What in the world is going on with explainer videos?

June 26, 2013
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Who doesn’t love to explain things? I know I do. I really like the challenge of transforming complex ideas into simple ones, providing a definition in a nutshell. Companies are striving to do the same with their products and services, making sure people understand what they do and what they provide… at a glance of their websites. How, one may ask?
Users can be quite impatient thesedays, they despise spending time reading through marketing blabbery, trying to figure out what your company actually does. Years ago, a popular tool to present complicated information quickly and clearly was the infographic. But the time has now come to take the world of infographics to the next level: video. Make that, EXPLAINER videos.
Explainer videos are short (usually ranging from one to three minutes) and are instructive web videos that businesses use to quickly explain what it is they do, and how they can solve their customer’s biggest problems. Being short in length, explainer videos are able to explain things quickly, therefore saving time of both the business and its audience. They are usually done with animations or cartoons, as it is an entertaining way to grab the viewers’ attention. They are different, original and this also allows for humour. And who doesn’t love a little cheekiness every now and then? It is through comedy and funny animations that people open their minds to new ideas…

You see, the key to a great explainer video is to conceive it as a conversational piece, making sure that the animation not only shows what the script says, but also complements it. This way, all the elements work together to communicate the message in the most efficient way.
Today, a significant number of startup companies rely on an overview video on their home page (hello Google and Facebook). The goal of the video is to answer all of the questions and concerns of your potential customers. According to Internet Retailer research, viewing a product video increases the likelihood of a purchase by 85%. Additional research shows that 52% of customers believe product videos give them more confidence in their purchase decisions. Video also increases email open rates and social sharing. Dropbox, Zappos and Shoeline are just a few of the companies increasing their conversion rates with explainer videos.
There are several stages involved in the creation of an explainer video. The process starts with understanding your product or service, the target audience, their challenges and emotional & rational factors that would make them want to buy. With all that information follows research and script development. A storyboard is then sketched. The third stage is voice over, where the artist narrates the script and credits the video with an audio. In the last and final stage, the storyboard is animated with the voice over. It is not as simple as it sounds, but luckily this is what we specialise in – so you don’t need to worry. Also, the structure of an explainer video may vary. One of my favourite (and most popular) ones is starting by pointing out a problem the viewer might identify with. Through witty comments (bear in mind funny DOES NOT mean annoying or obnoxious) the viewer can feel your empathy and see how much you getthe problem. Once that connection is made, you move on to focus on the problem’s main points, present a solution and validate it with stats, testimonials, and examples. Finally, you strike with a call to action, which is crucial in getting ROI from your videos.
Explainer videos will improve the SEO of your site, they will make your life easier when trying to explain what is it that you do and in case the media is interested, you will be more likely to get more coverage of your company with one of these bad boys. Not that we are calling journalists lazy, but who can be bothered spending time scrolling through a page trying to figure out what products or services a company offers?
Videos can be included in email signatures, start off video conference pitches, be shared by sales teams – the sky is the limit. In short, they can go well beyond your home page.
Now that I’ve explained what they are, allow me to add some suggestions:

  • Don’t try to make a viralvideo click here to see why
  • Prioritize your message and keep it short.
  • Quality matters. Unless you want to give the impression that your company is run from a college dorm room, do not attempt to grab your camcorder and record a video of your product. Production quality does matter. Get the specialists to draft a concise script, good design, clear visuals, and good quality audio. That’s why we are here, and believe me, users will be grateful.

And to share with you, here are some of my favourite examples….
Get More Traffic – How to increase web traffic and lead generation with web video
Rural Workforce Agencies
Ace Infotech
Present Tree

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Creativa provides complete video production and animation services for clients direct or for agencies nationwide, specialising in creating content that engages Aussie audiences. Working with local crews dotted around the country to capture live-action video footage, we manage all the coordination for you. Whatever type of video you need, we’ve got you covered.