Type “explainer videos” into YouTube and about 3.9 million animated video results proudly appear for your delectation. Google “explainer videos” and the 21.4million results are awash with low cost turnkey animation studios boasting “we’ve produced over 3,000 explainer videos”.

Lines like “we’ve produced 3000 explainer videos” are meant to provide comfort to the explainer video virgin. I don’t doubt that these offshore companies have created 3,000 explainer videos. I do however question the relevance of the claim. For the following reasons, I urge you to question them too.
Four million explainers (on YouTube alone) mean your prospect has likely been subjected to the off-the-shelf vector-based, one dimensional treatment. So before you upload your script into the explainer video sausage factory, ask yourself  “how will my explainer video differ?”.
The truth is, it probably won’t differ at all. Your animation could end up as beige and vanilla as your competitor’s.

“But I like vanilla!” you may exclaim 

OK, so just for a moment let’s imagine you follow your competitor’s ‘lead’ and create an explainer video similar in style. Your opportunity to differentiate on execution is instantly lost. Everything now hangs on the script. From this point on it’s merely a war of words. Words that are likely written by the business, for the business, that probably forget to consider the most important thing in business, the customer.

Ends with Benefits

Explainers are chock full of technical features, workflow diagrams and statistics. Facts, figures and features may rationalise a sale, but it’s the benefits that truly make a sale. And it’s the latter that explainer videos fail to authentically cover.

Marketing IS explaining

Somewhere along the line explainer videos seem to have forgotten that they are still marketing. Marketing has always been about explaining why you’re bigger, better, faster, in the most creatively engaging fashion possible. Marketing isn’t just about communication, it’s about differentiation and leaving a lasting impression that results in a sale.

The quick big bang

Content marketing has exploded in the past few years – which has (unfortunately) increased demand for low-cost, quick turnaround content like explainers. But if it leaves your prospect unimpressed, it’s a false economy.
The price of off-the-shelf content will always be lower than bespoke. But fast effective relief from your content marketing problems will probably result in content diarrhoea. The thing to remember here is that your marketing content has to work harder to rise above the trite that already exists.

Don’t eat oranges if you’ve got diarrhoea

Random I know, but A, it’s a fact, and B, as you’re about to watch, I am going to give you an orange as an effective solution to explainer diarrhoea. ‘The Orange’ is a great explainer video that on the surface doesn’t remotely smell like a normal explainer video. But as you’re about to watch, along with Christopher Ecclestone, the film uses an intelligent yet simple metaphor to explain a myriad of key facts…
Yes Christopher Ecclestone brings a lot to The Orange. But even if the video featured an unknown presenter, I’d still be confident you’d remember it far more than it’s animated rival (which to be fair is one of the better animated explainers I’ve seen). The Orange is simple but effective. It’s intelligent and provides the audience with what good marketing should – credit.
If you do remember The Orange over it’s animated rival, you’ll find yourself in the very position you need to put your prospects in.
Just one more thing….
This blog was inspired by a recent pitch. We presented both of the above videos to not only demonstrate the difference, but more importantly how the client could ultimately differentiate themselves in the long term whilst truly engaging their audience.
And guess what?
We won!

Barry Richardson is the Founder & Creative Director of
BRAVO  : :  Creative Marketing Well Done

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