Explainer videos and animated marketing are a powerful way to engage & inform your audience.
You've got a product or service. Your audience have problems.
You know you can solve those problems — but how do you make the right people aware of your offering and how it can help them?
One increasingly popular way is through an explainer video (or animation).
These are short videos that explain your product or service quickly and succinctly. Hence the name.
They're ideal for introducing your target audience to your offering and showing them how working with you will make their lives easier. They sit at the top of the marketing funnel but can be used across a range of locations (your site, social media, paid campaigns) to generate awareness, encourage engagement and increase conversions.
Here are some of the best examples of explainer videos and animations we've ever seen, along with the key tips you should take away when making your own.
7 Examples of Incredible Explainer Videos & Animations... and the Rules that Make them So Effective
1. Tripcase — Emphasise the Pain Point
The best way to get your audience interested in your product or service is to explain how you'll solve their problems. That's why you need to focus on pain points.
All the explainer videos in this post mention the pain points, or most pressing problems, of their audience. But Tripcase is a particularly strong example because it does so repeatedly yet subtly — making the pain point really hurt.
Tripcase's target audience hate the hassle and chaos of travel. This video represents that pain through a series of flustered travelers rushing past on the travelator, while the Tripcase user remains cool and collected.
Using pain points in your video content like this is an effective way of explaining to your target audience why they need your product or service, on both a practical and emotional level.
2. Mint — Keep it Simple
Like most types of video content, explainer videos are best when short and simple. Your audience is meeting your product or service for the first time, so this isn't the right place to go in-depth.
Instead, give your viewers a quick overview of what makes your offering different and how it'll help meet their needs. That's exactly what Mint does. Their explainer animation doesn't cover all the specific and powerful things you can do with the service, although it does give a great initial explanation of why you need it in your life.
You'll have plenty of time later to get into the nitty gritty of extra services, add-ons and subscription types. Explainer videos are all about generating that first spark of interest that will compel your target audience to find out more.
3. Notarize — Be Funny
Why make things boring when you can make them fun? Humour can work wonders for all kinds of marketing — and that applies to explainer videos too.
Notarize took what was probably the most boring thing on earth — notarization — and made it funny, interesting, and very watchable. They realised that nobody would want to watch a dry video about this topic, even people that needed exactly what their service offers.
So instead they took the opposite route, using humour and authenticity to explain a potentially boring idea in a way that builds goodwill with their audience. A dash of history, a sprinkle of dressing up and some excellent editing make this maybe the funniest and most shareable explainer video of all time.
4. Crazy Egg — Show Your Product or Service in Action
You won't always be able to do this, but showing your product or service in action during your explainer video can help push potential customers towards purchase.
Crazy Egg chose to show their heat and scroll map tools at work in their explainer animation. By showing their target audience exactly what they'll get for their money, the company succeeded in removing that aspect of buyer uncertainty from viewers.
When you're selling an online service or software (particularly complicated, technical ones), it can be useful to give your audience an idea of what it looks like in use. Leads want to know they'll be able to get stuck in with no problems, and by answering that question you're one step closer to a closed sale.
5. Amazon — Prove Why This Needs Explaining
If you need an explainer video, it's likely you've got a product or service whose benefits aren't immediately obvious. It could be new technology, new design or just something nobody's ever thought of before. Either way, you should play up to that novelty.
In the explainer video for Amazon's new shopping service Amazon Go, much is made of the revolutionary nature of the service. Becuase it's an idea their customers aren't yet familiar with, the company takes the time to explain step-by-step how easy it'll be to use. This helps familiarise leads with the new service as well as positioning Amazon as a market leader.
If your offering is truly unique, don't be afraid to get a little detailed about how it works. You'll build more trust with potential customers by shining a light on the innovation and technology involved.
6. Panorama9 — Be Visually Interesting
The best explainer videos never forget that they're videos. They take advantage of visuals, colour, motion and pacing to help explain their product or service.
One surefire way to keep your audience engaged is to use interesting, quirky visuals. Here Panorama9 took a fun idea for their creative inspiration and ran with it. What if being in IT isn't much different from being in a demanding video game?
Not only is the metaphor perfect for Panorama9's target audience, but the gorgeous visuals back it up by emulating the look of retro games. The animation itself could probably be shorter while still getting its key points across. However, it still manages to maintain its audience's interest by being so fun to watch.
7. HubSpot — Resonate with Your Audience
At the end of the day, a great explainer video needs to do one thing: connect with your audience so they'll be eager to find out more.
That's why, in their explainer video, HubSpot make it all about their audience of modern marketing professionals. They begin with a statement about what it's like to be a marketer today, and carry on by discussing their leads' biggest concerns and reservations.
Plus, they represent their target audience with actors, which can help potential customers to visualise themselves using the service. And the script returns time and again to what their audience want to achieve most: a smooth, joined-together understanding of what their marketing is doing.
Round-up: Explain and Conquer with Explainer Videos
Those were 7 of the best explainer videos of all time, plus the key tips you should follow when planning your own.
Here's a roundup of those takeaways again:
- Emphaise the pain point
- Keep it simple
- Be funny
- Show your product or service in action
- Prove why it needs explaining
- Be viusually interesting
- Resonate with your audience
As with all types of video content, it's vital that you thoroughly understand your target audience and core messaging before creating an explainer video or animation. This video should be just one part of your whole video content marketing strategy — the initial draw to show you audience exactly why they need your product or service, and compel them to move further down the funnel.
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