An explainer video, as defined by Plainly Simple Studios, is a fun and informative video that can run anywhere between 2 minutes to 4 minutes. They are very adamant in their statement that explainer videos are way more effective than “just text or boring videos” because of the light-hearted entertainment factor. It can capture a viewer’s attention – and retain it.
Brandefy, a Los Angeles video production company, produces explainer videos to give their clients an animated demonstration of their products and services that is both simple and easy to understand. As proof of the explainer video’s power, Dropbox credits its borderline insane growth of 0 to 100,000,000 viewers in less than five years to this revolutionary digital marketing medium. When you visited their homepage, all it had was their logo and an explainer video.
Crazy Egg, an online application that tracks a website’s operation using visuals, also credits their 64% conversion increase to the explainer video they placed on their landing page. Other notable companies that have used incredible videos to boost their presence and sales are Pinterest, Amazon Echo, and CashOut.
And if testimonials aren’t enough to sell you, maybe science will. Here’s the psychological side of explainer videos, and why they’re slated as digital mediums that may stand the test of time.
There’s a reason God invented movies and Hollywood, and it was not so we could shamelessly drool over unfairly attractive men and women blessed with the gift of acting and gab. A lot of us crave entertainment; something that can keep us amused or engaged.
The things we find most entertaining now as adults usually manifest in the things we loved when we were kids; story books, coloring books, make-believe, and cartoons. And they all, in one way or another, revolve around a story. Explainer videos appeal to that side of us that can appreciate a good story told well.
VISUALLY WIRED AND ENGAGED
Studies show that we use 50% of our brain to process something visually, and it actually just takes 150 milliseconds for us to process and understand a visual scene. It’s the same reason why traffic lights use colors – green, yellow, red – instead of text – go, slow down, stop. For that matter, all road and traffic signs use this concept. ‘No Left Turn’ is an arrow pointing to the left with a red line through it, instead of the actual words.
I could keep listing examples, but I think the point is made. We process visual signs quicker than anything else, and thus understand them sooner.
The last – but definitely not the least – reason why explainer videos work so well is because they cause something called a pattern interruption. A pattern interruption is – as the name suggests – something that interrupts or deters from the usual pattern. It’s something that is unusual, unexpected, and happens suddenly.
Think of when your usually peaceful and quite morning commute on the train is interrupted by two people arguing loudly, or when you’re walking down a street you’ve walked on a thousand times before and there’s suddenly a street performer on the corner, juggling flaming torches.
We are naturally drawn to something that causes an unprecedented commotion or stir in an otherwise regular setting. Explainer videos break up the monotony of a wall-of-text landing page, thus capturing our attention.