When it comes to boosting your website’s performance, nothing is quite as effective as video. In fact, recent research by Unbounce indicates that adding a short video clip to a landing page can increase conversion by up to 80%. It’s also a powerful way to drive brand recognition and develop trust, both of which are effective for closing the sale. And since Google gives priority to video content, it’ll also improve the chances of your business being found online. More leads equal more potential sales and a better bottom line for your business.
But what if you don’t have the time, resources or budget to create an actual video? No problem. The good news is animated video clips perform just as good if not better than real video on landing pages, which is to say they can dramatically increase conversion rates. And because animated videos are relatively easy to make (much easier than regular videos), businesses of every size and industry can leverage them without having to invest a significant amount of time or money.
Let’s take a look at how you can leverage animated video to achieve the same or maybe even better results.
What is Animated Video?
Businesses are now leveraging animation to help tell their story in a quick, fun and engaging way. These short video clips are often referred to as explainer videos because they’re essentially used to explain a business idea through animation. Explainer videos are typically used to help website visitors better understand what your business is and what it has to offer.
Why is Animated Video So Effective?
There are plenty of theories as to why animation videos are such powerful marketing tools. One of the biggest reasons is the fact that they are short and engaging enough to hold our limited attention spans, which at last check came in at around 8 seconds. Yes, you read that right. That means businesses have mere seconds to capture the attention of their target audience, deliver their message and issue a call to action, whatever that CTA might be. A brief, entertaining video clip can be just the trick.
Video content is also highly effective because it’s shareable. One study indicated that video content is 12x more likely to be shared on social media than links and text combined. The more people share your content, the more additional leads you’ll be able to reach.
How Can I Use Animated Videos?
Now that you know how effective animated video can be, the next step is figuring out just how you can harness this technology for your own business. In reality, you can use explainer videos for just about anything your heart desires. Some ideas include:
- Telling visitors what your business is all about. Let your target audience know what they can expect if they choose to work with you.
- Explaining how to use a product or service you provide. An instruction manual simply can’t hold a candle to a powerful animated tutorial.
- Conveying the message about your mission. What matters most to you? How is your business making an impact on the world? What sets you apart? Don’t just write about it on your website. Bring it to life through animation and really make that connection.
It’s not really so much what content you use in your videos as much as how effectively you deliver your message.
To that end, here are a few expert tips to help improve the likelihood of your explainer videos getting real, measurable and sustainable results:
Know your audience
First and foremost, if you want your animated videos to be effective, you have to tailor them to your ideal customers. Who are they? What are their preferences and pain points? For example, is your audience a small business owner trying to get more people into his physical store? Or, perhaps your audience is an entrepreneur who is looking to test his idea before spending money on development. Understanding this will help you hone your message so that your audience can relate to it.
Write it out
You can’t really build your animation until you know the message you want to convey. Make an outline with each bullet point representing a slide. Now add the main idea you want to convey for each slide to that bullet point. For best results, have someone who doesn’t work for your company draft something up. This outsider perspective can help produce content that is easily understood and therefore more likely to be received well by others.
Stand out from the crowd
Chances are you’re not the only business in your industry that’s using animation in your marketing strategy, so the key is to find a way to make yours stand out from the rest. The average attention span of a human today is merely 8 seconds so your video must capture their attention and keep them engaged if it’s going to be effective. Make a list of the most important things that differentiate your business from the rest and work from there. Be creative and have fun and remember, there’s no need to reinvent the wheel.
Keep it short and sweet
Keep in mind that the less you say the more impactful and memorable your animated video will be (and the more likely people will be to watch until the end). A good rule of thumb is to use a format that covers the following information:
Problem – Identify your audience’s needs and/or pain points
Solution – Introduce your product or service as the solution to that problem
Description – Explain how and why your product or service is the answer
Call to Action – Tell viewers what you want them to do next
Assign a time limit to each of these segments and stick to it. This will ensure that your video covers the basics of your message without going on for too long and risking potentially losing the interest of your audience. The goal is to deliver just enough information to make them want to take the next step.
Focus on benefits instead of features
Marketing 101 states that the most compelling way to move someone to take action is not to tout all the amazing features of your product or service, but to show them why and how that product or service can help them, solve a problem or improve their lives. This is another reason why it can be helpful to have an “outsider” draft up your script.
Tap into emotion whenever possible
One thing that most viral videos have in common is that they trigger some type of emotion, whether it’s humor, excitement, anticipation or even fear. By carefully developing animated video content that your audience can relate to on this level, the message you’re delivering will be much more impactful (and shareable). Figure out what action you’d like your video to trigger, and then leverage the content to evoke the necessary emotion that will get them to take action. For instance, if your goal is to close the sale, create a sense of urgency that taps into “fear of missing out.”
Don’t overthink it
Many business owners and marketing managers are surprised to learn just how quick, easy and affordable it can be to create compelling animated videos. You don’t need a huge budget or a professional animator. In fact, once you have your script and know your desired style, you can use existing video templates and customize them accordingly.
According to Digital Content Next (formerly Online Publishers Association), 80% of consumers remember at least one video they’ve watched in the last 30 days, and 90% say seeing a video about a product or service is helpful in making a purchasing decision. In other words, video marketing is incredibly effective, and with the simplicity and affordability of animated video, leveraging this powerful tool for your business has never been easier.