In this article, we are going to talk about the explanatory video, known in the drawn variant as an explanation through animation. Because you can stick behind your keyboard for days on end for that one piece of text that should explain your company or service, but sometimes an explanation video is all you need.
You know such a wonderful animation video on a website that tells the whole story in 30 seconds. No wonder an animated explainer video is so popular!
Which explainer video do you choose?
First of all, it is important which type of explanatory video is suitable for your company or product. There are many variants, but these are the best known: a video with the presenter, animation based on infographics, whiteboard animated explainer, screencast explanation video (screenshots of your screen, we will come back to this in a minute), or even a completely drawn cast with your employees in animation form.
Corporate films in which staffs have their say can sometimes come across as a bit awkward. After all, not everyone turns out to be a true star once on the screen. By going for employees in animation form, you can present the most ideal situation in an explainer animated video.
The latter form is of course more difficult to make yourself, but we are happy to give it to you as an idea for perhaps a later stage.
An explanatory video with yourself or a customer
For companies with a physical product, a video with ‘real people’ can also work out well: simply presented by yourself, or a satisfied customer. Most smartphones record video in HD quality, so in fact, this is really easy to do yourself. You could consider putting your smartphone in a tripod, something that greatly improves the quality.
There are even tripod adapters available, with which you can put a smartphone on a photo tripod that you may already have at home. Think of the lighting of your self-made explanation video: preferably recorded in the lightest room and turn on as many lights as possible in dark weather. You don’t have too much light with video.
A screencast of your website
A screencast is probably the fastest by yourself. It is basically a live recording from your browser. While you visit the website, a screencast records all actions. Add a voice-over and you’re done! Ideal if you want to explain something to customers based on your website.
The most widely used tool is Screencastify, and it comes as an extension for Google’s Chrome browser. It couldn’t be more convenient. The tool is free, but it is limited to 10 minutes and you may see a watermark.
If you do not want the latter, you can remove these restrictions by going for the paid version of only 20 euros. In short, an excellent solution, just have a look:
An animation explainer video in the cloud
The animation might be a bit more difficult to make yourself if you have never done this before. Yet there are also do-it-yourself solutions in this area. A must is a Mango Animation Maker, where you can simply produce your own best animated explainer video in the cloud with pre-produced characters and scenes.
Prices can vary, but it is certainly an affordable alternative to the companies that offer a tailor-made animated explainer video.
Create a whiteboard explainer video
If you are good at drawing on a whiteboard, or you know someone who is, you could also consider a homemade whiteboard explainer video. The trick is this: record your drawing actions with the time-lapse function. People don’t often think about this possibility, so you immediately have a very original explainer video!
How do you edit the voice over?
Some tools in the cloud also offer options to put music or a voice-over under your images, but if you have, for example, shot images with your phone, you will have to do that on your computer. The free programs Movie Maker (Windows) and iMovie (Mac) can do this very well.
You can arrange it in fifteen minutes, but if you encounter problems you can watch an explanation video on YouTube how that works. You could of course also ask a freelance video editor who will do this for you in half an hour.
Start with a script
Whatever explanation you go for: always start with a script. Just as a voice-over does not just record a text, this also applies to your video. Especially think of your main points and the benefits of your company or product.
Ask yourself: what sets my company apart from the rest? And leave out all that is superfluous, also known as the art of omission. Good luck!