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    Explainer

    Get Up to Speed on Explainer Videos

    Abstract

    • Explainer videos are the #1 video type marketers use at their organization.

    • 96% of consumers have watched an explainer video to learn more about a product or service.

    • 48% of marketers say that explainer videos produced the best content marketing results for their brand.

    • 68% of consumers prefer watching videos to learn about new products or services, as compared to articles or infographics.

    What is an Explainer Video?

    Explainer videos are exactly what they sound like. They’re digestible videos that creatively explain information about your brand or product. Explainers are effective across a variety of platforms, from Connected TV to social media channels.

    The goal of this video type is to help consumers develop a deeper understanding of what your brand represents, the products you offer, and the value it provides. For instance, if you want to educate audiences about your business, explainers allow you to posit a topical industry problem so you can position yourself as the sole solution a consumer needs. 

    If you operate an eCommerce store, explainers are incredibly useful, especially in a world more online than ever before.

    For example, demonstrating a product in an explainer can bridge the gap between online and in-person retail. Brands often rely on in-store associates or activations to educate customers, deepening their understanding of products in real-time. In the online shopping environment, explainers become digital proxies for physical experiences, relaying vital information that can feel just as personal and approachable as if they visited a brick-and-mortar.

    Especially for awareness campaigns, you can educate your audience about your brand and products in tandem. While this animated explainer QuickFrame enabled Roomi to create is ultimately around their offering, it does a marvelous job toeing the line between selling a product and selling itself as a brand.

    An example of an explainer video from Roomi

    How it Works

    As a visual description of your product or brand, explainers can take the form of live action or animated productions. Both come with their own unique cost drivers, and creative elements, so keep that in mind when building out your budgets and schedule.

    If you choose a live-action explainer, you can hire professional actors, social influencers, or real customers to demonstrate your product. You can even feature your own sales or marketing teams to establish your brand personally as thought leaders while driving your narrative.

    Seeing a person engaging with your product in real time helps the viewer visualize how they might interact with your offering. This helps instigate “social proof,” a psychological theory that consumers are more inclined to buy products if they see others using them. Why else do you think we want to buy something the moment we see a celebrity using it?

    As seen in this video, skincare brand Korres used on-screen talent to explain product information and demonstrate how it’s used to establish social proof. 

    An example of an explainer video from Korres.
     

    What they may lack in social proof, animated explainers more than make up for in their limitless creativity. Leveraging anything from 2D and 3D animation to stop-motion effects can help consumers see your product in a way that would be impossible with live action.

    This is especially true for intangible products, like apps or services, that require a glimpse at a user interface to be truly effective. Additionally, layering in narration, motion graphics, and on-screen text in an animated explainer will help reinforce your product’s unique value props.

    A simple example of this approach can be seen in this video QuickFrame enabled OLLY to create. Leveraging simple motion graphics to bring static assets to life, they were able to explain their core value props by threading in on-screen text.

    An example of an explainer video from OLLY
     

    Top Industries for Explainer Videos

    • B2B
    • Fashion & Beauty
    • Health & Wellness
    • Tech
    • Intangible Products (SaaS, Apps, etc.)
     

    Top Use Cases for Explainer Videos

    • Awareness
    • Consideration
    • Retention
    • eCommerce
    • Product Marketing

    Effective Best Practices for Explainer Videos

    • Focus on the problem your customer faces and then deliberately highlight the solution offered by your brand.
    • Tactically address commonly asked questions and key value propositions.
    • Though often short and to the point, explainers will vary in length depending on your audience, goal, and message.
    • Casting relatable talent helps your consumer envision themselves with your product.

    What the Industry is Saying

    “It always starts with the questions, ‘Who is our target audience? Who are we talking to? And what message do we want to convey to them?’ Those are the baseline creative questions that dictate the rest of the [explainer video.]”

    Mike Leonard, Director and Filmmaker (via Adobe)

    “Stay authentic. Cut through the clutter with an explainer video that brings the product or service to life in an authentic, engaging way, showing passion for what the company does. This creates an emotional, compelling connection for consumers, allowing them to envision themselves using your tool to solve their problems.”

    Howard Breindel, DeSantis Breindel (via Forbes)

    “Use graphics to add understanding to the story, not necessarily to mirror what the words are saying. You should use illustrations as opportunities to express the message via images.”

    Peter Boyd, PaperStreet Web Design (via Forbes)

    Recommended Reading 

    Want to expand your explainer knowledge to get a firmer grip on the style before your next campaign? Look no further than this required reading list from industry thought leaders to kick off your ideating.

    • Why explainer videos are perfect for eCommerce videos (QuickFrame by MNTN)
    • Industry insights to keep in mind when producing explainer videos (Forbes)
    • A guide for creating brand video marketing, like explainers (QuickFrame by MNTN)
    • See where explainers land on this list of best advertising video types (QuickFrame by MNTN)

    Conclusion

    Brand commercials and product spotlights may be great video types to show off your brand or offering at the surface level. But if you want to get granular, you’ve got to produce explainer videos. 

    Applicable to a myriad of industries and use cases, this video type can do what typical advertisements simply cannot: take your target audience on a deep dive into who your brand is, and how your product works. Giving them a 360 degree view of your business on the front end can help alleviate any issues post-purchase–decluttering the customer journey in the process. We’re pretty sure that’s a benefit we don’t have to explain to you.

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