If you didn’t know already, an explainer video is a short animation video that businesses use to get their brand stories across in an attention-grabbing manner. They became popular when a company called Common Craft made a video to explain the use of Twitter.
How effective are explainer videos and why do explainer videos work?
Often, businesses find it tough to express what they do in a manner that’s easy for their customers to understand. Haven’t you visited websites and left without REALLY understanding what the company is all about or what services they are actually offering? This is exactly where an animated video can help. By combining audio and video, explainer videos can substantially increase retention rate and deliver the value proposition of a company/brand clearly and succinctly.
As human beings, we love a good story; especially when the stories help us engage with ideas familiar to us. When new concepts are added to the familiar ones in explainer videos, it helps to put across the new concepts to viewers beautifully!
Explainer Videos are Different from Branded Videos
Often, companies get right into video but include branded clips into the content marketing. These are not the same as explainer videos. Branded videos are more like ads; they provide engaging and informative content, but can’t really be animated. They are longer than explainer videos as well.
Explainer videos on the other hand are concise, precise videos that serve up a range of ideas in a tiny package and allow viewers to understand what a company is all about, and the importance of its products and services. In other words, explainer videos convey to viewers through a simple story, the purpose of the existence of a particular business.
How Explainer Videos Work
Experts opine that when used correctly, video is the best medium for delivering information as it kindles visual and auditory senses. This dual approach enables the viewer to retain this new information for long term. Just think – over a billion unique visitors are seen on YouTube each month; this translates into over 6 billion hours of video watching every single month! If you’re not tapping into this ever expanding audience, you’re missing out seriously!
How do explainer videos help businesses?
One of the main reasons for online video experiencing explosive growth is that Google rewards sites where visitors spend more time. Obviously, if you have interesting videos on your site, visitors will spend some time watching them. Explainer videos are affordable, and effective in growing a business, and that is why they have become increasingly popular. This awesome marketing tool helps to boost conversion rates, explain your product and enhance sales. Let’s see in detail how explainer videos help businesses:
- Boost conversion rates: surveys have shown that around 85% of people are more likely to purchase a product after watching an explainer video. Explainer videos help entrepreneurs to track how many visitors on their sites are potential customers. There is also no need for manual counting of sales to identify popular products as explainer videos display the number of views for each video, telling you what product or service people are interested in.
- Explain your Product: explaining through written content may not always work, as written stuff can be interpreted in several ways by readers. But explainer videos are pretty straightforward and give people a better understanding of your product or service through audio visual clues. You can connect with your target audience in a much better way; use the explainer video why they should come to you instead of your competitor.
- Rank higher in SERPs: As already mentioned before, Google rewards sites if people spend more time there. Voluminous text and tons of images (and not updated for ages) rank low on Google search which means less exposure; such sites also tends to drive visitors away. Explainer videos on the other hand engage viewer interest and helps them make a purchase decision quickly, causing the site to rank higher in search engine result pages.
- Generate more Interest: an increasing number of businesses spread awareness about their products and services on social media through images and videos. Studies have shown that over 70% of netizens watch online videos. Videos help generate interest in your business, products and services.
- Drive more web traffic: though there is no formula for making a video that will eventually go ‘viral’, many products have become popular thanks to viral videos – even many international brands we all purchase today.
- Increase the information retention of your audience: on an average, we retain only about 10% of what we hear; but if we see something, we can retain up to 50% of it – so say experts. There is no better publicity than word of mouth; when viewers like a video, they tend to share it, and this can help your audience grow as well.
- Make your pitch more interesting: A pitch on a paper can be a bit blah. Power Point presentations with charts and slogans are not always successful in engaging your audience. So stir things up! Make an explainer video to make your pitch. With a robust script, the right music and visuals, you can catch the attention of the viewer from the word go. An explainer video is especially helpful if your product or service is complicated. Traditional web content with loads of text, Flash and images, colored fonts and so on, tend to confuse or annoy the viewer rather than grab their attention, not to mention that it slows down the load time of your website immensely. Whereas if you include all of these ideas in a simple animation video, it keeps your page free of clutter, AND gives the viewer the requisite information to engage and convert
- Easily Shareable: your explainer video doesn’t have to be restricted to your site. You can upload them to video sharing sites like YouTube and Vimeo , using keywords to attract attention of internet users. These sites can easily be browsed on Smartphones – so even if your site is not responsive, your video can still be viewed by mobile users through these websites. The tendency of people leans more towards watching and sharing videos rather than reading and sharing big blocks of text.
- Display your personality : let the viewers know who you are; don’t be just a faceless corporation selling stuff online. And the best way to do it? Explainer videos of course! Putting a face to your name helps build trust in the viewer’s mind; to connect with you.
There are many more benefits than those we listed here – it would simply take way too much time; perhaps we’ll make an explainer video to explain the benefits of these videos! Across the world, organizations and individuals make videos to create awareness, publish reviews, product demos – you name it. Just some more proof that video is the most popular medium for people to share information and promote stuff.
Explainer videos for B2B and how can you leverage the power of video marketing
You may think that explainer videos are only required for selling to individual users; but these videos are equally powerful marketing tools for a B2B organization. It is in face, one of the marketing tools that gives you highest ROI. Business professionals have limited time during which they are overloaded with information. Their attention spans are scanty to say the least. You have to make your impression in a very short time, and very effectively. Explainer videos help you do this very well – you can present the most important bits of information in a beautiful, lucid manner.
Now this begs the question that if explainer videos are so great for B2B companies, then why aren’t we seeing more of them? It could be due to several reasons like:
- They find them expensive to produce
- They feel they cannot commit the time required
- It is difficult to find the right video producer or videographer
- Sometimes, they are just wary of taking the leap of faith
None of these concerns are illogical – they are quite valid. An effective and successful explainer video doesn’t just happen on its own. You can labor over one for ages, and give it your everything, only to see it biting the dust without making an impact. What is required is having precise and more importantly, realistic expectations of the results.
- Strategize: For a B2B explainer video to succeed, you need to give it the same consideration you give other marketing strategies or tools. Play the numbers game, and have a clear understanding of your goals and ROI. For example, let’s say that you will be able to boost conversion by 10%; try to work out the corresponding increase in sales. Based on that, you can decide how much to allocate to your marketing department to spend.
- Explain your value proposition clearly: Tell the viewer what is in it for them; regardless of whether they are CEOs or department heads, or any other stakeholder for that matter, everyone is looking for solutions to their pain points. As far as they are concerned, time is money, and they do not have the patience to sit around and wait to find one through trial and error. Your explainer video:
- Needs to address your audience’s pain points
- Explain how your product or service is the best solution to that pain point
- Demonstrate how easy your product or service is to use
- Have a robust script at the ready: Don’t get into this unprepared. A good script forms the base on which everything else in your video stands. If you think you won’t be able to pull it off, don’t be shy to get professional help. Rope in someone who will look at things with fresh perspective, and helps you tell your audience what you do, in a manner that they find easy to understand, and interesting. Start writing after you’re done brainstorming. While visuals are crucial, nothing is more important than your messaging. An effective video uses simple images, but is able to convey your message in a strong, compelling manner.
- Professional voice: if you make an awesome explainer video, it will help you connect emotionally with your audience. And to do this, you need the right voice – it’s absolutely crucial. Someone with a weak or raspy voice can completely spoil the entire video. Never mind that everything else is brilliant. You need someone who can modulate their voice, use the right tone, enunciate well, and bring out the emotion in the words. In short, they must be able to captivate and bowl over the audience. Imagine listening to the radio, a webinar or podcast. What makes you listen more? The content is important, no doubt, but the way it is presented, plays a huge part. What’s more, you need professional recording equipment. So what you need to do is go to a recording studio, which can be yours for the duration of the recording at a small fee. Remember that it has to sound professional.
- It’s always a work in progress: a really great explainer video is never really ‘done’. It’s a work in progress! Conduct A/B tests regularly. There are tools like Unbounce, Optimizely, Website Optimizer and so on that can help you do this. You also get reporting tools which can help you make an analysis of your data. Make a video with separate sets of audio and video files or make adjustments as you get new ideas. Software like Wistia will help you monitor your video engagement metrics so that you can work out how best to max your conversion rates.
So how will you get the most out of your explainer videos? We’ll talk about one of the best ways to do it: perfect positioning.
- Home page: Place your video above the fold, because most users won’t scroll down. Make it easy for them to find the video and play it – and yes, have a BIG play button, so that you encourage them to click on it.
- Landing Page: Quite like the one above, keep it above the fold, and you can see your bounce rates falling; it will also help you increase the visit time by about 2 minutes. Have a clear, visible CTA, either in the middle of the video or right at the end.
- Email marketing: Both open and click through rates increase quite a bit if there are videos in your emails. People are also more likely to purchase after watching it.
- Email Signature: By placing an explainer video as part of the email signature, you can boost visibility significantly.
- Social networks – the most obvious place. Enough said!
- Blog: By adding engaging visuals to your blog post, making your content easier to ‘digest’. This will also boost your SEO efforts and rank your page higher in SERPs.
- Presentations: You can also use explainer videos in presentations to grab the attention of investors, partners and any other stakeholders to whom you’re just introducing the product.
- Ads: using explainer videos in paid ads can help you achieve fast results, as you can target specific audiences as well as monitor interactions with customers.