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Explainer Videos: Why You Need to Have This Brand New Shiny Marketing Tool

Posted In Business - By Techtiplib on Friday, April 11th, 2014 With No Comments »

You have a lot of blog posts up right now, so why bother with video? Well, if you’re not producing videos yet, you’re really behind the 8-ball. Most of your competitors are already using video to better explain their services and they’re making you look bad by implication. “How-to” videos have made a comeback and, while their popularity waned a little in 2008-2009, users are now being turned onto them with better quality video and instructions. Here’s how to take advantage of the second-wave of “how-to” explainer videos.

Explainer Videos: Why You Need to Have This Brand New Shiny Marketing Tool

What Is An “Explainer Video”?

An explainer video is essentially a “how to” video that explains something – usually a product or service you offer. Whatever you have to sell will need to be explained, and a video that’s set up as a “how to” can do that for you in a way that is very appealing to most users.

Do explainer videos really work? Yes, they do. If they didn’t companies like Demo Duck wouldn’t exist and companies like CrazyEgg (that semi-famous company that competes with Google Analytics) and ZenCash wouldn’t use them.

Video Styles and Formats

There are four major styles you can use when doing an explainer video. First, you can use a web video presenter. This is, more or less, a live person speaking directly to the camera. A 20 or 30 minute motion graphics video uses a number of graphic combinations like motion graphic videos, simple graphics, and visual design to tell a sales story. Typically, some audio is added at the end for effect.

Cartoon animation uses, well, cartoons (obvious, right)? Through cartoons, just about any story can be told, and it’s usually pretty entertaining to watch bubbly cartoon characters flying across the screen. Finally, there’s the whiteboard animation. This is probably one of the more popular formats out there. Basically, someone draws on a whiteboard and illustrates a sales concept. There’s a voice-over, and usually music is added at some point.


Explainer videos are commonly used as sales videos, but they can also be used to teach your internal staff about company developments, new processes, and about the company itself. So, you could use explainer videos as training aides, or you could use them during company meetings as presentations.

If you want to stick to creating videos for your target market, you could try creating viral videos, sales pitches, educational videos, and promotional videos.

Tips For Making Videos

First and foremost, make your video professional-looking. If you don’t have editing software that can make professional videos, hire someone to do this for you. Consider allowing users to download your video from sites like YouTube using programs like the one at That way, they can watch and share the video with others, even if they aren’t on the Internet, as long as you remember to respect IP.

Create a video that makes sense for its purpose. For example, if you’re creating educational videos, avoid the common practice of soft pitching a product or service at the end of the video.

Know your target market. If you’re creating a sales video, use the same principles that apply to a sales letter or ad, because this is what your video essentially is – an ad.

Steven Young is a businessman of many years. He likes to help others by sharing what he has learned online. 

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