You've seen hundreds of animated explainer videos on many different websites. They’re everywhere on the Internet!
Some people call them corporate videos and others call them animated marketing videos, but they’re all serving the same purpose: explaining a product or service in an engaging way to increase conversions (turn visitors into customers), boost visibility on Google and be easily shared on social media.
But let’s put aside the many benefits of animated marketing videos and focus on this question: once you’ve decided to have your own explainer video, which video style would you choose for your business?
Wait! Are there a lot of styles of animated explainer videos?
Indeed, animated videos can be broken down into 7 main styles, because each one of them appeals to a different type of audience. In other words: every style speaks its own language. Now let’s pick the right style for your video!
1. Screencast Video: the cheapest one.
A simple capture of a computer screen or even a smartphone can be used to showcase how your product or service works. This style of video is regularly used on educational or try-before-you-buy campaigns, so they’re usually 5minutes long to deliver a thorough explanation.
If you run a low-budget startup, this could always be a good first step while aiming for more complex videos in your next campaign.
2. Cartoon Style: the funny and lovable one.
It’s no surprise that the so-called cartoon style (AKA character animated video) is one of the most requested styles, because its custom-designed animated characters can bring emotion and personality to any brand. It catches attention quickly, is fun to watch and creates memorable tales at the same time.
Storytelling plays a major role in this kind of video: the main character (representing your brand persona) solves your audience’s problem with the help of your product or service. This is why cartoon style is a great B2C choice every single time. However, don’t forget that behind all businesses there are real people that want to connect with their audience, so this style can be wisely used for B2B companies that want a more friendly approach.
3. Whiteboard Video Animation: the classic one.
The traditional technique was made by an artist who drew on a whiteboard, while being recorded by a camera. Nowadays, these videos have become fully digital but still try to recreate the classic procedure; some companies decided to go further, adding 2D character animation and special effects.
Whiteboard videos are highly engaging because the story is being created in front of the viewer’s eyes and, due to the educational approach of the technique, they are great way to explain complex information in a straightforward style. It’s the ideal style for marketing IT solutions, computer software companies and even B2B campaigns.
4. Motion Graphics: the cool kid on the block.
The motion graphic is the art of bringing graphic design to life through animation. This style uses graphics elements (such as shapes, colors and patterns) to convey a message through an elegant movement.
It’s a great style to convey abstract or complex concepts whether it’s from a serious approach or a fun and colorful one. If you are a startup or a SMB from the financial or techie industry, this type of video can guarantee brand strength and engagement.
In addition, companies related to software, new technologies or digital services may like to add 3D elements to the traditional motion graphics style, as a way to stand out or give a more sophisticated look to their products.
5. Cartoon Style with Motion Graphics: the popular one.
This is the most popular mix of techniques in the market, getting the best of both worlds: while cartoon characters lead the story and provide a close approach with the audience, the use of motion graphics animation is used to explain the most complex concepts.
The style works extraordinary well with startups that want to present a new product or service while keeping the emotional and funny side of it. It’s perfect for explaining new mobile apps and e-commerce businesses, as well as any kind of B2C communication.
6. Claymation: the vintage one.
Claymation is one of the oldest techniques ever: handcrafted animated videos have been around for ages, but luckily their amazing results never cease to impress.
Time is the key factor when making a stop-motion animated video: these videos take longer to produce than almost any other style. Bear in mind that the animator takes a picture every time each object moves, so 30 photos results in 1 second of animation. For a typical length of 90 seconds, the average number of photos taken would be up to 2,700!
Nevertheless, Claymation is a completely original style that has a great sentimental approach for nostalgic audiences, which sometimes is worth the time and the investment.
7. 3D Animated Video: the fancy one.
There are no limits to what a 3D video production can accomplish but, of course, it’s the most expensive one, so limited-budget startups may want to leave this style alone for a while. The other issue with 3D videos is the exhausting amount of time that it takes to make changes to your video: a change of graphics could take days; an animation adjustment, even weeks.
However, when the budget and time is not a problem, the results can be outstanding. Character or motion graphics animation can also be developed in 3D with amazing results.
Now that you have learned every single animated explainer video style, you must choose the best one to boost your startup’s marketing campaigns. And believe me, they can boost them big time!