Bourbon, baking, and an engineer: An interactive cooking video

by Jen Bergen |

The holidays are upon us. The lights are up on the tree, you’ve (hopefully) finished your gift shopping, and now all that’s left is to start preparing your holiday meal. Desert is always the best part, so we decided to make an Interactive cooking Video to show you how to make a festive pecan pie.

Our VP of Engineering, Jonathan Woodard, was so thrilled with the idea that he shared his family’s secret recipe for Bourbon Pecan Pie with us. With the recipe in hand, we went through every step to make the process of baking a homemade pie – crust and all – simple and fun. Not only did we test the code behind the video, we also tested the recipe (multiple times), so you can bet it’s the real deal (and that our bellies have been full of pie for the past few weeks).

Creating our first installment of “Baking with Jonathan” was not only a blast, but it was easy to create using Rapt Media’s video editor. In a matter of hours we were able to easily import videos and author an Interactive Video project that allows the user to choose their own path. And we completed the entire project, from pre-production to publish, in just three days.

Using Rapt Media’s patent pending Site Pairing technology, which required just a few lines of javascript code on the page, we gave the viewer the power to select the parts of the recipe that they want to see by simply clicking on the tabbed sidebar. For example, clicking on “Filling” will bring you to the part of the video where Jonathan explains how to make the filling.

Rapt Media’s unique interactivity allows the user to choose exactly what part they want to see. For example, if the viewer already bought a store-bought crust and doesn’t need to waste time watching an entire segment about making a homemade crust, the video brings the viewer to a choice point where they can either click on the “I already have a crust” button, or on the “Teach me how to make a crust” button. This experience creates a relationship between the video and the viewer, who then becomes more likely to continue watching instead of losing interest and closing the window. Like Jonathan says in his conclusion "And there you have it, my mamma's bourbon pecan pie. But because we worked on it together, now I feel like it's OUR bourbon pecan pie."

We had a great time shooting the first episode of “Baking with Jonathan,” and we think you’re really going to love this tech take on a traditional cooking/baking video. Let us know what you think in the comments below, and make sure to share the video with your friends on Facebook and Twitter. Bake your own Jonathan’s Special Bourbon Pecan Pie, and tweet a photo of it to us at @Rapt Media with the hashtag #BWJ. And be sure to sign-up for our newsletter, below in the footer, as we'll soon be revealing the full tech recipe of how we created this project – soup to nuts.

Check out our Baking with Jonathan Interactive Video and let us know what you think in the comments below.

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