TECHNOLOGY

Lights, Camera, Action, and A.I.: How MotionElements Enables You To Create Better Videos

The Singaporean start-up launched a platform for video creators to connect, create, and earn

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BY Marishka M. Cabrera - 30 May 2017

PHOTO CREDIT: TSUNEOMP @ MOTIONELEMENTS

Nowadays, video is king in the realm of content creation. And while there is a wealth of material available to video producers, there remains a dearth when it comes to Asian content.

MotionElements was created by Mark Sun, Joanne Chua, and Sean Quek out of a “real and desperate need” they felt in the market, with a vision of how the sharing economy will disrupt video production. Founded in 2010, the Singapore-based start-up is an A.I.-driven video marketplace for video creators to buy and sell digital assets—stock video, music, After Effects templates, and Apple Motion/Final Cut Pro templates.

Some 15 years ago, Sun and Chua began a video post-production business, and through the years, clients were demanding better quality content, but with a lower budget and shorter time frame.

“We needed an accessible, high-quality, and affordable 24/7 ‘supermarket’, but there was no marketplace to purchase stock videos, and more specifically, video footage with Asian faces, layered video elements, and video templates,” Chua says.

Their video-maker friends were also faced with the same problem. “We found Asia home to exceptional talents in video creation. Unfortunately, these creators have limited exposure with few or no channels or platform to market their creations,” she adds.

A Localized Experience for Asian Buyers and Sellers

Currently working on business expansion, MotionElements completed a pre-Series A fundraising from such investors as KK Fund (Singapore), Incubate Fund (Japan), and 500 Startups (Silicon Valley).

Chua says they are focused on creating a localized experience for Asian buyers and sellers in Southeast Asia, and in countries like Japan, South Korea, Taiwan, and Hong Kong. MotionElements is targeting freelance video producers, crowdsourced video creators, YouTube vloggers, marketing professionals, digital web professionals, and independent production companies. This segment has given the company a “great start” because of its fast adoption.

“[O]ur platform gives them the biggest boost—to create good videos quickly without needing big budgets,” says Chua, adding that the platform also offers them a viable way to easily monetize on their video creations.

And while there are other stock media platforms in the market, Chua says what sets MotionElements apart is the technology and a localized experience through language options and the creative assets themselves. The company uses machine learning and artificial intelligence for search features like AI VisualSearch, AI AudioSearch, Object Recognition, Auto Categorization, and Automagical Metadata Translation.

Company data shows it has around 60,000 registered members, 6,000 video contributors, and 200,000 monthly active users.

Creatives On The Rise

According to Chua, the company has been doubling its inventory every year, with some two million creative assets—making it one of the largest video sites in Asia. To ensure a steady flow of inventory on the site, MotionElements partners with large contributors in local markets and offers an A.I.-driven, easy-to-use asset contribution process. All the partners need to do, Chua says, is to upload their content, and in the backend they have an A.I.-driven metadata engine to provide object recognition, keywording, and categorization—thus saving them time and energy.

“We believe creative works are best accomplished by the people best at it—the creatives. We are part of the video creation ecosystem to provide support to our creative professionals and artists,” Chua says.

The company does not employ in-house artists because, Chua says, they “do not believe in second-guessing the market needs and trends.”

What the company needs to do, however, is to educate users on how to use the latest A.I. tools in the platform to speed up their search. The company has also launched new product lines, such as VR 360 and animated GIFs for online media usage, that will require the team to constantly refine the experience.

For the moment, the company is looking at extending product lines to include complementary products and to offer better matching and utilization features.

“We want to go beyond helping people make videos. We want to help people make better videos and use videos in more beneficial ways. We are building platforms that leverage AI to assist people to make videos, and harness big data for various video analysis,” Chua says.