I have a license. So I'm going to go in and I'm going to take a look and see exactly which ones are available. So you can see they're identified, the free ones are identified and the premium ones are identified as well. And I like, I kind of like that. Look there with the colored banner. Let's choose, let's choose that one. Let's download that. And we're going to open it in Snagit. And here we have it available to us inside of Snagit.
So I am going to create my step graphic using that template. Now, all of these different parts of the template, we can edit, we can change the colors. We can add text, but this is the magic of creating the step graphics this way is we go down and we choose the, the screen grabs that we've done. And we drop them in the order that we want to use them 1, 2, 3. So we started to create our document. Now, since we captured the exact same aspect ratio on all of the images, they are all not quite perfectly sized for the windows that we have within the template, but that's not unusual. Seldom, are you ever going to capture something that's going to fit perfectly, but by double clicking on it, we have the ability to move the image within the frame, or even resize the image should we choose to?
So I'm going to position it right here. And I would type in click on the widescreen. I would type will actually let me just do that. Let's do it right now. Okay. So you can enter all of the instructions and I'm going to double click on this one and I'm going to make sure that they see the menu that I want them to click on. And we go to the last one. And once again, we're going to adjust where it is in that, in that frame. And then I could go through and I can type each one, each type in directions for each step at a title at a subtitle. Then we can take this entire document and we can save it. And when we save it, we can save it as a JPEG image. We can save it as a PDF document, which is absolutely perfect for sharing these sort of documents.
I'm going to save this as a PDF and let's have a quick look. So there's the PDF document that we can use to share. So you can make this a downloadable document. You can include it in an email. I think you see that there is probably no easier way to create step-by-step instructions and you can be capturing entire screens. Like I am for this particular camera settings, or you could be capturing menus within an application. You could be capturing mobile screens and then importing them. There are so many different ways that you can create content with this, but it's the most flexible and easy way to create instructional infographics that I know of when I say Snagit is more than a utility, the proof is in the pudding. There are plenty of screen capture utilities on the market and including many, many free ones. There are no other screen capture apps that I know of the way that Snagit works.
It's so convenient. So quick for us to capture any quick image. The library gives us the ability to be able to repurpose those images and recycle them. And they also have the ability for us to be able to create new and improved graphics, instructional graphics, as a result of all of the different captures that we've made with a slight amount of editing and the judicious judicious use of some templates. I am a big fan, and I think you will be too. If you start to use it, it might even for you do what it's done for us, which is change your process, change your thinking process and how you communicate things and streamline things within your organization because of the, because of the clarity that it imparts well, that's it. I hope that you found today's video to be useful looking forward to your comments. And if you do create your own step-by-step graphics, share a link. Let me see exactly what it is you're creating is in Snagit. I would love to see, and I would love to know that we're having an impact on you as well with that. I thank you so much for tuning in, make sure that you subscribe to this channel, share with your friends who might find value in it until next time I am Steve Dotto, have fun, storming the castle.
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