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Top explainer videos and what makes them great

Have you ever wondered what makes the top explainer videos great? How long are they How should the script be structured? What style is best for my market? Here's a few ideas that may help you make sense of the choices facing all companies considering making an animated video to explain their product or service.

Explainer videos – the structure explained.

First, most top explainer videos follow the same general format. First, they identify what the problem is that their product or service solves.

For example, if the company has made an app for young people that makes text messaging free, the video might open with a narrative like this. “Meet Dave and Michele, Dave and Michele are two young lovers that met while on holiday in Hawaii. Sadly, when their holiday ended they returned to different states and stayed in touch by text message which ended up costing them a fortune”.

So that's the problem.

Next, the video will go on to introduce the solution. “Then they heard about FreeText, a great new app that makes text messaging free!”


The explainer video might then explain one or two features and benefits and it will then close with a call-to-action. “To learn more, go to iTunes or Google Play now and search FreeText. It's only 99c and you'll save a bundle!”

So the format is simply:

  • Problem
  • Solution
  • Action

This formula has been used for decades in sales and it still works today.

How long are top explainer videos?

In terms of length, most top explainer videos run for less than 90 seconds. These days, people are attention-poor and over loaded with the sheer mass of information available. To put this in perspective, a 90 second explainer video is a script with about 250 words. This alone can be a major challenge for most entrepreneurs.

Keep your explainer videos simple and focused on benefits.

The key is to pick one or two emotive ideas and not to make the mistake of trying to cram too many features in. If you do, the video will become bloated and impotent. Clarity, simplicity, ease of use are all virtues of a top animation.

Choose a style that works for your audience.

Finally, you need to choose a style that works best for your audience. There are several main styles that are in use today but the top two are cartoon style animations and white board animations, otherwise known as scribe videos or doodle videos.

Each of these styles has pros and cons and you are best to talk to an expert production studio like Fire Starter Videos for advice. At Fire Starter we charge the same regardless of style, but there are some very particular reasons why in some cases one style is better than another.

For more information about getting a top explainer video, please contact us today. We'd be honored to assist you!

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