Don’t Use a Whiteboard Animation Video! (Until You Read This)





Do you think adding a whiteboard video to your marketing strategy is a great idea? Well, you might want to reconsider after reading this! 😉

Don’t get us wrong, whiteboard animation can do a bunch of great things under the right conditions (learn more about it here), but it’s hardly the go-to style in most marketing scenarios!

Today, we’ll tell you all about when not to go with a whiteboard video (and a bit about when you should), to keep you from wasting time and resources in a piece that’s just not meant to deliver on what you may need.

Let’s jump right in!

1. If You Want a Colorful Video

Think of whiteboard cartoons as a genre, like in the movies. Genres tell you what you can expect even before you watch something. If you go see a western, you expect cowboy hats and duels at high noon. If you go see a Marvel movie, you expect to see shirtless Chris Evans (don’t worry, we all do 🤩).

When a movie fails to deliver on those expectations, we walk away disappointed and call it bad (especially in Evans’ case). We say “it didn’t feel” like the type of movie we wanted to see.

Same thing with whiteboard animation videos.

The black-on-white aesthetics aren’t there to save costs on ink; it’s actually a mnemonic device that helps viewers understand and remember your message! Get rid of it, and you no longer have a whiteboard video on your hands.

If you imagine a lot of vibrant colors splashing around the screen when you think about your video, then whiteboard animation is probably not what you are looking for.

2. If You Need a Short Video (60 seconds or less)

A whiteboard video’s primary goal is to tell your message using storytelling and clever visuals to make it understandable and memorable. That involves giving those elements enough time to breathe (and sink in) between transitions. To “erase the board,” if you will, before jumping into the next scene.

If you need a quick in-and-out video ad or marketing piece that lasts a minute or less in length, just don’t use a whiteboard animation video. This slower-paced style needs a bit more time than that to work.

3. If You Are Reaching Out to a Younger Audience

Whiteboard animation uses a minimalist black-and-white aesthetic and a slower pace to do what they do best. It’s what makes them such a powerful tool to explain your ideas.

The problem is that those elements aren’t very appealing to younger audiences, who usually prefer shorter, visually rich content – like this social media ad we made!

 

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If you want to reach out to and engage a Gen-Z or younger audience, whiteboard animation shouldn’t be your go-to.

4. If the Message is Simple

The thing about whiteboard animation is that it’s great to explain complex concepts in a really simple way. But what happens when your message is already… simple? Going for this style is probably a bad move.

Think of it in terms of complementary opposites: uncomplicated topics benefit from visually rich, elaborate videos, while a complex idea is easier explained with a smoother, uncluttered piece.

Whiteboard videos are all about effective simplicity: eliminating distractions to keep the viewer’s attention where you want it. If your message is already pretty straightforward, it’ll probably benefit from a flashier video style 😉

5. If You Want to Make an Impression

“Minimalist”, “cartoony”, “uncluttered”… all go hand-in-hand with the whiteboard animation style. “Stunning”, “vibrant”, “dazzling”? Hmm… Not so much.

If, when you think about your video, you want some spectacular piece that impresses viewers in seconds with dynamic visuals and fast-paced shots, you should go for something else than a whiteboard video.

6. If You Are Looking for Emotional Impact

There are plenty of marketing video styles and techniques you can use to pull at your audience’s heartstrings. Whiteboard videos ain’t one of them.

Yes, there are plenty of emotive black-and-white videos out there, but remember what we said about genre: If your video doesn’t have the staple elements that make it a whiteboard video, it’s something else entirely.

Now, it’s worth mentioning that humor is a common ingredient in the whiteboard cartoon formula (we’ll talk about it in a minute). But other than that, this style isn’t the best at provoking an emotional response in the viewer.

If you think the emotional impact is a vital piece of your video’s puzzle, then there are better styles out there than a whiteboard explainer video for you.

7. If You Need a Short Video Ad

A compelling advertising videoor video ad, for short – has to be impactful and short to work (60 seconds or less, remember?). And if we are talking about social media ads, you have even less time to work with – even YouTube keeps non-skippable ads below the 20-seconds mark!

They are meant to get in quickly, have people thinking about your brand, and get out before overstaying their welcome.

As we mentioned before, whiteboard animation videos need more time than that to really be effective. So, if you are working with a limited time window, try a different style for your video ad instead 😄

8. If You Need to Showcase a Product’s Features

Product videos are a specific type of marketing video designed to show your product’s key value propositions. Not to be confused with explainers – which use a storytelling formula to convey a message – product videos are all about displaying your product’s features in practical scenarios.

More often than not, we use live-action footage and 3D animation for physical products and screencap footage or 2D animation for products like apps or software platforms.

If you want to show viewers that your product can do everything they are looking for and more by showcasing its features, a whiteboard animation video is probably not the style you are looking for.

 

And there you have it, friends 😁 If you find yourself in any of the situations we covered above, just do yourself a favor and consider using something other than a whiteboard animation video! There are plenty of other styles that will fit your needs better.

Now, let’s talk about some situations when the whiteboard animation style is second-to-none!

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When Is It a Good Idea to Use a Whiteboard Animation Video?

As you probably know by now, the whiteboard video style was developed and optimized to tackle a number of tricky but crucial marketing objectives. And do so exceptionally well.

Let’s talk a bit about what this style of video can do for you!

1. Tackle complex explanations:

The whiteboard animation technique shines at condensing and delivering a lot of information quickly and effectively. The animated drawings help you organize and communicate information, improve retention, and keep viewers’ attention glued to the screen.

Its simple style helps you build a visual dialogue that uses metaphors and conceptualizations to convey a lot of meaning with little effort.

In short, whiteboard videos give you a way to make the complex, simple.

2. Establish your brand as an expert:

Whiteboard explainer videos simulate an interaction that most people can recognize and relate to; having a teacher explaining something to their students using a white board as a visual aid.

By taking that familiar premise and enhancing it with a clever and memorable script, interesting drawings, and entertaining transitions, you can create something that’s not only useful but also compelling and fun!

3. Educate and inform your audience:

Since whiteboard cartoon videos excel at information delivery, it’s not surprising they are perfect for educational video content.

Educational videos are ideal for audiences at the Awareness Stage of your sales funnel and are meant to provide industry-relevant information that ties into your brand and products. Using the whiteboard style can help you nurture your leads, bringing your audience closer to doing business with your company.

4. Produce a longer video:

While most marketing videos sit around the 90-second mark, sometimes that’s not enough to communicate to your audience everything you need.

Given that whiteboard videos use storytelling, fluid illustrations, and slower-paced transitions to carry your message, they are ideal for longer content that can take full advantage of the style’s benefits and keep viewers watching all the way through.

5. Use humor:

Humor and whiteboard cartoons are a match made in heaven 😍. The style gives you plenty of opportunities to inject humor through animated graphics, and its draw-and-erase transitions are perfect to set up and pay off funny situations. Add to that a clever script with good comedic timing, and you have a video your viewers won’t forget!

6. Use explainer videos:

After all, they are called whiteboard explainer videos for a good reason 😉

Explainer videos are perfect to describe and illustrate what you need to say – in terms of your brand, company, products, etc. – in ways that are both easy to understand and entertaining to watch. “Whiteboard video” is one of the most popular styles of explainer videos, and outside the cases we mentioned before, they are perfect to easily communicate things to your audience in ways that are harder for them to forget.

All in all, a very effective formula, if we do say so ourselves! 😎

Whiteboard Animation Video Best Practices

So, you weighed the Dos and Don’ts of whiteboard explainer videos and decided you wanted one. Now, you also want to know a bit more about how to do them right?

Sure, we can help with that as well! 😊

1. Use detailed animations:

The whiteboard video style has come a long way since we used to draw on a whiteboard while recording the explanations. And even though that was good enough for the times, the massive advance in digital tools (animation boards, vector graphic editors, etc.) makes it so that the traditional way is just no longer enough to meet your audience’s expectations – or capture their attention 😋

Using professional-level, detailed animations to your whiteboard explainer video not only makes it more appealing and memorable, but it sends a better message in terms of the quality of your content, and by extension, your brand.

2. Add connected transitions:

The whiteboard technique is all about maintaining on-screen continuity and minimizing scene cuts and interruptions— each scene is usually connected to the next by elements that remain from a previous one. Adding connected transitions helps form a sense of flowing continuity that keeps viewers hooked. Like this:

3. Include a drawing hand:

While not mandatory, having a simulated hand producing your video’s drawings is a staple of the whiteboard style for a reason. Not only does it add a bit to the viewer’s immersion, but it also helps underline scene progression and transitions within the piece.

So, even though we do things digitally now, maintaining the iconic drawing hand is a useful and respectful nod to the roots of the whiteboard video style, and it’s worth keeping around.

 

4. Hire a professional whiteboard video company:

Having a professional explainer video production company involved with your project will make a world of difference in terms of quality and results. While the style looks simple from the outside (and it is indeed designed to seem that way), there is a lot of nuance to producing a high-quality whiteboard animation video that gets the job done.

Remember, these videos are often the first point of contact between a potential client and your brand, and a low-quality piece can send the wrong message and start that relationship with the wrong foot.

Our advice? If you need a video for personal use, it’s ok to go with a DIY approach. But if we are talking about content to boost your marketing results, you’ll want to talk with an experienced company to help you out.

 

Wrapping Up

While an awesome whiteboard cartoon video can do plenty of things for you and your brand, the style isn’t a great fit for any marketing situation!

If you just need a short ad, want a colorful video, or simply have some ideas for your piece that don’t mesh well with the style’s conventions, there’s probably a better alternative out there for you.

Make the most out of your whiteboard videos by using them as top-of-the-funnel evergreen educational content or to explain complex topics, and we promise you won’t be disappointed with the results! 😉

 

About Yum Yum Videos

Yum Yum Videos has grown from a small video production company to become a leading video agency, providing quality video marketing content such as explainers, educational videos, product videos, tutorials, social videos, whiteboard videos, and more!

Bringing an out-of-the-box type of thinking while remaining flexible and down-to-earth, we are simply passionate about making videos that taste different 😁

If you want a video to engage your audience and deliver results, get in touch!

 

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