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How To Create An Outstanding Explainer Video

Neil McleanApril 21, 2021

In this blog, we’ll cover three key areas:

  • What is an explainer video?
  • How do you build an explainer video?
  • How can you distribute & track explainer videos?

What Is An Explainer Video?

Explainer videos are high-level overviews of a product offering or service. They allow viewers to quickly understand what value a product or service offers a prospective customer. For example, a lead generation service might explain how they find leads for businesses and where they fit into the sales process.

Why Are Explainer Videos Effective?

If produced effectively, explainer videos can be a quick and enjoyable way for users to understand how your product or service helps them. For many users, this is their first interaction with your company so it’s important to understand what message you’re sharing with prospective customers.

Below is an example from Gusto, HR payroll and benefits software:

The Gusto example is deceivingly simple, but subtly achieves many important outcomes:

  • Problem Identification - they identified that many HR systems were outdated and complex.
  • Solution: They shared how Gusto uses automation and a simple UI to enable all companies to easily manage payroll and benefits.
  • Call-To-Action: They encouraged users to “Get started with Gusto” and shared the link to the Gusto website so users can immediately go to the website and sign up.

How To Create An Outstanding Explainer Video

You have two options here.

  1. Outsource the explainer video
  2. Build the explainer video yourself

There are sites such as Fiverr or Upwork where you can pay for a professional to handle production and scripting of your explainer video. This is a good choice if you’re limited on time or bandwidth.

This blog walks through the second option - building it yourself. Let’s dive in!

The Content

The first step to building a great explainer video is building a clear script. Let’s start by addressing some key questions.

  1. Who is my target audience for this video?
  2. What problem do they currently have today?
  3. What impact does this have on their business?
  4. How does our solution help them address this problem?
  5. What is the desired call to action after they watch this video?

Now, answer those questions very concisely.

The Storyboard

Storyboard out the desired scenes you’d like to show. This could be informally on a piece of a paper or follow detailed mockups made in one of the below common prototyping & design tools:

  • Figma - This tool helps teams create, test, and ship better designs from start to finish.
  • InVision - The digital product design platform powering the world’s best user experiences.
  • Sketch - Create, prototype, collaborate, and bring your ideas to life with the design platform

Explainer Video Software

What do the best explainer demo videos have in common? The production quality is at best impressive and at minumum, doesn’t detract from the story.

Once you have a clear idea of the content and storyboard, now is finally the time to design! To build the actual video, you can use one of the below tools. g

  • Adobe After Effects - Complete video software that allows you to create cinematic movie titles, transitions and animations in 2D and 3D spaces alike.
  • Fillmora Pro - Another video editing option. This is best for low-budget teams that need to polish and refine small projects to perfection.

Where should you distribute your explainer video?

  • Marketing Website - Add an explainer video directly on the homepage for viewers to experience
  • Email Campaigns - Include in outbound email campaigns to nurture and engage leads

How do you track explainer videos?

There are many services that allow you to upload, track and share videos. When you use their platform, they provide detailed insight on user engagement and drop off.

  • Wistia - Video marketing software that makes it easy to find, engage, and grow your audience.
  • Vidyard - Enables teams to add video into your emails, website, and everywhere else.

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