Does Your Nonprofit Need an Explainer Video?

Following is a guest post from my good friend Christine Green.

You’ve seen explainer videos. They’ve been around for a while but this year we’re seeing an explosion of these short, power-packed, emotionally compelling animated videos.

Explainer videos usually have no talking heads or live footage. Instead, these videos are studio-produced using motion graphics, photographs, text on screen, background music and sometimes narration.

The key factor is that these videos are visual and short – sometimes very short.

Who the heck wants to read these days?

Why spend 15-20 minutes “browsing” a website when a great explainer video on the homepage will do all the work for you in a fraction of the time?

When expertly crafted with the perfect combination of narrative, images, motion graphics, and text, the result is a multi-messaging that is comprehended by the brain without strain.

Enough words…take a look.

Here’s an explainer video about explainer videos:

Explainer videos can be viewed without sound

Most of your web visitors and potential donors will view your site and your content on a mobile device. And they may view it while in an environment where they can’t turn on the audio.

Can you imagine the impact of a short visual message that can be easily understood without sound? Yeah, explainer videos can give your organization a leg up.

Here’s another example to view. This one is a professional introduction video created for a consultant who was just going out on her own after working in a consulting firm for many years.

Explainer videos are easy on the eye

Another advantage is that even with a serious subject, they are usually a pleasure to watch – they have interesting images and graphics, and can also be a bit whimsical (within reason and depending on the nonprofit).

If you create an enjoyable experience for your target audience, they are more likely to take in your complete message and consequently be inspired by your call to action.

Crafting an effective explainer video

The special requirement is that these videos need precision crafting. They have a lot of moving parts…literally! For full effectiveness, it’s important that the message not be presented too quickly or at a pace that’s too slow.

For the best results, all the moving parts must be synchronized to the micro-second. And then, of course, all of this is wrapped around an effective marketing concept that’s crafted into the perfect script – whether there is narration or only screen text.

How can nonprofits benefit from explainer videos?

Fundraising campaigns:

  • Website homepage intro video
  • For specific upcoming events
  • For an annual appeal – a video that can be used again each year

Testimonials that don’t require live video:

  • A photograph of the person giving the testimonial
  • Text on screen of the wonderful praise they offer
  • Other inspiring images or graphics that augment their message

For your Volunteers:

  • A pitch video to recruit volunteers
  • Then one or more for orientation and training
  • Saving your staff time for other activities
  • Available to be viewed as often as needed

I can already see the wheels in your head turning – generating ideas of how you might use animated videos!

Click here to view more examples and learn more about explainer videos.

John Haydon