Improving Information Retention: The Importance of an Animated Explainer Video

Gone are the days of cumbersomely explaining concepts via long-winded emails, or worse, in a hastily thrown-together PowerPoint presentation. The digital world has moved on in leaps and bounds, and with it, we possess a far more sophisticated and potent method of messaging at our fingertips. In this day and age, with the aid of explainer video software, business leaders can create videos that quickly and intuitively project a message in powerful and memorable ways. The effectiveness of animated explainer videos speaks for itself: according to Hubspot, 94% of users watch explainer videos to understand a product or brand better, with 84% of viewers proceeding directly to purchase.

Here at Sliced Bread Animation, we create videos that accelerate communication, improve conceptualisation, retain audiences and conjure lasting impressions, so we know a thing or two about the importance of animated explainer videos, and how they contribute to improved information retention. In this article, we’ll be exploring this theme.

We’ll first take a closer look at what an explainer video is and why it can work so effectively, before delineating the business benefits and recommending the best place for your organisation to acquire top-quality explainer videos.

Whiteboard illustration showing how a company Creates an exceptional experience for our global talent pool, whiteboard illustration of diverse people in the park

What are Animated Explainer Videos?

At a core level, animated explainer videos take a raw idea and transform it into a compelling story. You have a vision – it could be anything, from a product demonstration to a branded message – and you need a creative, inspiring and, above all, memorable way of communicating it. This is the essence of the most awesome explainer videos; they take a concept and translate it into an intuitive visual journey.

That journey is then video-packaged and presented to your target audience in a relatable, digestible way. It’s a simple yet effective solution to capture even the most complex or nuanced ideas, marrying elements of explainer video script, various video styles and video animation, music and voiceover into a unified key message.

2D animated scientists, one on the computer, one thinking and a third with a lightbulb above their head

It is that total creative freedom that elevates animated explainers (along with whiteboard explainer videos) to a level far beyond antiquated, ‘talking head’ style videos. Creating explainer videos is about crafting illustrations, scenes, characters, visual metaphors and audio accompaniments that communicate your raw idea in a seamless, intuitive package.

The potential applications are practically endless, but some of the most popular types of explainer videos you might want to explore include:

  • Product demonstrations and walkthroughs
  • Brand awareness pieces
  • High-engagement social media assets
  • Pitching aids
  • Reporting tools
  • Top-level corporate communication (eg., for your homepage or a conference)
Whiteboard Illustration of a scientist holding test tubes and walking in front of a robot who is holding a beaker

The Science Behind an Awesome Explainer Video

Before your organisation invests in its own explainer video, you may wish to learn more about the secrets of why they are such effective information retention devices. What is it that makes explainer videos so successful? The answer is twofold, owing partly to the latent versatility of the format, and partly to the under-the-hood workings of the human brain.

The first thing to say is that an animated explainer video isn’t restricted by location or situation. They are equally as practical in a home, as they are in an office; adaptable to desktops, smartphones, or tablets; and can be deployed in the projection and conceptualisation of any idea or message. It is this versatility that allows animated explainers to reach such massive audiences, and their inherent flexibility means that they are always an appropriate, optimal format.

The second point is that they plug into, and harmonise with, the way our brains process concepts. At a core level, animated videos tell a story; this dovetails with the way we are conditioned to understand the world around us, from the stories we hear as young children, to the books we read, the way we process our formative experiences, even down to the latest shows we binge watch on Prime or Netflix. Good quality video production can elevate this further by leveraging certain elements – colours, fonts, characterisation, voices – so that the video is perfectly crafted to resonate deeply with a target audience.

Both of these aspects come together in an animated explainer video, and it is the interplay between them that makes for such an engaging and memorable medium.

3D Animated Crane Lifting a Modulek component on to Ground works

The Communicative Benefits of an Animated Video

The decision to utilise an explainer video maker, in order to visually render your idea or message, brings a range of operational and business benefits to your organisation. These include, but are not limited to:

  • Streamlining and simplifying the messaging process

Some of the most successful explainer videos are actually used to communicate a complicated (or, at least, not an instantly-understandable) idea. Why? Because they take something complex and make it easily digestible, which makes viewers feel smart and dramatically improves the accessibility of the message.

People understand things more intuitively when viewed through the prism of a professional video, whether it’s a set of instructions, a video marketing strategy, process information, promotional videos or a product display. The simplicity of messaging is one of the key features of an animated explainer video; something which may have been a challenge to communicate in another way can be made painless and enjoyable via a short video.

  • Making something your audience will remember

Capturing your viewer’s attention is one thing; keeping it, and ensuring your message stays in their mind even after the fact, is quite another. A top-quality video does more than simply explain things in a linear, 2D, A-to-B-to-C kind of way; by utilising clever animation styles you can bring your message to life, imbuing it with the originality, flair and zest necessary to ensure it has a deep and lasting impact.

This will, naturally, be aligned with your brand’s vision and values, so the powerful impression your video creates is deeply associated with your organisation’s identity. In other words, a professional animation explainer is engineered so that the central concept not only finds its target, but stays there long after the video has ended.

  • Producing an infinitely-reusable asset

Short videos are by no means a one-and-done entity. You can turn specific elements of an explainer video – or indeed the whole thing – to any number of outlets, representing incredible ROI, the potential for limitless conversion rates, and a piece of creative collateral that keeps on giving.

Perfect example: you create a product demonstration video to show potential customers, during the testing and development stage. The product proves a hit, and you make the decision to mass produce it. You can pull segments of the video to release on your social media channels, and use it on a new, product-dedicated page on your website. From there, you might find one section of the video so succinct and compelling that you implement it on your homepage – that section might become your signature video introduction, and you roll it out across all your visual marketing material, eventually using it to spark instant brand awareness in stores and at conferences.

At least, that’s how we do things. At Sliced Bread Animation, we’ll create an animation for you which you’re free to adapt however you see fit. You own the licence; it’s your video, and we can help you modify or re-render it, whatever your goals may be. Contact us today for a chat about your next project.

  • Optimising your business processes and efficiencies

If your organisation is aiming to streamline or modernise the way it operates, there’s no better way to communicate this to your teams than via a fun, engaging explainer video. This style of company-wide messaging can massively reduce the time and resources needed for training, as well as cut down on inconsistencies and other uncertainties.

For instance, rather than giving a lengthy ‘company culture’ talk on a Friday afternoon, when some staff may already have their minds on the weekend and others couldn’t make it due to various commitments, you could deliver the same message in a short, sweet, and compelling video, one that can be referred back to at any time.

Conceptualise with Clarity

As we’ve seen, an animated explainer can be an incredibly powerful communication tool and massively increases the amount of information your audience retains. Hopefully, by now, you have a strong idea about what an explainer video is, how and why they work so well, and the gains you stand to make by using them. You might even have one or two ideas about videos your company could roll out!

But there is a catch to this. The real secret to a powerful explainer video is in the quality of its execution. In order to be successful, it has to be crafted with skill, professionalism and attention to detail. And that’s where we come in. Based in London, Sliced Bread Animation a multi-disciplined digital animation studio staffed by a highly-skilled team of passionate creatives. The work we deliver for our clients cultivates engaging and immersive communication for optimum effectiveness – just take a look at our past work.

If you think your organisation could benefit from animated explainer videos, or you have some big ideas for your next project, get in touch with us now to chat about it.

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