The Ultimate Guide to Explainer Videos
It is a well-established strategy of digital marketers to use videos and hook the audience right off the bat.
41 percent are more likely to click on a video thumbnail than a text link.
Over 95 percent of people prefer to watch an explainer video to learn more about a product or service. Landing pages embedded with explainer videos convert 86 percent better than ones without it.
If you have still been on the border about explainer videos, then this is a sign that you should make them a permanent part of your brand’s video marketing strategy.
This definitive guide ‘explains’ everything you wanted to know about explainer videos including:
- Why use Explainer Videos in your video marketing strategy?
- Different types of Explainer Videos
- Elements of a good Explainer Video
- How to create effective Explainer Videos
- The best practices to follow for Explainer videos
- The right way to publish and market explainer videos
What is an Explainer Video ?
As the name suggests, explainer videos are short online marketing videos, combining both audio and visual elements that you can use to provide a quick summary of what your product or service can do. Such videos give a bird’ eye view of what’s on offer and how it can help to resolve the pain points of your customers, increase message retention, and nudges them closer to conversion.
Why use Explainer Videos in your video marketing strategy?
Here are some compelling stats to convince you why explainer videos are one the most dominant marketing tools right now:
- 45 percent of brands that employ video marketing techniques use high-quality explainer videos to promote their products or services.
- Explainer videos are 43 percent more persuasive than other video marketing tools available.
- 8 out of 10 customers consider explainer videos to be the perfect guide that explains the benefits of a new product or service and how it can simplify their lives.
- Landing pages with explainer videos have a 86 percent higher chance of converting.
The bottom line is simple — if you want to lure in your customers and keep them engaged, you will need something visually attractive that explains your product or service. This is precisely what explainer videos help you to achieve.
Moreover, it is even more critical for your business to use explainer videos if your competitors are not doing it yet. The unique communication style used by these videos to describe your business can enhance brand awareness, foster brand loyalty, and help you stay ahead of the competition.
Why are Explainer Videos so effective?
Now that you know about the utility of explainer videos, let’s understand what makes them click with the customers:
- They are easily shareable with others compared to a bulky brochure or e-book that talks about the uniqueness of your product. Remember that the human brain always craves visual content as it is more entertaining.
- With an explainer video, you can show the problem and offer the solution within a few minutes. Your customers can watch the product or service in action and go home with a solid takeaway. They can also process the visuals much faster compared to a sales representative giving them an in-person demonstration.
- Getting the maximum amount of information in the minimum amount of time is important for the new age customer who is always pressed for time. As explainer videos are usually under two minutes, they help save time and can be consumed on the go.
- Explainer videos employ creative storytelling techniques to show how a product or service works. As a result, they are much more attention-grabbing compared to other video formats such as one-on-one webcam videos or selfie videos.
Different types of Explainer Videos
There are numerous styles of explainer videos you can experiment with. Here are some of the house favorites:
2D Motion Graphics video
These types of explainer videos with motion graphics help you bring graphics to life, thanks to the animated effects. The photos and videos are short in a two-dimensional space and combined together sequentially to show motion. This is a popular style for corporate explainer videos and app demos.
Whiteboard Animation Video
This is a style of animated video making where the content appears to be narrated through hand-drawn visuals on a white background and supported via a voiceover. The animation provides an interactive visual experience to the audience, making these videos a powerful persuasion tool.
This style of explainer video can guide the audience through the process of using a complex product or service, such as mobile apps with multiple functionalities. It can be confusing to convey the value proposition of such offerings without a dedicated tutorial. Using tutorial-style explainer videos can help you clearly articulate what’s on offer and effectively deliver your message.
When you want to add more perspective to your subject, you can draw a three-dimensional object in a two-dimensional space. This lends a futuristic look to the videos and gives you a 3D feel at the cost of a 2D budget. Tech companies and blockchain apps prefer using isometric style as it helps to showcase a great amount of detailing without giving a cluttered appearance.
Animated infographic video
Infographic videos are perfect for conveying a vast amount of data to the audience. You can combine visuals with animations to get your message across more effectively.
Kinetic typography animation
This is an animation effect that combines motion and text to create moving text. Such a format is effective if your content is too text-heavy or contains large chunks of data. Moving text is also combined with catchy background music to make the videos feel even more compelling.
As the name suggests, this video style involves recording your screen when you want to show your product (such as a mobile or desktop app) in action. Such videos are comparatively easier to make as you can simply use the screen recording feature on your phone or browser.
These videos are created by hiring actors and using actually shot footage of them. Due to the presence of actors in flesh and blood, this style is extremely useful for connecting with the audience at an emotional level. Companies that sell customer-oriented products or services prefer using live-action video over other formats
Stop motion video
This is a highly sophisticated style of video making where a clay model is used and moved very little in each frame. Such a movement is repeated over time to create motion. While it is extremely attractive due to its unique presentation, it is also quite expensive and requires special equipment.
What kind of Explainer Videos work best for your brand?
When it comes to explainer videos, there’s no one-size-fits-all approach you can take. A format that may have been wildly successful for a brand may fail to achieve the same results for your business.
For instance, animated videos are one of the best formats you can opt for, as these videos are incredibly versatile and make room for insane customization. Travel, tech, banking, food, or automobiles — almost every industry can benefit from animated explainer videos.
A carefully designed animated explainer video can evoke the right emotions and directly appeal to the target audience. Animated videos are especially helpful for companies that want to showcase complex products or services — you can use the video to show the pain points and immediately offer a solution for it. Moreover, eye-catching visuals and catchy animations make these explainer videos hard to skip.
What are the elements of a good Explainer Video ?
Every explainer video that successfully grabs the attention of your target audience and delivers the desired results has these critical elements:
Wants to solve the problem
The goal of an explainer video is to communicate the details of your product or service to your prospects. That’s why the explainer video must have a solution-oriented approach — the audience should be able to relate to the problems shown in your explainer video and understand why your product or service is the solution they need.
Meant for the audience it is targeting
Picking an explainer video style that doesn’t match the audience profile or expectations can be a disaster. Always make sure that the style and tone of your videos are a perfect fit for the kind of audience you are interested in.
Has a strong call to action
Without a solid call to action, an explainer video will fail to provide you the strong conversions and sales you are dreaming about. Including the right call to action is essential if you want the audience to fall hook, line, and sinker for your product.
Doesn’t take up too much time for the audience
Time is a precious commodity. People are seldom enthusiastic about spending more than a couple of minutes to learn about a new product. The shorter the explainer video, the higher are your chances of impressing the audience.
The recipe for creating an amazing Explainer Video
Successful explainer videos cannot be created without a plan. Check out how you can make your secret sauce that will guarantee jaw-dropping explainer videos every single time:
1. Don’t begin unless you have a strategy
A clear strategy is crucial for creating explainer videos that your audience cannot afford to ignore.
So before you begin recording the explainer video, start by answering the following questions:
- What is the goal of your video?
- Which channels will you use for marketing the video?
- What is the level of understanding of the audience, and which style of video will work best?
2. The script matters
Writing the script for your explainer videos is a crucial part of the pre-production process. A watertight script is vital for setting the correct tone of your video and making the messaging more effective. Even if you have a great strategy and superb brief for your explainer video, there’s not much you can do without a solid script in your kitty.
So what makes a successful script? Start by highlighting the problem your customers are facing. Then talk about the solution by creating a story around your product or service. Highlight the specific features that are beneficial to your customers and finish strong with an eye-catching CTA that actually prompts them to take the desired action.
3. Voiceover matters
Unless you are shooting a live-action explainer video, adding a voiceover is non-negotiable. There are plenty of explainer videos in the market that never get noticed by the target audience due to the poor quality of voiceover. Make sure to not fall into the same trap — after all, audio elements are just as essential as the visual elements for adding a personal touch to the explainer videos and making them more appealing.
Pick a voice actor whose voice is compatible with your brand and target customers. Whoever you select should be able to showcase empathy so that your audience feels an instant connection while watching the video.
4. Don’t forget the sound design
A soundtrack that complements the content will make your explainer video emotionally more engaging. Don’t rush into picking a track — prepare a shortlist of tracks and listen to each of them a couple of times. Then decide on a track that matches the mood of your video.
5. Snip, snip, snip
The goal of your explainer video should be to keep the audience engaged right from the second they hit the play button. A cluttered video will not receive the same level of engagement. So never hesitate with your editing process — since the audience is giving you something as precious as time, make it worth their while.
6. Style and Design
Since your explainer video is essentially an extension of your brand, be mindful of the style you choose. Picking the appropriate style and design for your video is easy once you know what you wish to convey through your video.
For example, opting for an animated explainer video can be really engaging for the audience, especially if your brand personality is fun and quirky and you want to convey a message in a similar tone
How to publish and market your Explainer Videos
Once you have created an incredible explainer video, it is time to show it off to the world. A bit of strategic planning can go a long way in ensuring that your video gets noticed by the right set of audience. Publishing the explainer videos on your website is a no-brainer — everyone who visits your website will get to see the video and learn more about your product. It can also help you to improve your search engine rankings and boost conversion rates.
Apart from websites, you can feature them on your landing pages and blogs, use them as part of your email marketing efforts, or even embed them in social media posts on Facebook and Instagram. Landing pages with explainer videos report a lower bounce rate and also experience an increase in the average visit time by at least 2 minutes. Even mentioning the word video in the subject line of your email can boost the clickthrough rates by 65 percent.
Regardless of where you host it, ensure that the call to action is prominent so that the viewer knows about the next steps as soon as the video stops streaming.
Explainer videos are also effective when included in the sales pitch decks and tradeshow marketing materials as they are more attractive than text-heavy materials.
Best practices for creating Explainer Videos
If you want to make the most out of explainer videos, make sure to follow these tips:
1. Know the ideal length of your explainer video
There’s a reason why tech-savvy customers prefer video over text — videos have the potential to convey a vast amount of information (including complex ideas) in a short time. In fact, a one-minute-long video can be worth 1.8 Million words. So it’s essential to make every minute count. Usually, the sweet spot is between 2-3 minutes to ensure that the audience doesn’t lose attention.
2. Benefits are more important than features
Features are simply an added attraction for your products — how those features translate into tangible benefits for the customers will decide whether you will be able to make a sale.
Your target audience wants to know how your product or service can resolve the troubles that they are facing. That’s why you should make sure to shine the spotlight on the benefits and not fall into the trap of overemphasizing the features.
3. Never underestimate the power of CTA
A strong call to action at the end of your explainer video ensures that you don’t fall at the last hurdle. Your CTA should be persuasive so that the viewer is eager to take the desired action and convert.
Can you DIY Explainer Videos?
Like many things in life, business owners wonder if a DIY approach to video making is a better option, especially if budget is a constraint. But here’s the truth – even though you may save on costs, DIY explainer videos have several disadvantages :
1. Substandard quality
Since you are not a professional video maker, you will be tempted to use readymade explainer video templates available online. While these templates reduce the time it takes to create videos, they are not specifically tailored to your brand identity. As a result, such videos may not produce the same impact as a video made by a professional video production agency.
2. You don’t know where to begin
Unless you are working with a set of people who have experience in creating explainer videos, you may find it challenging to develop the right strategy. You may not be able to identify your video’s goals or pick a format that suits the type of product or service you are selling.
If you have come this far and are serious about creating an explainer video for your business, it’s time to get started. Once you implement the best practices and tips shared above, you can expect a great payoff from these videos.
But creating awesome videos is no cakewalk — so don’t waste your time looking for the perfect template you can use for DIY solutions. Brainstorm the message and ideas you want to convey, shortlist a few styles, and reach out to a team who can bring your idea to life and simplify even the most complex topics for your audience. Ultimately, you don’t just want a visually attractive explainer video — you want a video that delivers the results and helps you achieve your goals.