8 Examples of Explainer Videos and Best Practices to Make Your Own
According to studies, 85% of people are more likely to purchase a product after they have seen an accompanying overview, which is where explainer videos come in handy.
If you have a product, service, or business concept that you need to introduce in a succinct way that your customers will fully understand, an explainer video is what you need.
It’s a faster and more effective way to communicate value to potential customers and it provides you with an easy point of entry for those in your audience who don’t know about your product or service.
Explainer videos can be especially useful for startups and brands in highly competitive niches. They are also great for use in products that require additional context for customers to gain a full understanding of the product, service, or business model.
Read the rest of this article to discover more about explainer videos, including examples of some of the best ones from popular brands. We’ll also take a look at some best practices for how you can create your own killer explainer videos.
If you’re ready, let’s get started!
What Is An Explainer Video?
An explainer video is a short video that presents or explains the product, service, or idea of a business or brand. It can be focused on a single aspect of the company or the entire business as a whole.
For instance, it can be used to explain a small part of your service or a new product feature. Alternatively, it can be used to showcase your brand story timeline.
You can also put together small webinars and use them to update employees to changes in the company or teach new tasks.
Either way, an explainer video is highly effective in clarifying your message and it makes it easier for your audience to retain information.
All of this ultimately leads to an increase in your conversion rates and a boost in sales.
Types of Explainer Videos
There are different types of explainer videos. Some styles are more popular than others, and each has its own benefits for brands.
Here’s a quick look at a few of the most popular explainer video styles.
Whiteboard Animation Explainer Videos
A whiteboard video is one in which the animation is hand-drawn on a whiteboard. Each scene is erased to make way for the next one. This format of explainer video has grown in popularity thanks to its extremely low cost and ease of operation. Also, it has fewer complexities, making it one of the most affordable options available to brands.
Illustrated Explainer Videos
This has become a popular trend, and a lot of explainer videos use 2D animation in fun color combinations to visualize their story. But, 2D animation illustrated videos often look very similar to each other which means you have to put in a lot of effort to differentiate yours from all the rest.
3D Animated Explainer Videos
2D explainer videos can provide you with rich, lifelike interaction. But, 3D animation is better. The difference between the two is the type of movement and depth of field in the video. You’ll see a few amazing 3D explainer videos in the examples below.
Live-Action Explainer Videos
A live-action explainer video features real people, actual products, and real situations. It looks more like a short film or TV commercial. The concept is ideal for brands that are looking to display their human characters in order to connect with their audiences and build more personal relationships with potential customers
Live-Action and Animation Hybrid Explainer Videos: Another growing trend is to use live-action explainer videos with elements of animation mixed in. These types of videos offer brands a great way to appeal to wider audiences and they come in a wide range of styles – from simple presentation slides with a bit of animation included, to full-fledged blended/fusion designs.
Screencast Explainer Videos: A screencast explainer video is simply a digital recording of the screen (phone, computer, etc.) accompanied by a voiceover explanation of the process. Screencasts are perfect for showing how tools, apps, websites, software, etc. work and are perfect for brands that need to help customers quickly learn how to make the most of their new product or service.
Stop Motion Explainer Videos: Stop motion animation uses real-life objects that are photographed numerous times over, each time making small adjustments or increments which are then combined into a single video sequence. This creates the illusion of continuous motion. These types of videos are not easy to produce. They take a lot of time, which ultimately means higher costs if you want to create a convincing illusion of an object moving on its own.
Kinetic Typography Explainer Videos
Kinetic typography refers to “moving text”. It’s an animation technique that conveys ideas to viewers using a combination of text and movement. It requires no sound and works particularly well for mobile viewing. These types of videos can also make content more vivid (and ultimately more engaging) for viewers. Best of all, they are among the least expensive to produce.
Examples of Awesome Explainer Videos
Regardless of the style you choose, your explainer video should do the following three things:
- Explain your product, service, business, concept, etc.
- Illustrate how it fits with the viewer’s problem/challenge/goal.
- Convince the viewer that yours is the best possible solution.
Here, we take a look at 10 of the most awesome explainer videos out there. They are in no particular order, but you’ll find one or more for each of the different types of explainer videos outlined above.
1. Riverhead Books
Whiteboard Animation Explainer Video
2D Illustrated Explainer Video
3D Animation Explainer Video
4. Dollar Shave Club
Live-Action Explainer Video
5. Move Guides
Live-Action and Animation Hybrid Explainer Video
6. Sales Finance
Screencast Explainer Video
7. Xbox 360
Stop Motion Explainer Video
8. Matthew Rogers – Language
Kinetic Typography Explainer Video
6 Steps to Creating Your Own Explainer Videos
Listed below are the steps to follow to help you produce powerful explainer videos in a snap.
Step #1: Define Your Goals for the Video
Before you can decide what explainer video style is right for your business, you must first define what you want to achieve.
For instance, do you want to:
- Increase your sales
- Boost your conversion rate
- Launch a campaign for generating leads
- Teach something new to your employees
Whatever your goals, the best way to achieve them will be to get to know your audience deeply so you can produce content that resonates with them.
While researching your audience, ask yourself the following questions:
- Who is your ideal customer?
- What specific problem does your product or service solve?
- How does your product/service work?
- Why is yours better than the competitors?
- How do you measure that value?
- What tone best fits with your target audience?
Answering these questions will help to focus and guide your creativity as you complete the rest of the steps.
Step #2: Choose Your Video Style and Production Method
Your next step is to decide on which video style and production method you want to use.
Your choice of video style will depend on a variety of factors, including your goals, the cost of producing the video, your audience preferences, and so on.
Some types of explainer videos are cheaper to produce, some are more engaging than others. These are things you have to compare for yourself before deciding which is best.
For instance, animated explainer videos are significantly more engaging, but they take longer and are more expensive to produce than screencast or whiteboard videos.
With regards to production methods, your options include:
- Creating the explainer video yourself using a video editor or use webinar software and repurpose the recording later to give it an authentic feel
- Hiring a freelancer or agency to do it for you
- A combination of the two (e.g. writing your own script and recording the voiceover, and then hiring someone to animate it).
Your decision will depend on the amount of time and/or money you have to invest into creating your video, as well as the technical skills or experience that you possess.
If you have limited funds and need to create a video from scratch, you may need to spend more time learning the ropes and exploring the right tools and resources required.
Step #3: Create the Video Script
As a general rule, explainer videos shouldn’t be too long. 30 to 90 seconds will do. In word count, this translates to about 200 words.
Some particularly complicated products, services, or concepts can go over a minute, but shorter is always best.
In the allocated time, your video should do the following:
- Grab the audience’s attention within the first 10 seconds
- Identify the problem faced by customers
- Introduce the brand, product, or service as the best possible solution
- Briefly explain how it works (focusing on benefits and not features)
- Give viewers a compelling call to action for the next steps to take
Here’s an example of an explainer video script from ZANKME which covers all the steps outlined above:
Step #4: Record the Voiceover, Music, and Audio Effects
If you are making an animated or screencast explainer video, the next step is for you to record the script.
Make sure you use a high-quality microphone like the Blue Yeti USB Microphone, FIFINE USB Microphone, or the Tonor PC Microphone.
If you’d rather hire a professional voice actor, you’ll be able to find the best talent on websites like:
Make sure you choose music that sets the tone and pace in a way that evokes the types of emotions and reactions you want from your audience. You can get tons of music and sound effects from places like:
- Audio Jungle
- Free Sound
If you have no experience in voiceover and music, then it’s a good idea to hire a professional voiceover artist to ensure you end up with a well-done video that will convert better.
Step #5: Produce the Video
If you are a beginner with no experience in producing your own explainer videos, there are plenty of tools online designed to help you create stunning videos.
A lot of them have prebuilt templates to choose from, as well as an easy-to-use drag-and-drop editor to simplify the process of producing your video.
Some of the most popular explainer video software options include:
When choosing the software you want to use, make sure to assess total costs and avoid variable expenses if possible. Many video editors and production software include add-ons and premium features that can quickly add up.
If you’re purchasing software-as-a-service (SaaS), you can look forward to buying the exact same software over and over. To maintain fixed expenses, look for software that you only need to buy once and which comes pre-packaged with all the tools you need.
Step #6: Publish Where it Counts
Now, it’s time to launch your explainer video. You must publish it in places where your potential customers will see it.
Here are a few tips:
- Embed on Your Website: Embed the video on your homepage, “About” page, “How It Works” page and special landing pages for conversions.
- Choose a Video Host: You can use any one of the many popular video hosting sites, like YouTube, Wistia, Vimeo Pro, and Vidyard.
- Use It in Your Marketing: You can also use your explainer video as part of your digital marketing strategy by integrating it into your marketing materials, including your blog, newsletters, email signatures, social media channels, and events.
Best Practices for Creating Your Own Explainer Videos
Now that you’ve seen a few examples of great explainer videos to inspire you, here are some best practices to follow when making your own standout videos.
Always Have a Video CTA
A call to action is an essential element for your explainer video.
Remember, your video needs to do three things, explain your product or service, show viewers how it helps solve a problem for them, and convince them that your product or service is the best solution available.
Once you’ve done that, you can nudge viewers to take the next step with a compelling call to action.
Use Software to Optimize the Process
When creating explainer videos, there is a sequence of tasks with a repeatable pattern of activity. You must manage workflow with staff and use the right tools to plan, execute, and track work in order to keep your team focused, improve productivity, and eliminate bottlenecks.
This way, it’s more likely that you will end up with a high-quality video that will help your business boost online visibility and increase conversions.
Find Search Demand with Keyword Research Tools
One of the secrets to getting great results with your explainer videos is to conduct thorough keyword research to determine search demand.
After all, you don’t want to create a video that isn’t aligned with important keywords in your business and industry, otherwise, it won’t be found by your target audience online.
I hope the examples in this article have sparked some curiosity and inspiration for you to discover your own creative side.
Follow the steps outlined here to create your own outstanding explainer videos that will bring you more conversions and sales.
Over to you. Which style of explainer videos resonates with you the most? Share your thoughts in the comments below!
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- 8 Examples of Explainer Videos and Best Practices to Make Your Own - October 12, 2021