There are many styles of video. Your job is to determine which style of video you are looking for and which one will get your message across the best. Explainer Videos are among the most popular right now.
What are Explainer Videos?
Explainer videos are short online marketing videos used to demonstrate, display and or explain your company’s product or service. These videos are everywhere nowadays.
This can be a good and bad thing. With the surplus of explainer videos out in the world, especially with the rise of TikTok, audiences are getting tired of seeing similar, cookie-cutter, videos that just explain a product, with mediocre animation and storyline.
There is no doubt that online videos are great assets for a business. With that being said, there are right ways and wrong ways to go about creating these types of videos. There are three common mistakes that can really hurt an explainer video.
- Creative intention
The first common mistake made when creating explainer videos is that you haven’t carefully thought out or strategized how you’re going to put together the video and where in their sales funnel you intend to use the video. Boston video production agency, Skillman Video Group’s, CEO and Creative Director Christina Skillman says, typically in your sales or marketing processes, the higher up your prospects, your leads are, the shorter your video content needs to be.
The other aspect of strategizing your video is planning out where you want your video to be shown in your sales process. Are you informing the viewer for the first time? Are they a repeat customer and you want to introduce a new product to them? Or are they an enterprise-level company and you need to sell them on you or your business?
It is something that is different for everyone and it’s just something to really think about before you can start strategizing the rest of your video.
If you don’t have a firm creative direction in place, you will end up wasting a lot of time shooting multiple takes or you might keep changing your mind, which at the end of the day, may not lead to a cohesive piece.
It is very important to manage your time because as the saying goes, time is money.
There are multiple ways to strategize all aspects of the video. Do research about what style of explainer video you’re trying to create. There are live-action explainer videos, animated explainer videos, and even the classic whiteboard explainer videos.
Live-Action Explainer Videos
Live-action explainer videos are great for businesses that sell an actual product or a people-oriented service–like restaurants or stores!
By having actual people in your video, you allow the audience to make an emotional connection to the characters. This is because we as people are naturally drawn to other people.
Animated Explainer Videos
Another plus, besides the ultimate creative freedom, is you have the option to go back and update the video, with less hassle than if you needed to update a live-action one.
This type of explainer video is great for intangible objects or services, especially software.
Whiteboard Explainer Videos
It’s exactly what it sounds like, a whiteboard. You have probably seen this video many times in the past. It is very common among companies who may have a lower budget and cannot afford to create an entire live-action or animated sequence. The way effective whiteboard explainer videos work is that there is a camera stationed directly above or in front of the whiteboard. The actions are quick and there are many cuts in the video to cut out all of the drawing time.
Viewers don’t want to sit there and watch the process of drawing. They want to see the product. That’s why there are so many cuts in this type of video. Viewers love the fast drawing, and they can easily piece together the content in between the shots.
The second most common mistake made when creating an explainer video is the length. Too many people try to go into every little detail about every little thing, ending up around five, even ten minutes long. That is way longer than it should be. The magic numbers are 60 to 90 seconds. This allows for many things.
It lets the audience stay focused, which increases the odds they will like the video and even go further and look into purchasing it. 60 to 90 seconds also lets the creator get their point across faster. Although this short amount of time does not allow for many topics to be discussed, the point of an explainer video is to sell one thing. It is better to have a sole focus on one item and get the product out to more people, than having many topics covered in less detail, leading the viewers away from your site.
Keeping it short and sweet is what’s effective. Looking back at that TikTok example, the reason it skyrocketed with popularity is that the videos were, entertaining, short, and relatable. These are all characteristics that you want your video to have.
Last but by no means least, the third common mistake we will touch on today is the fact that people don’t put enough thought and intention behind the creative elements of their animation. You have to put yourself in the shoes of your audience. If your content doesn’t meet your target audience, you’ll shoot and miss.
If you want to go after big companies, your animation needs to look like you can play at their level, and don’t underestimate the importance of the creative elements. Creative elements are not one size fits all and there’s no right or wrong answer.
This type of content is wonderful. People love it and it’s very popular because they’re effective.
There are great marketing tools out there, you need to avoid those three common pitfalls in order to get the biggest return on your investment. Here is a video to quickly recap what you just learned!