In this article, discover excellent cheat sheet for perfecting your explainer video script in 2019
80% of all online traffic will be coming from videos by 2021. Explainer videos are a super popular video format among marketers these days to inform, educate, and engage their audience. What better way to quickly grab the attention of your audience than to show them a 60 or 90 seconds explainer video which leaves them inspired and interested in your product or service. Let’s jump right into how a great explainer video script is designed.
What’s an Explainer Video Script?
To make your explainer video a hit among your target audience, it is essential to have a fool-proof engaging video script. An explainer video script acts as a foundation upon which the whole video is designed, narrated, and visualized. It contains the entire text for the voice-over artist, some broad pointers about the mood of the video for the video editor and a detailed guide about the end goal and existing scenario of the product or service for the animation artists.
Explainer video script checklist
Even though an explainer video is super short and concise, it must have a proper structure. For an explainer video to be successful, it must feel like a story and not a boring lecture. A professional explainer video has a beginning, a complete body, and an ending. There’s a lot that goes into crafting an explainer video that perfectly conveys the intended message to the target audience. Let’s have a look at some of the checklist items.
1. Your explainer video speaks to the right audience
Consider a scenario where you are making an explainer video for super smart and highly informed active teenagers. What do you think will happen if you start reiterating obvious facts and details which they already know? The teenagers will lose interest and will most likely abandon your video before finishing it. For your explainer video to be successful, it must speak to the audience in a language they understand and reciprocate the most.
2. The script complements your video’s visual style
Depending on the goals of your client, your explainer video can have different visual styles. If the goal of the video is to create a personal relationship with the target audience then a Live-Action video is the best choice. On the other hand, if the video aims to invoke certain emotions in the audience than a multidimensional video would allow for the details required for that. Similarly, if you need to elaborate on your services or product features then a Whiteboard explainer video would fulfill your need.
But as a scriptwriter, you must be mindful of something very important! Your script must perfectly adapt to the visual style of your video as both require perfect synchronization. If it is a 2D or 3D animation video, a story-telling writing style would be most appropriate while in case of a Live-Action video a more direct and conversational script style would be more suitable. A good way to match your script with the visuals is by creating a two-column table with both the visual and script details side by side. This technique will ensure that you write as per the feel, timings, and sequence of your visuals.
3. Your explainer video tells a story that is ‘Truly Unique’
Your explainer video story is more than just entertainment for the viewers. The goal is to create a world where the usage of your product or service can actually be visualized. In order to really appeal to your audience and hold their attention your story must stand out of the clutter; it needs to be ‘truly unique’. A truly unique story is the one that perfectly captures your brand’s core message, positioning, philosophy and points of difference from the competitors.
Your audience needs to know what sets you apart from others. Your business must solve a problem nobody else does or address it in a way that is fresh and unique. If you are offering free support services for 3 months and your competitor isn’t, you must let your audience know about it. This makes it simple for people to choose you over others.
4. Your video speaks the language of your brand
A good starting point for a scriptwriter is to make a list of words that are used by the brand. A brand’s language really strengthens its identity and using it in the explainer video allows people to associate all the positive characteristics of the video with the brand and vice versa. The scriptwriter can use the brand’s language throughout the script wherever appropriate to amplify the effect created by the video.
5. You are giving your audience a reason to watch
A good rule of thumb to retain the attention of your audience is to emphasize their pain points in the first 20 seconds of the video. Once you make your audience feel understood entirely, they will be more willing to hear you out. Excellent execution of this strategy is the Trip Case travel app explainer video.
The narrator articulates all the many problems she faces while traveling, including the hassle and chaos of organizing her reservations and booking. The video continues to subtly point at these problems till the end, making their audience feel understood and giving them a reason to watch.
6. You are clarifying the existing solutions
This is also a part of making your audience feel understood while also educating them at the same time. If any competing products or services are addressing the same problems that you do, you need to inform your audience precisely what it is that they are offering. This then helps you position yourself as the company which addresses these problems most effectively.
7. You are giving your audience ‘a bait’
You have convinced your audience that you are the best in the biz, now what? All your efforts will go in vain if your audience does not take immediate action. To really hook your audience, you should offer them a trial version or a free limited-time subscription. This motivates your audience to actually try out and live your product or service, which brings us to the last item in our checklist for your video script.
8. You are showing them where to reach you
Last but not the least essential item in your explainer video checklist is the link or the contact information where your audience can reach you. In addition to including this information as text in the video, it can also be narrated by voice-over artists for more significant impact.
Top 3 storytelling methods for explainer videos
Now that you know what to include in the content of your video script let’s have a look at how to structure it. There are 3 different methods which you can use to tell the story of your product or service. Let’s have a detailed look at all of them.
1. The character method
This method is best used if you intend to educate and inform your audience at the same time. In this method of storytelling, you introduce a character who is facing the same problems as your target audience. As the audience warms up and relates to character, they will also be able to better connect with your product and service. The character can be anyone as long as it is simple and relatable.
2. The magic potion method
This method is best used when the problem is too common, or your product is one of its kind. In this method of storytelling, you mainly focus on the desirability and uniqueness of your product or service. The aim is to make the audience look at your solution as the magic potion they have always needed to solve their problem.
3. The one-size-fits-all method
This method is best suited for companies targeting a very diverse audience. In this method, you will show as many as possible settings, uses, and users of your product or service as possible. This method makes your ad appealing to a wide variety of audiences who might become your customers.
How to brainstorm video concepts? (Developing a problem solver mindset)
Brainstorming video concepts is a crucial part of the video development process. It determines the entire framework, appearance, and direction of your explainer video. While on the surface it does seem counterintuitive to say that there can be certain set ways to accomplish this creative task, people who are in this field agree that some practices do indeed help them draft more effective ideas more quickly. Let’s look at how the process of brainstorming video concepts can be improved.
1. Start by understanding the brief
When you sit down to brainstorm your explainer video concept make sure you have the video brief in hand. The brief lists down the goal of the video or how it intends to make its audience feel. The brief also lists down some rough pointers about how the video is going to look, whether it will be a Live Camera video or a screen recording based on the goals of the video. All this information is a prerequisite to making a great video concept and you should definitely equip yourself with it before you start with the brainstorming process.
2. Eliminate all distractions
The brainstorming process requires time and focus. If you are constantly worried about your friend’s impending call on your cell phone or the email that you were supposed to answer, you will not be able to give the brainstorming session your 100%. If you want to produce ideas which have finesses and appeal, try to eliminate all possible distractions before you get down to the brainstorming session.
3. Keep the ball of ideas rolling
As the ideas pop in your head, keep jotting them down on a whiteboard or a piece of paper. If something about that idea bothers you or doesn’t sit well in that particular moment, don’t spend too much time on refining it during this step and just keep the ball of ideas rolling. Once you have everything down on paper you can always return to the idea that required additional thinking and get on with refining it further.
4. Be ready to sacrifice a mediocre idea
If your idea is excellent but just doesn’t meet the objectives of the video and there is no possible way to fix that, be ready to sacrifice it and proceed to another idea. Getting stuck during the creative process is futile and can be a source of significant time and resource wastage. Don’t let your ego come in the way when searching for that winning idea. A video concept is the backbone of your explainer video so make sure you go for the most solid one possible!
5. Refine, Refine, Refine
Once you have a winning video concept idea refine it till it becomes absolutely perfect and flawless to you. Coming up with a winning video concept requires time and patience so don’t rush the process. After all, this video concept can be the difference between your video just not making the cut or in the alternate scenario being so viral that you feel proud of yourself for doing the amazing work.
How to make explainer video script more engaging
Now that we have looked at the content and structure of the explainer videos let’s check out the possible ways to make these videos more engaging. Some of the tried and tested techniques are:
1. Keep your tone active and your sentences short
Rather than speaking in a passive tone, try to use a more casual and conversational flow. Causal sentences are sharp and crisp. Try using first-person plural pronouns. Observe the difference between the two sentences below.
“People throughout the world have felt the harmful consequences of global warming every day.”
“We feel the devastating consequences of global warming every day.”
The second sentence not only personalizes the problem but also makes it more impactful and readable.
2. Use illustrative words and statistics
Certain words immediately make us visualize things. Using these words dramatically enhances the effect of the explainer video message. Instead of saying ‘highly populated street, consider saying ‘jam-packed street.’ The latter is more likely to create a sketch in the mind of the listeners.
Using illustrative statistics also helps. When quoting survey results, try to depict them as people rather than percentages. Consider the two sentences below:
“70% of the people showed their full satisfaction with our network.”
“7 in 10 people are fully satisfied with our network.”
3. Keep your tone positive
People like to hear and see positive things. Negative thoughts are just hard to process. While framing your sentences, avoid pointing at the limitations and drawbacks, instead focus on what is available now that was not available earlier. Even while comparing yourself with your competitors, focus more on what you have rather than what they don’t.
4. Use humor appeal
Unless your product is somehow related to very severe or somber issues, adding a little light-heartedness in your explainer video will make it more memorable. Using good humor also shows your audience how creative and dedicated you are to them and the business. Feel free to give them a few laughs, which will also help them remember your brand more positively.
5. Use just the right number of words
An average person speaks around 125 words per minute. For your explainer video, you will be hiring a professional voice-over artist. These professionals can speak more than 200 words per minute but don’t be tempted to cramp up your video with words. Using 160 – 180 words in a minute-long explainer video slot will give your audience just the right amount of information they can quickly process and understand.
You are now equipped with all the right techniques and methods to craft a perfect explainer video. Remember that explainer videos are the most desired type of videos by audiences these days, and an ideal script will help you strike all the right chords with them. Don’t wait up any further and go make an explainer video for your brand right this instant.