animated explainer video

Last year, it wouldn’t have been an issue to put 10 or 20 people in this same room to film a business explainer video, breathing the same air for hours.

In 2020? Not so much.

But businesses still need to generate leads, and putting together a B2B marketing video is a helpful way to do that. So what’s the safest way to create a video for your company?

Enter the animated explainer video!

Animated explainers have been a popular choice in the past. They’re a great way to engage your audience quickly with a combination of both audio and visuals. Now, this format is even more in demand due to the strict COVID protections.

Done correctly, animated explainer videos can efficiently pitch a product or services in just a few minutes, while also introducing viewers to the company’s personality.

So, what exactly do these videos look like when they’re done successfully? Let’s take a look at five examples of successful animated explainers and discuss why they stand out.

Simple Life

At 1:38, this video packs a punch. Overall, it’s visually exciting and, while very informative, it doesn’t overload viewers with jargon.

Specifically, there are a few reasons why this video is so successful:

Hitting Pain Points

Humans have approximately 8 seconds’ worth of attention span before becoming disinterested in a video. Simple Life is able to quickly hit on their audience’s pain points within that crucial window by giving real-life examples of how frustrating the normal insurance process can be (nobody likes a lot of copying and especially not sending faxes).

Bold Color Choices

Simple Life’s video has a beautiful color palette that immediately catches the viewer’s eye, along with impressive graphics and seamless transitions (the 80’s icon transformation is a personal favorite!). Plus, their illustrations show office workers in their natural environment, which their target audience can easily see themselves in.

Thoughtful Script

When writing explainer scripts, it’s often better to focus less on your features and more on the potential benefits. That’s why Simple Life’s script is so impressive. It was written to highlight the benefits of their platform while subtly pointing out its wide range of features.

With engaging graphics, a strong script and a voiceover artist that clearly expresses Simple Life’s down-to-earth tone, this example contains several animated explainer best practices to strive for in your videos.

E Com Security Solutions

E Com Security Solutions takes a different yet equally noteworthy approach in their animated explainer:

Showing Stats

This video not only quickly hits on a possible pain point for their viewer, but almost immediately provides surprising statistics to prove their position. Relevant statistics (from trustworthy sources) can help add value, depth and credibility to your video.

Offering Value:

E Com didn’t just create a video that advertises their services. They provide their audience with a step-by-step process on assessing potential risks in their applications, delivering valuable information to their viewers. Their structured framework also helps their audience know what to expect from the rest of the video, possibly keeping them watching for longer to catch all the steps.

Helpful Captions

The accompanying text is easy to read and simple to jot down as a viewer, while still allowing the voiceover to elaborate further. These captions also make their video more accessible to viewers who could be deaf or hard of hearing.

Engaging Music

The video also features music throughout that mimics the movements of the robotic graphics. Both the music and the graphics work well together in the background, without overpowering the voiceover.

If you’re interested in offering your audience tactics that prove you know your stuff, a step-by-step video such as this could be the way to go.

Plex Manufacturing

Plex Manufacturing’s pared-down animated explainer shows that you don’t need extreme transitions or detailed graphics to make a successful video. Here’s why it works so well:

Efficient Animation

For some of our previous examples, the graphics went beyond illustrating only what the voiceover was saying. Plex uses their graphics more mindfully. Instead of adding extra frills, they’ve used their animation as a secondary support to the voiceover, helping Plex get their point across more clearly.

Professional Script and Voice-Over

It’s obvious that Plex put time and consideration into both their script and their choice of voiceover artists. Contrary to the more casual tone of the Simple Life video, this script doesn’t waste time with banter. It quickly establishes Plex’s core values of being professional, honest, reliable and collaborative through word choice and tone.

Symbolic Color Palette

This video features an even simpler color scheme compared to our two previous examples. The blue, white and black stay consistent, which means the viewer will notice whenever yellow, pink or green appears. These color variations also help support the voiceover as they discuss how consumers want more choices more often (hence, pink and yellow boxes as opposed to only white).

Relating to Common Problems

Before jumping right into why their manufacturing cloud product is the right choice, they first discuss several reasons why traditional options are dysfunctional and not meeting modern warehouses’ demands.

By listing these issues, their target audience will most likely find their own pain points and be encouraged to continue watching. Only after they expose the potential problems of traditional options do they expound on the benefits of switching over to Plex.

You don’t need complex graphics to have a successful explainer. A strong point of view can carry your animated video, so focus on creating a script that addresses your customer’s pain points, pitches your product concisely and demonstrates your company’s values.

ZenDesk

ZenDesk is our only example that clocks in at under a minute, proving that your video doesn’t need to be bursting at the seams with details. Too much information could easily overload your audience.

Here are a few reasons why ZenDesk’s video is successful:

Adding Sound Effects

ZenDesk’s audio choices include catchy music and sound effects for their graphic transitions. These little details help engage your audience further. Something as small as a firework sound effect can keep viewers engaged.

Connecting With Viewers

By stating a universally agreed-upon feeling like, “Relationships are complicated,” the video establishes a common ground between the viewer and the company. Once they have this one thought in common, they can build on this and discuss the equally complicated relationships between businesses and customers.

Inviting Script

The script’s “common ground” building also develops a light-hearted relationship between with the viewer. For example, ZenDesk likens the way they help businesses get to know their clients’ hopes to being, “kinda like Santa Claus…but real!” Verbiage like this makes it feel more like you’re chatting with someone casually and comfortably, and not talking in a formal business meeting.

Subtle Graphics

Even with just simple shapes, this video’s graphics can still keep the viewers on their toes with intricately woven animation. Plus, since the background stays consistently neutral, the viewer can focus on the narrative.

Specific Text Usage

Instead of adding too much text to their video, ZenDesk only uses text to signal the important features they want their viewer to remember after watching.

If your goal is to make your audience feel comfortable with your company, take a note from ZenDesk. Their casual script, light-hearted voiceover and easy-to-process graphics make the video as a whole inviting and relatable.

Insurance Program Manager’s Group

Let’s say you’re interested in creating an animated explainer video without breaking the bank. Is there an option out there for you?

We’ve heard this question from many of our clients, and the answer is yes! Your animated explainer video doesn’t need to blow out your budget.

Here’s an example of a video we created for Insurance Program Manager’s Group (IPMG) and why it worked:

Focusing on Information

We created an informative, high-quality video featuring simple graphics to help illustrate their services. We collaborated with IPMG to write a script that presented their company’s capabilities, and then found voiceover talent and an animation team that fit their finances.

Relating Through Hypotheticals

We chose to frame this video through a hypothetical example, a tactic we haven’t seen in the other videos we’ve highlighted. For a complex industry, this approach gives the viewer a real-life situation they could see themselves in and shows how IPMG’s service could help.

Keeping Animation Simple

Similar to Plex, no fancy graphics were needed here. The main players are a strong script and framing device that helps their audience learn about IPMG’s offerings.

By creating an animated video on a budget, you may lose some of the flair of our previous examples, but those things are just the extra icing on the cake. Instead of worrying about intricate transitions for graphics, focus on:

  • Putting together a script that gets your point across clearly and quickly
  • Finding a professional voiceover artist within your budget
  • Investing in an animation team that can provide simple but effective graphics 

Don’t Forget

These examples should help spark inspiration for your animated video, but you don’t have to stick to these exact formats! Your animated explainer video can be a helpful window into not only your company’s services but your values, your personality and what it’s like to work with you.

Wondering how to get started with an animated explainer video? Don’t worry, we can help! Our team is well-versed in planning your video concept, writing the script and putting together the resources and strategy to help it succeed. Contact us today to get started.