By John Rampton,
It’s no secret that video marketing is a major trend. User engagement with video material is higher than other forms of content, video is more accessible than ever before (thanks to mobile devices and faster Internet), and it’s easier to produce than it has been in previous generations.
According to Dan Patterson, “Humans are incredibly visual and powerful, moving images help us find meaning… [and] video helps capture and contextualize the world around us.” But how can you best use video for your brand?
One of the best ways to start is with an explainer video, which is designed to give new users a run-down of what your products or services are, and how they work, in the span of a few minutes.
The Practicality of Video
Why aren’t more businesses using explainer videos and other types of video marketing? Part of the problem is a perceived impracticality of video; because a video has historically been expensive and time-consuming to produce, businesses would rather stay toward more straightforward, cheaper methods. However, video production is growing more affordable as technological resources become more sophisticated and more available.
You can contract with a video marketing agency fairly inexpensively. According to Eddie Nuvakhov, CEO of LNC Productions, a company that specializes in explainer videos, “Video technology has advanced to the point where it’s cost effective for almost any business to utilize. There’s really no excuse not to use it.”
Why Explainer Videos Are So Effective
So why are explainer videos so effective?
- They’re concise. First off, explainer videos are concise. In the words of Robert Weiss, “Business decision makers LOVE online video because it gives them the most amount of information in the shortest amount of time.” They’re generally only a few minutes long, which means your customers won’t have an easy excuse to bail early. Writing for such a concise format can be difficult, but the end result is a message that’s short enough to really hit home with your audience.
- They show a problem and a solution. Video progresses linearly with time, which means you can show a chain of causality from problem to solution. Illustrating how your products or services solve a customer need is incredibly valuable for securing more conversions. You can accomplish this through written content, but it doesn’t have the same effect.
- You can get creative. The best explainer videos are ones that aren’t afraid to creatively experiment. You can write jokes into your script or play with innovative animation features. You can even include some interesting music in the background; this is your chance to give your audience a memorable video watching experience. According to David Levy, Nuvakhov’s business partner and COO of LNC Productions, “a video that surprises people, or otherwise delights them, will stick with them indefinitely. It’s a chance to get inside your customer’s mind and stay there if you have the right creative team to make it happen.”
- They can be used anywhere. Once you make an explainer video, you can use it in a number of different contexts. You can keep it on YouTube, you can embed it into the homepage of your site, you can use it as a feature of your landing page, or even incorporate it into slideshow presentations. They’re short and universal enough to transfer easily.
- They’re an approachable medium. Though there’s a slight learning curve, explainer videos are an approachable and learnable medium for marketers. You don’t need to spend years studying them or thousands of dollars to make one. That’s probably why 65 percent of marketers are planning to increase their video marketing budgets.
- They’re useful for new and old customers alike. Even though the primary function of an explainer video is to reach new audiences, they can be useful for established customers as well. This is especially true if there’s a learning curve with your products and services; the explainer video can serve as a kind of tutorial. As Savannah Stewart explains, “many of us have become more comfortable learning visually. Delivering information on a product, service or company through video can help to keep your audience’s attention longer and make what you have to say more easily understood.”
- They’re adaptable. Because they’re short and relatively easy to edit, you can switch things around quite easily. For example, if you launch a new feature, you can add a few extra seconds at the end of the video to promote it, or if you want to experiment with different music or a different narrative, you can.
- You can show your brand personality. You can let your brand’s personality shine throughout the video; you can write it in the tone of your script, include visual styles that reflect your character, and even choose a narrator that best represents your brand “voice.” In fact, more than a third of all video marketing budgets are now directed toward branded videos.
- You can show off the benefits first-hand. Thanks to the visual and running nature of video, you can show off the benefits of your product or service first-hand, such as with a brief product demonstration or a walkthrough of your software. This helps people see what they’re buying and will put many of their doubts to rest.
- You have a chance to prove your worth. Explainer videos also give you a chance to prove your value as a brand with visually represented statistics, video testimonials, or the mention of some big brands you’ve worked with.
If you want to make an explainer video for your brand but don’t know where to start, begin by taking a look at explainer videos some of your competitors have done. This should help you find inspiration and direction for your own video so you can start jotting down ideas.
Then, you’ll need to find a means of video production, whether that’s scouting for an agency or trying your own hand at the task.