Everything You Need to Know About Explainer Videos [Complete Guide]

The term ‘explainer video’ is very much self-definitive and self-explanatory. 

To put it in the simplest of words, an explainer video is a video that:

  • Does a great job of ‘explaining’ a thing (a start-up, a new feature, a new product etc.)
  • Is short and to-the-point 
  • Is made in order to leave viewers better informed at the end of it
  • Blends in well with the rest of the marketing strategies of the company/business 
  • Is memorable, impactful and easily shareable 

 

The heady rise of explainer videos in business

The rise of explainer videos is, despite being quite meteoric, just a natural extension of what went before – presentations and pictorial infographics. 

It’s rather difficult to pinpoint with accuracy where it all started, but many believe that it was Twitter that first used the power of a video to explain what the fuss was all about.  Ever since then, businesses around the world have taken to the idea of using simple, easy to understand and likeable explainer videos in addition to (and, at times, instead of) conventional user guides, manuals and other thick wads of documentation that nobody reads. 

 

Explainer videos are here to stay.

Let’s take a look at some data:

  • Over 90% of B2B & 95% of B2C companies in the UK use online video sharing for lead generation, sales-driving and customer acquisition. 
  • Explainer videos are preferred to text-based tutorials or documentation by over 75% of customers. 

*Sources – TechCrunch, Forbes

 

Video – the best mode of digital communication?

Here’s some more!

  • 80% of internet users remember the most of video commercials they came across while using the internet in the past one month. 
  • 64% of online shoppers prefer products listed with explainer videos or features videos. 
  • Engagement time on a web page improves by over 250% when the page features a video. 

*Sources – Video Brewery, WYZOwl

 

Does your business need an explainer video? 

As long as your business exists or operates in the digital sphere in any capacity whatsoever (read: social media, websites, ads etc.), it needs a good explainer video, nay, it deserves a great explainer video! 

This criterion may sound too simplistic to some. Let’s break it down a little. 

If you operate one or more social media accounts and make a conscious effort to keep them updated regularly, you would know that user engagement counts for a lot. An explainer video improves user engagement by 180% in terms of time spent and content shared.

If you run a website of your own or a listing in a third party website (online shopping, real estate listings etc.), the value of ‘standing out’ need not be preached to you. An explainer video can help you catch, hold and convert the attention of potential customers into sales.

Run online ads of your business? Struggling to get good enough web traffic that can be converted? Explainer videos as ads are a potent strategy that can improve click-fall and customer acquisition by over 200%.

Another attractive facet of explainer videos is that they provide short term as well as long term business benefits. Easy customer acquisition can be a short term benefit, while customer retention over long periods through engagement can be a long term benefit. 

The first commandment of business (if there was any) would have been to invest opportunistically.

Investing your resources in explainer videos is much akin to investing in the bright future of your business.

The fact of the matter, quite simply, remains that you can’t go wrong with a neatly scripted, designed and produced explainer video! 

Now, ask these big questions about your business:

  • Is that lengthy, verbose article explaining your new product/feature really going to be read? 
  • Does having a website cluttered with big chunks of paragraphs achieve anything (except, perhaps, driving paltry traffic)? 
  • Are you not able to drive your point home more easily by communicating directly with your potential customers? 

Can you see it? An explainer video is your answer to everything. 🙂

 

Why do explainer videos work?

To really understand why explainer videos work like a charm, digging a little bit deeper than superficial numbers is required. There are solid reasons – of a psychological and physiological kind – why users seem to cast a seemingly decisive vote in favour of videos, over texts. 

Easy does it

Let’s face it. Reading requires work. Watching videos doesn’t. For example – hundreds of thousands have read Harry Potter books, while hundreds of millions have watched Harry Potter movies. 

Having a great product doesn’t suffice. You need to present it in an easy-to-like package. Explainer videos provide that package to users.

Appealing senses

Explainer videos appeal to auditory and visual senses of watchers, a huge advantage to have over media that depend on just auditory (podcasts, for example) or just visual (pictures, infographics, texts, for example) communications. 

It has been observed that audio-visual media help users understand 75% of the matter, as opposed to 40% when the singular sense is targeted. 

Human connection 

An explainer video helps create a direct human link between the business and the potential customer. This establishes a rapport that, if managed well, can easily lead to long term business. 

Studies by independent researchers reveal that users are up to 80% more likely to buy a product if they are convinced of its quality by a voice other than their own! 

21st-Century attention span

It need not be put on record any further that attention spans of people – all over the world – have dwindled quite significantly since the advent of the internet. Reading ‘Middlemarch’ is not an idea of entertainment anymore – watching a 6-7 second Vine, however, certainly is! 

That’s precisely why users seem to sway towards explainer videos. 

Making it ‘stick.’

In the good-ole American terminology, making a sale ‘stick’ is about making it whole and true. Similarly, making an idea ‘stick’ is about allowing the users to have it lodged into their memory in a pleasant way – like a catchy jingle tune. Explainer videos achieve that without even trying.

Mindfulness of explainer videos
  • Over 66% (2/3rd) of users choose to rely on the information presented to them via audio-visuals, without even referring to texts. 
  • More than 3/4th of all internet users exhibit ‘engagement’ of over 90% when watching videos, as opposed to a mediocre number (35%) while reading texts.

 

Explainer videos: Various styles of production

At Nibble, we work with organizations of all size producing bespoke animated explainers that best represent their brand. Below you’ll find the most common animated styles used to produce video explainers:

Whiteboard Animation

Perhaps, the best known and most loved style for explainer videos. 

It is simple, precise and extremely viewer-friendly. A digitized hand is used to replicate drawing movements, coupled by background narration from expert voiceover artists. 

Whiteboard animations rarely fail. With internet bigwigs like Google, LinkedIn and Flipboard regularly employing it, its popularity need not be questioned. 

2D and 3D Animation 

Another popular style of explainer video production uses 2D and 3D animation techniques in isolation or combination. 

Using 2D animation is fairly common, but using 3D animation for explainer videos can be slightly tricky, if not done in moderation. The biggest advantage of these styles is the higher reported level of engagement than any other style. 

Live Action Animation 

Live action animation, as the name might give it away, involves ‘live action’, that is – real videography, real people, real places. 

Although it’s not very common to use live action animation in explainer videos, it is well suited in the production of videos intended to carry difficult information. For example, monetary products like insurance packages appeal to viewers more if they can actually ‘see’ the face of the voice telling them things.

Typography and Infographics

Typography, just like whiteboard, is a popular and no-frills approach to explainer videos. 

It usually involves the use of ‘spoken text’ coupled with imagery, videos or other types of animation, in order to appeal to the ‘text and image retention’ power of viewers’ memory.  

Infographics based explainer videos follow the same idea, albeit with more complex designs, effects and animations. 

Customised Animation

Every explainer video needs to be produced differently because just following in on templates never works. Hence, custom solutions involving two or more techniques listed above can be resorted to in order to achieve the best possible result. 

 

Industry-wise applications of explainer videos

At Nibble Video, we have been fortunate enough to work with a wide array of businesses, spanning many industry areas and spheres. Based on our experiences, we have compiled an indicative list of applications of explainer videos for major industries. This list will give you an idea about how you can use explainer videos to your advantage, in your industry. 

 

Industry Potential Applications of Explainer Videos
Automobile and Automotive New car/features launch, service information, utilities, industry stats etc.
Biochemical and Biotech Research stats, research pitching, research funding, product details, product overview, product potential  
Charity Fundraising, organization history, an overview of achievements, award entries 
Consumer Goods and Retail New website features, new shipping features, new business strategies, customer analytics, business trends, market analysis 
Construction and Housing Business history, business portfolio, new projects, architectural insights
Computer and IT Employee training, software launch, software upgrades, market enhancement, instructional videos
Corporate  Employee education, acquisitions and mergers, company profiling, addressing shareholders, media management, PR 
Data Data management, data analytics, data visualization, data resourcing, data optimization
Education Tutorials, training, distance learning 
Finance Finance product launches, finance product comparisons, projections, speculations, trends 
Food and Consumable Goods Product features, nutrition stats, diet help, brand history, compliance information 
Government Public interest campaigns, public awareness campaigns, social work 
Internet Social media, web traffic funnelling 
Manufacturing Employee training, product specs, new designs, commissioning 
Marketing Product awareness, brand promotion, product functionality tutorials 
Medical Healthcare tutorials, staff training at hospitals, employee training at offices 
Pharmaceutical Compliance information, safety information, product details, instructional videos, awareness 
Telecom Brand history, market evaluation, PR

 

Are you looking to produce a bespoke explainer video for your business?

If you are convinced that an explainer video is what your business needs right now to go with your latest product or service (or any other reason), you should take it upon yourself to learn more about what it is you are trying to achieve. 

At Nibble, the very first advice we furnish to those who inquire with us is to get some homework done. Watching a few popular explainer videos can give you an idea about what options exist, which avenues can be explored and how far the boundaries can be pushed. 

Knowing enough about these fundamentals will help you on two levels:

  1. You will be in a position to make an informed decision, rather than getting sold to a studio. 
  2. You will be able to get involved to a better degree in the whole production process, meaning that the end result will be something you envisioned and you are positive about. 

There are a few ground-rules or assessment criteria you can use while choosing between shortlisted production houses:

  • Experience: Always look at the portfolio of the studio and the kind of feedback they have received before you even begin to form an opinion. Making sure that the studio has a varied range of accomplishments to show is essential.
  • In-house Expertise: It’s better to choose a studio that has good in-house expertise. Hiring third-party services for various aspects of production is only going to create discord and inevitable delays – not to mention the digression from mutually understood concept.
  • Approach: A studio that has more or less same approach to the task as you do can be a great pick, simply because you don’t have to try too hard to be on the same page.

 

PRO TIP 

Your engagement is important. So, always go with a studio that promises to keep you posted at each stage of the production and incorporate your feedback. This will avoid unexpected end results and preclude the prospect of any major revision.

 

About Nibble Video

Nibble Video is wholly given to creating and producing stunning animations that connect with viewers on visual, intellectual and cerebral levels. Backed up by Fudge Animation Studios, one of the UK’s foremost independent animation studios – Nibble is a creative extension to your Marketing & Communications department. Well versed in all animation techniques – from 2D to Live Action, we are committed to bringing the power of animation to your business, 24×7! 

 

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