Three Steps To Successfully Produce Explainer Videos

Do you have something you want to explain? Does it need simplifying in order to communicate it? The best way to do this is through a video, so you’ve come to the right place! In this article, you will learn what you need and what you must consider in order to successfully produce explainer videos. Let’s get started! 


1. Where is your journey heading? Clarify your goals first!

Clarify your goals first when creating explainer videos

When producing a good quality video, you can either create your video yourself or hire a service provider, it makes no difference which you chose to do in the beginning. In both cases: Know your final destination! This is because, on the way to the finished product, you should always ask yourself if it is heading in the right direction. In order to answer this question as accurately as possible, it is best to determine your goals before production begins.

It is advised to create goals for your explainer videos before you get started in as much detail as possible. Goals that are generalised will not be very helpful. After all, how can you be sure during the production of the explainer video whether the video is “great”, “good” or “promising”? It might be even more difficult to come up with the necessary ideas to bring your explainer videos closer to these goals.

However, it is a different situation when it comes to having concrete goals. Whether your goal for your explainer video is for it to be “funny” or “target-group oriented” it is easier to check if you have reached the aim when you have defined it in advance. The more of these goals you define in advance to creating your explainer videos, the easier it will be to achieve them later on resulting in a faster production process. For each video, do not create too many goals as this can make it too hard to achieve all therefore, keep it to one or two goals per video. After all, if you have too many ideas, it becomes increasingly difficult to implement them all accurately.

Your target group can guide you through the process of establishing goals. Some questions you can ask yourself before creating the video in order to meet your aim are, what is their level of knowledge? What are their concerns, fears, and needs? What do you want to achieve with them? By answering these questions, you are already well on the way to setting concrete goals for your video. 


2. If you have a strong briefing, half the work is done!

If you are having your video created by a service provider, you should convey your ideas as clearly as possible in a short briefing. In advance to sharing your ideas with the service provider, ensure you have thought about it in detail and your goals for the video are clear. In addition, a short briefing over the phone is always helpful – and preferable to a written briefing to ensure nothing is being misconstrued and that the end goals are being interpreted accurately. This also enables new perspectives to be shared and discussed that had not previously been thought of.

The 60 to 90 minutes required for a thorough briefing is well invested time, as it will save you time at a later stage of production if something is misunderstood or not communicated. It also improves the level of work carried out by everyone involved as nothing is left to wonder, everyone has the same level of knowledge from the very beginning and are able to work together in sync.

When creting explainer videos, a strong briefing is a mustA strong briefing is half the work. If you rely on a professional to create your explainer video, you can assume that your service provider will send you a questionnaire. This will help you to reflect on the goal and direction of your video, for example by asking about the focus of your video – explaining or promoting – or about the problem and solution within your topic. Usually, the questionnaire will also ask about production-related aspects such as the colours, drawing, and animation styles to be used or the length of your video. 

Even if some clients feel reminded of a homework sheet by the questionnaire, it is advisable to quickly scare this thought away. The questions are usually well-considered and all support the process of finding your goals. The questionnaire will enable you to leave the professional team a good, clear foundation of what you want your explainer video to look like. 


3. Skilful conception: The art lies in omission 

Since the attention span of even the most motivated viewer is limited – studies show that the average human has an attention span of 8 seconds, our experience leads us to believe videos should be no longer than 2-3 minutes. It is worthwhile to put a large weighting of importance on keeping videos short and brief when producing explainer videos. How to do that? Just leave out everything that is not important! 

Decide what's important and what information to exclude

When producing an explainer video, you have to decide what is important. If the goals and requirements for your video are clearly defined in the first step, this helps to differentiate between important and unimportant content. Remember: This differentiation is not about the fundamental content, but about the content that is important for the goal of this one specific video you are working on. 

An example: You would like to convey your company’s compliance guidelines in an explainer video. It would be a good idea to include the values of the company in the video, right? That shouldn’t take more than 2-3 sentences, should it? Wrong! With such a decision, you soften your topic and risk losing the viewer’s attention. In this case, it is better to create several videos, each of its own topic. This is more likely to lead to success than a single video that is supposed to convey many different topics at once, which would divert the attention of the viewer.

Besides the three most essential steps to a successful explainer video, six other elements play a decisive role in the creation and production of an explainer video. The second part of this article will tell you what these are.