The Anatomy Of A Great Explainer Video
Updated: Oct 11, 2021
Video has become such a powerful sales and marketing tool that many companies now use them as the centerpiece of their sales strategy.
Have you ever seen those videos that explain what a company does in about 30 seconds? You know the ones. They show people using their product and they have fun music playing in the background and it's just so darn catchy. Well, those are called explainer videos.
This method of marketing is amazing because not only do you get to tell your brand story, or speak to a product benefit but it also leaves a memorable impression on potential customers at the same time. So if you're interested in increasing customer engagement through video content then an explainer video may be for you!
But what is an explainer video? What are its benefits, and when should you use one in your sales and marketing strategy? This blog post will answer those questions. We'll go over what is needed for a great explainer video, the different types of animations you could use in it and finally when is the right circumstance for an explainer video.
What is an explainer video?
An explainer video is a short, informative video that tells you what a company does and why its products or services are worth your time. These videos can be used in sales and marketing strategies to increase conversion rates of prospects into customers.
Explainer videos are a great way to explain your product or service in an engaging and entertaining manner.
They can be used for anything from introducing a new company, explaining how something works, or teaching people about the benefits of using your product vs theirs. The best explainer videos can condense what could take hours of explaining into minutes.
There are many terms for this type of video, but the general idea is that it's a short video used to explain your product or service in an entertaining way. There are so many ways to create these types of videos, which is why they're so popular. You can use them on social media channels, at trade shows, in email campaigns and more!
Some common types of explainer videos include:
Animated with actors
Video blog post (vlog, YouTube) format
Most importantly explainer videos are useful for providing more information about a product or service that's not easily explained through words on a page. They are short, concise, and engaging. You can watch them at anytime on your phone, tablet, laptop or TV screen.
What makes a good explainer video?
You're probably wondering what makes a good explainer video. We'll give you the quick and dirty answer: they make your business or product easy to understand for customers that might not be as knowledgeable about your industry.
A lot of people think explainer videos are just a trend in corporate video but they've actually been around in ad campaigns for a while. One of the most famous explainer style messaging campaigns was when Apple made their famous Get A Mac Campaign. They've been popular because of how useful they can be for businesses who want to increase conversions on their website or social media campaigns with compelling content.
A good explainer video should focus on the benefits and features of your product or service, and provide a personal touch by including your company's story. With the right sales copy and animation styles, an explainer video can attract and convert prospects to sales inquiries and sales.
Some marketers use them as a "teaser" video before their sales video - this is why it's important that you choose an appropriate animation or shooting style for your sales video as well as your explainer video. So they don't feel disjointed in your presentations.
What an explainer video is not: it is not a sales video, so if your marketing material contains product demonstrations or sales pitches - you should be looking into making that as an animated sales video or demo video instead.
Some companies have used animated explainer style animations for their training videos which can also be an effective use case.
Explainer videos can be used in conjunction with long presentations. When used correctly, can serve as a way to break up the monotony of a long power point style presentation.
Next time you're working on a powerpoint presentation, and are worried about holding your audience's attention, consider making short 10 to 30 second animated explainers. Each having a main character or theme tied to various points sprinkled throughout your presentation.
Craft your presentation slides to further enhance the character journey you have created. If you think outside the box you can make your next corporate presentation memorable for your audience.
Things to consider when making your explainer video
Know your audience - Before you begin, understand what your target customer looks like, how they behave, what they value, their motivations for buying the product, as well as their objections to buying it.
The script for an explainer video should be kept short and informative. It should convey what your business is about in a concise manner that won't lose the attention of an audience. You can add humor, but make sure it's relevant to your brand or sales pitch.
It's important to keep the script conversational and lighthearted. Avoid sales speak and don't write like a robot. Your video should not be longer than two minutes, otherwise people will lose interest very quickly.
The best scripts tell a story through the lens of a protagonist's problem, and how your product or service provides a solution to their dilemma. By doing this you help your prospect empathize with the solution your product provides.
The best way to know if your script is good enough is by reading it aloud. This will help you identify issues before you hire talent and start recording. Reading the script aloud may also help you identify parts of your script that can be edited.
Include a call to action at the end of the video that is clear and concise.
The visual style you choose will depend on the tone of your sales and marketing strategy.
Animated character animation is one way to go. The right animation can be a great way to highlight personality traits, dress up characters or even create scenes to help tell an effective story.
Another example would be to use actors to portray characters that act out scenarios driving the point you're trying to make in the video.
There are many different types of visuals that can be used in an explainer video such as graphs, charts, diagrams, illustrations, photos etc… and these can be incorporated in a variety of ways.
The type of visual depends on what you want the viewer to understand about your product or service, the company brand standards and style guides, your budget and resources that are available to help execute the vision.
You may choose to record a VO (voice over) for your video or let the characters do the talking or even combining the two.
If you're animating your video record the VO prior to the animation process to sync your characters lips to the voice or you may do that via a scratch track at first and record the VO later. A voice actor's job is crucial in selling the story providing voices for animated characters and narrations.
We often record a scratch track for our video first and let the video go through a few rounds of edits before we lock in the final voice over.
The voice actor will provide the "voice" of presenters in sales videos, explainer videos, integrated marketing videos, and web commercials. Since the right voice can make or break the story being told and the emotion that's being conveyed usually this role is best outsourced to professionals in the voice acting industry. Many work from home studios, and since technology in audio gear has advanced so much the right VO talent will also act as engineer which can lead to very quick turn around times with very high quality results.
Elevate your animations
A great way to drive home a particular point is using charts, infographics and other animations that you can bring into your scene. You might be able to import these into your animation software so that you can further customize your video.
A production company that specializes in animated explainers can take graphs and charts made in one software like PowerPoint or Canva, animated characters in another software like Vyond, backgrounds created in a software like Procreate and combine all elements in an editing software like DaVinci Resolve, Premiere Pro or After Effects. By combining all these elements you will have a truly customized video message ready to share with the world.
Sound effects and background music are crucial in making an explainer video more engaging. Background music helps set the tone of the video, while sound effects can help to convey emotion or artistic style. Without the right sound effects and music even a video with strong visuals and a great voice can seem flat.
Including the right music will help you keep your audience engaged throughout the video, while also helping to convey emotion – whether it be excitement or sadness, happiness or mystery. A great song can set the tone for your sales pitch as well as make your videos more memorable.
Sound effects are important because they help tell the story of your video and convey information to your audience. Whether you plan on using sound effects throughout or just at certain points, it’s crucial that they fit with what is going on in the sales pitch so as not to take away from its message and meaning.
How to start making explainer animations?
There are plenty of online and offline tools that you can use to build out either a whiteboard or character driven animation. Many have characters with pre-made expressions and backdrops to help tell your story. This cookie cutter approach may not be suitable for many brands however and a lot if time and resources will need to go into it even with these tools.
Production companies can help you make a high-quality, engaging video
The process starts by discussing what you want the video to achieve. From there, they'll come up with an idea that best fits your needs and budget
A production company specializing in explainer animations can help customize your video to meet the individual needs of each business. The right partner can build a script, create characters, props and backdrops to customize your desired message.
The sales and marketing strategies you use should be tailored to the type of business you have. Different sales tactics will work for different types of businesses, so it's important that your sales plan aligns with the goals and objectives of your company.
Animated & live action explainer videos are great tools for explaining what products do, how they work, what makes them different from competitors' offerings - essentially anything else about your business which is hard to get across through words alone!
As a rule, however, most experts recommend having an explainer video as part of any sales strategy - especially if you're launching a new product or service.
If done right, these videos can attract more prospects into viewing your sales pitch by demonstrating how their problem is solved in just a few minutes or less instead of forcing them to watch those long winded presentations we discussed earlier which seem never-ending at times!
So what are some tips on creating a great explainer video? The script needs to be concise, informative and sales oriented. The video style needs to be consistent with your brand or sales pitch. Voice over talent is crucial in selling the story. Sound effects and background music are important for setting tone of voice as well as emotional impact on viewers which can increase conversions rates dramatically!
If you need help in training, sales, and marketing video content schedule a call with us and let's get started working towards helping your company tell a better story.