Video explainers explained

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Video explainers have never been more in demand. Be it for business presentations, company websites or internal training and communication purposes, these have become the short-sharp way of grabbing eyeballs, telling it right, and making it clear.

But first, what is a video explainer?

Exactly what the term suggests – a short video that explains a product, a service, a feature, a program, or even a company!

These are mostly animation videos – rather than live shoots. In other words, while they do deliver content visually, they are far simpler to create than ad films. They usually combine moving images, stills, text and music to crisply convey the message. Unlike ad films, they can be produced in-house, using the vast wealth of resources online – from stock footage and ready templates, to free sound effects and animation software.

Let’s look at some of the most popular kinds of explainer videos:

i) The “talking heads” explainer video: In which a person talks to camera. This is ideal where you need a convincing and personal pitch, especially ahead of an upcoming event or program, or even to communicate with global offices, and get the team together with a pep-talk. These days getting that professional look is easier than ever: all you need is a quiet ambience, a smartphone and a script. A good idea would be to formulate it like a TV-interview, write down the questions in advance, so that even if you are literally recording yourself it has that dynamic Q&A feel of a live interview. Inter-title slides can carry the questions or key points as text, thereby focusing all the attention on the speaker’s answers.

ii) The “whiteboard” explainer video: This is especially good for product demos or process run-throughs, as text and diagrams can be written and erased, in simulation of a classroom or creative lab situation.

iii) The “animation” explainer video: This one is our favourite, as it enables a combination of elements. Using simple graphics, clean layouts, peppy music and to-the-point narrative, this format works brilliantly to tell brand stories, communicate business plans and motivate employees. Whether you go for 2D or 3D, the end result is viewer-friendly, impactful, memorable. Easily embedded on company websites, and truly cost-effective, it’s clear why animation explainer videos are so in demand.