Edit Diva’s first year sees growth in staff and
added services for corporate and independents

It’s been a year since freelance editors Mindy Hilt and Karla Svatos opened post house Edit Diva, and while business has ebbed and flowed, they’ve grown enough to start expanding their services and adding a rep.

“It’s been a crazy year, a trial by fire, but it’s worked out really well and we’re definitely here to stay,” Hilt said.

The company is successful and paying for itself, said Hilt, “and we want to take it to the next level.”

They haven’t hired a full-time staff, but Hilt is in the process of hiring a sales rep, a part-time graphic designer has moved into their office, and she’s hired a bookkeeper?all jobs she was handling herself when they first opened shop.

Both partners brought with them a portfolio of loyal corporate and political consulting clients that formed the foundation of Edit Diva’s business.

“Looking at what has helped us the most in the past year, I realized we hadn’t spent much money marketing the company,” Hilt said. “So far [most clients] have been people we’d already been partnered with,” like direct sales marketing firm DSS, indie producer John Yaworksy of Two+One, and corporate producer Megan Vidis of Rainmaker Productions.

Hilt is about to start cutting comedian Len Austrevich’s directorial debut “Chasing Robert,” the second feature from Bad Penny Films. She also edited the first Bad Penny feature, Michael Fitzgibbons’ “Where It Gets You,” which Austrevich produced.

Edit Diva’s River West facility includes an Avid Adrenaline, a graphics workstation with Maya and After Effects, a voiceover booth, and a portable DV camera and laptop AVID Xpress package.

Edit Diva also offers DVD and CD-ROM authoring, compression, multi-media, and project management services, often in conjunction with Big Camera Chicago.

“I’m not allowed to say much about the future,” Hilt said. “But there’s a lot on the horizon in terms of re-branding and re-marketing the company, and continuing to build the alliances we have with the companies we work with to offer more to the end user.”

Edit Diva’s core post work has remained steady, but Hilt anticipated a shift in the kind of jobs coming down the road.

“There are so many emerging technologies and so many ways for corporations to communicate with their people,” she said. “There’s more and more web-based video, mobile device-based video, more multimedia, more interactive. Those kinds of things are coming, and they’re going to come fast, and we’re definitely ready for them.”

Hilt, from Kansas City, started her career in Austin, Texas television in the early ?90s, then spent several years editing infomercials for Florida’s Tricom Pictures. She was a staff editor for Sound/Video Impressions in Des Plaines for three years before going freelance.

Svatos is a Chicago native who was on staff at Mindsight and spent years freelancing for such clients as McDonald’s and Towers Productions. She continues to freelance. “She’s the best editor in town.”

Edit Diva is at 935 W. Chestnut, Suite 303. Call 312/666-EDIT or see www.editdivamedia.com.

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