Explainer Videos: What They Are, Why You Need One and Keys to Success

Gerri Knilans
5 min readJun 5

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With countless marketing channels at our fingertips across social platforms, apps, and the internet, capturing and retaining the attention of target audiences are more challenging than ever before. With an overwhelming volume of information reaching prospects daily, marketers are always searching for innovative ways to stand out from the crowd and effectively convey their message to the people who need it most. One powerful tool to accomplish this is known as the “explainer video.”

What Is an Explainer Video?

Explainer videos offer a concise and engaging way to communicate business ideas, products or services. These short, often animated videos utilize captivating visuals, compelling narratives, and impactful messaging to garner the attention of ideal audiences. Whether it’s simplifying intricate concepts behind your services or highlighting key features and benefits of a product, explainer videos have proven to be an invaluable asset for B2B marketers.

While explainer videos and video advertising have some overlapping features, they aren’t the same thing. Both are short, often one to two minutes long, and focus on a company’s products or services with a consistent brand identity. Video advertising, however, is designed to promote and create brand awareness. Explainer videos, on the other hand, have the distinct purpose of educating and simplifying complex information to engage and inform a specific audience. Think of video ads as a way to invite a prospect to say “hello,” while explainer videos act as the official introduction.

Five Key Elements to Successful Explainer Videos

Explainer videos can make an impact when it comes to capturing audience attention, increasing conversions and driving business growth. Understanding their influence is half the battle, but it’s essential to know how to make them successful. Here are the five core concepts B2B marketers need to know about the benefits and best practices of explainer videos and the statistics to back them up.

1. Find and communicate your competitive edge.

People love videos, but there are a lot of videos out there vying for their attention. According to Biteable, explainer videos are the third most popular form of video created by marketers today. This means it’s important to make your video unique and memorable. Use explainer videos to showcase your brand, expertise and the experience of working with your company. Most importantly, illustrate what makes your brand different from the rest to reach the prospects who will benefit most from your products or services.

2. Pack a punch from the beginning.

The length of an explainer video impacts its effectiveness in capturing viewers’ attention and delivering the message you need. Keep in mind that 77 percent of viewers watch an explainer video for up to two minutes. By showcasing your value proposition early, you’re putting the most important information first. A longer video can work, but viewership drops from 77 percent to 57 percent after the two-minute mark. Try not to overload prospects. If they’re listening to your explainer video, it’s likely they’re just getting to know you for the first time. Focus on the most important points and save the details for later in the sales funnel.

3. Position your explainer videos for the right stage of the sales cycle.

Explainer videos are an important part of the buyer’s journey to introduce what you do and how you do it to anyone who discovers your brand. In fact, 96 percent of people have watched an explainer video to learn more about a product or service. Position your explainer video so it meets that need. That could mean featuring it on your website’s home page or pinning it to your social media profile. It could also mean attaching it to another key piece of content such as an email or sales presentation.

4. The explainer video is only one step on the path.

Explainer videos are a vital way to introduce your brand and services to potential customers, but converting customers typically takes multiple touchpoints. After the explainer video, ensure there is a call to action that encourages the prospect to take the next step. Mike Jingozian, award-winning video marketer and founder of AngelCore, says it’s important to give the viewer just enough information to get them curious. “We are particularly skilled at taking very complex information and explaining it in a way that motivates viewers to want to learn more,” Jingozian says. “Connect with your guests by offering something of value, such as demos, webinars, case studies and white papers.” By giving viewers a specific next step to take, they can choose to get more information about services, make a connection or find relevant content.

5. Visuals stimulate buyer education, emotion and memory.

Explainer videos, by definition, aim to explain a concept, idea, product or service. Consider that two out of three people prefer to learn using visual and graphic materials. Add auditory elements and the impact compounds. Explainer videos stimulate a viewer through multiple senses, heightening emotion and helping viewers learn and remember. “They all have complex messages that need the script and visuals to work together,” explains Jingozian. “We don’t just animate random 2D images. We use animation and graphics to visually explain technical features so that your message will be understood and remembered.”

A Powerful Way to Say “Hello”

Regardless of the industry, in today’s digital age, attention spans are fleeting and competition is fierce. Explainer videos have emerged as an indispensable tool for marketers to make an impact and offer a unique way to say “hello.” These videos captivate attention, enhance prospect or stakeholder understanding, boost engagement, and ultimately drive conversions. By harnessing the power of explainer videos, B2B marketers can effectively communicate their message, differentiate themselves from competitors and achieve remarkable business growth.

Originally published at https://www.tradepressservices.com on June 5, 2023.

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Gerri Knilans

Marketing communications strategist. The right message. The right medium. Guaranteed.