Explainer Videos Explained


Last week’s blog introduced Orgwide’s approach to explainer videos.  This week we’ll dive deeper into when and how to use explainer videos to create effective, informative, and engaging messages.

Let’s re-examine what an explainer video is.  Think of an explainer video as an elevator speech.  It’s a message that you need to share in about the same time that it takes to go from the ground floor to the 12th story.  You just have a few minutes to get you message across, so you need to be clear and succinct to be effective.  

When to Use Explainer Videos 

Explainer videos are a great way to share information or reinforce previous messaging.  Think of new product launches, company values, or breaking down more complex information into smaller chunks.  Explainer videos are not ideal for teaching more complicated new skills.  Other delivery channels are better suited for that type of learning.  

How to Create Effective Explainer Videos

Good explainer videos are typically less than two minutes long.  How do you share your message in such a short time and still be effective?  Have you ever heard the phrase “If I had more time, I would have written a shorter letter”?  (By the way, this is attributed to Blaise Pascal in 1657.)  That is part of the secret to explainer videos.  

The Orgwide process for creating corporate training explainer videos involves these simple steps:

  • Know your audience, and what knowledge they already have.
  • If there’s a problem to solve, start by identifying the problem, first.
  • For educational videos, write out your learning objectives.  No more than 3 and preferably fewer.  
  • For videos about a process, introduce the process first, then describe its steps and benefits to the audience
  • Time to write the script!  Keep your script simple and avoid lengthy run-ons with tons of commas.  This makes it easier for the voiceover artist and keeps the “visual representation” moving and interesting.  Target 400 words or less.  Above all else, “Write Like You Talk.”  In other words, write for the material to be heard, not read.  Use a conversational tone.  Read the draft out loud.  This will help you correct any awkward phrasing.
  • Storyboard – The finalized script will be put into a storyboard with creative ideas to help you imagine a “visual representation” for each sentence or two in the script.  The visual representation is used to “connect the dots” or further explain the material for the viewer beyond just the voiceover.
  • Beta Review – With the storyboard and script finalized and approved, Orgwide will create a “beta” version of the video for your review and approval.  Any final tweaks can be made at this point and a finished product will result!

Orgwide can create custom eLearning explainer videos to fit your specific needs and make learning fun! Contact us today to learn more!