The Ultimate Guide to Explainer Videos (with Examples)

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You’ve probably seen many websites using animated videos on their landing pages. No matter if you name them explainer videos or corporate videos; they all serve the same purpose: to explain a product or service in an easy and quick way, which makes them a great marketing tool for any business.

Why are there different styles of explainer videos? Each style appeals to a different kind of audience and will also affect the budget of any video production. In order to nab your audience’s attention and start really converting, you should know each style of Explainer Video. The question is:

What’s the best style of animated explainer video for your website?

We collected a list of the most popular styles of animated marketing videos, along with our exclusive recommendations for each one of them.

Screencast Video

This is a simple screen capture or video film showing how to use a program, website or software. Screencast videos are the lowest-budget type of video but equally useful. These videos are more about education than branding. They are typically longer videos (more than 5 minutes), and work well for prospects who like to watch how the product works before they take action.

Cartoon Style or Character Animated Video

This is one of the most popular animated explainer video types on the market. A story is led by an animated character, who is presented with a big problem that he or she can’t solve. That’s when your product or service appears… saving the day!

The character usually represents your brand persona (target audience), so it’s important to have a custom design character that truly relates to them, humanizing your brand by giving it emotion and personality. These kinds of videos have great results because they quickly catch the attention of the viewers and are really fun to watch.

Whiteboard Animation

This trendy and cool technique was originally created by an illustrator who drew on a whiteboard while being recorded by a camera. Later on, this technique evolved and is now created digitally. Back in 2007, UPS showcased Whiteboard Commercials, and in 2010 the Royal Society of Arts created whiteboard animations from selected speeches, making the RSA’s Youtube channel the #1 non-profit channel worldwide.

Whiteboard Animations are a super engaging technique, because it has an educational approach, where the content is created in front of the viewer’s eyes.

Motion Graphics

Motion graphics are, essentially, graphic elements in movement that uses the power of colors and shapes to convey complex messages that would have been impossible to otherwise convey. These videos offer engaging styles for businesses with more serious profiles and are a great way to explain abstract concepts.

These explainer videos are especially impactful with B2B communication efforts.

Motion Graphics with 3D Elements

Motion Graphics animation with 3D elements integration brings a more elegant and sophisticated look. They’re ideal in making your company stand out above the competition.

Motion Graphics are the perfect choice for companies and products related to new technologies, digital services, applications or software.

Cartoon Style with Motion Graphics

Cartoon Style Explainer Videos with Motion Graphics are one of the most popular types of animated video out there and, as simple as it sounds, they bring together a mix of techniques. Cartoon characters lead the story and provide a close approach with the audience, while the use of motion graphics animation is used to explain complex concepts.

With this style, we get the best of both worlds – The friendly aspect and funny metaphors of a cartoon style video and the power of engaging animation of the motion graphics technique.

We recommend it for B2C communication, but they can work well for small businesses and start-ups too.

Stop-motion or Claymation Animated Videos

Stop-motion explainer videos are one of the oldest techniques since they’re not dependent upon high-end digital technology! These are handcrafted videos – accomplished frame by frame.

This animation is produced by recording each frame, or still picture and then playing the recorded frames back in rapid succession, taking much longer to produce. The results are completely different and quite amazing. Stop motion is a beautiful technique when done well, they can also be quite expensive.

We recommend this kind of video if you want to use a sentimental approach with your audience.

3D Animated Videos

A professional 3D animated video could be really amazing, since there are no limits to what a 3D video can accomplish. However, this option is one of the most expensive ones, so they’re not an option for startups with limited budgets.

If you are really thinking about making a 3D animated video and you can afford it, you should do your homework first and search for experienced companies. A low budget 3D animated video can actually lead to negative results.

Now you have a great overview of what kind of animated explainer video suits best for your business’ landing page, and which will most effectively grab your audience’s attention. Want more? Download Yum Yum Video’s free ebook – The Ultimate Guide to Explainer Videos!

Disclosure: Yum Yum helped put this post together for Martech Zone readers and we’ve worked with them directly on a few projects!


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    Now whenever my clients ask what type of explainer videos I make I have this handy guide to show them. Thanks Douglas for putting this guide together. Is there anyway you guys might be able to feature my business on your blog? I put my email in comment section

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