Your explainer video doesn’t work and here’s why!

4 May, 2017  

You’ve finally made up your mind and got an explainer video made for your company. You were already dreaming of the corporate video benefits and imagining what you were going to do with all the new leads. But time has passed and you aren’t seeing any change. Did the explainer video company rip you off?

There are several factors that can explain why you aren’t reaping any benefits from your explainer video. Perhaps you’re marketing it wrong. Maybe it doesn’t have enough visibility. Or it might be that the problem is the video itself. Chances are that the latter is the problem you’re having. Here are some of the reasons why that may be the case.

Video marketing guide for 2020

The video quality is downright awful

You know that feeling you get when you watch an old or low budget sci-fi film? The one that makes you cringe and laugh from embarrassment at how horrible the special effects are? Well, maybe you don’t want to hear this but this could be the reason that’s killing your video.

As with those movies, the low quality can be responsible for your audience not taking you seriously – and bailing out on you. Unless you’re aiming for that kind of thing (the Sharknado scenario), then you can’t accept a marketing video with poor animation techniques or inferior design. If you truly want to be taken seriously, then you need to show your best face to the crowd.

How can you know if your video is suffering from this? You’d think that a quick look would be enough but that’s not always the case. What you think looks good might not work for your target audience. So, it’s time to turn to data!

YouTube has an amazing feature in its Analytics called Audience retention report. With it, you can measure how your audience behaves while they watch your video. You can check the average view duration, how it compares to the performance of similar videos and, most importantly, the retention data for different timeframes. If you see people are leaving after a few seconds, then you’ll know you have a weak video on your hands.

The video isn’t customized

Company videos need to do more than just look good – they need to be a showcase for the brand. If your video is eye candy but can’t be traced back to you, then it’s useless. As with every marketing trick you pull, the best explainer videos are the ones that put the brand right in front of your eyes from the first second. This is their ultimate purpose: to get you remembered.

Besides, a customized animated video can click with its intended audience more quickly. It’s something different, unique, and something that was developed with them in mind. Among the loads and loads of lookalikes, a video that sets out to be distinctive can make a bigger impact and be more easily remembered. Which leads us to the next point – video templates.

I won’t argue that using pre-designed video snippets and animations can be cheaper than doing the whole thing from scratch. But what you’re saving there will have its price somewhere else (namely, how exclusive your videos actually are). Using video templates is the equivalent of using image banks to build a website – they can look good but you’ll end up looking like hundreds of other companies out there.

With all this in mind, take a good look at your videos. Assuming they look nice, be honest – how close are they of showing your brand’s true spirit? Can you find your own company’s voice anywhere? Is it truly different from what your competitors are doing or is it just another video with ukuleles and whistling? Check this one fully customized for Gigtown:

The video is way too long

There’s a very popular saying in Spanish-speaking countries that goes something like ‘the good, if brief, is twice as good.’ The saying has been around for centuries because it simply holds a lot of truth. In other words, a strong video doesn’t need to last for minutes on end to cause an impact.

You may be tempted to develop a long company video. There might be more information than you can cram in a 1-minute video. Perhaps you want to tell a story to get  your point across. You might even think that, given how we’ve grown accustomed to watching movies and TV shows online, then there won’t be a problem with making a longer video. It sounds logical – but it doesn’t relate to reality.

Fortunately, data comes to the rescue once again. New research has found that engagement is constant up to 2 minutes and starts to drop after that. As long as you don’t go over that mark, it won’t matter if you go for a 30-second video or a 90-second video. Our digitized brains have shorter and shorter attention spans now, so keeping it brief will always be a safe bet.

You should also take your audience into account when thinking about the video length. The so-called millennials are more comfortable with very short videos (thanks Instagram!) while older people tend to favor 30-second videos and beyond. Of course, the length of an explainer video will also depend on how much you have to explain but you shouldn’t shrug these numbers off.

Time to go back to your explainer video – is it longer than 2 minutes? Then maybe that’s where it is failing. Trimming around the edges can greatly improve its performance. Head back to the YouTube Audience retention tool to see what happens in each frame after the 2 minute mark. The results will surely surprise you.

How to make an animated video

The video is poorly scripted

Your videos have incredible animations. They couldn’t be attributed to any other company besides yours. They are even shorter than the 2-minute mark. Why the heck aren’t they working, then? There’s a problem that’s trickier to spot but can have devastating effects – a poor script.

There are 3 main problems that can have their origins in a bad script:

  • The video isn’t properly structured

A corporate video is a small story. If you don’t follow a narrative, the result might be incomprehensible or confuse your audience about what they can expect from you.

  •  The video is too focused on your company 

And not on your audience’s problems. Your company exists to address a need. Talking only about you without mentioning the need will take its toll on your engagement. People are looking for solutions, not your history.

  • The video is dull
    Pacing problems, a monotone story, characters without appeal. If your script is weak, then it’s impossible for it to spark any interest once it becomes a video.

Getting the right script is one of the hardest tasks in the explainer video production process. That’s why you’d be wise to always hire a professional to manage it. Or, at the very least, read something about it to avoid the issues mentioned above (you can get Yum Yum’s free eBook “How To Write An Explainer Video Script” for a detailed look into this critical stage).

The video is ‘hidden’

Finally, there’s one more reason why your videos might be failing – people can’t find them! It isn’t enough to just upload it to YouTube with relevant tags. You need to actively market it, get it out there, make it as visible as you possibly can.

Sharing it regularly in social media (and making it your featured video on those platforms) is a must. But you should also know where to place it. Don’t just put your video on some page on the website – put it on your homepage! People love videos, so don’t hide them! Turn them into one of the first things visitors see when they drop by your site.


Videos are an invaluable marketing material and you should pay special attention to what you do with them. If you find that your corporate video is now buried in your About us page, then get it out of there and place it into your homepage. I can guarantee you’ll see how it starts to perform better almost instantly.

Our experience at Yum Yum Videos has shown us that all of these issues are the most frequent causes of why explainer videos fail. It’s no coincidence that all of them appear in some way or the other when you don’t work with a professional explainer video company. That’s why we urge you to seek out the help you need to get the most out of your marketing videos.

And before you say it, yeah, it can end up costing a little bit more. But given the huge difference a high-quality video can make, I believe the explainer video price is more than fair for what you’ll be getting. Think of it as an investment that, if done poorly, can end up costing you a lot more simply because you’ll have to throw everything out and restart the whole process.

Have you identified some of these issues with your videos? We can help! Yum Yum Videos is an experienced video development company that makes high quality videos that fit any budget. We work with a very professional team of scriptwriters, narrators and animators that will make sure you stand out from the crowd. Check out some of our work below – and give us a call!


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