7 Common Explainer Video Mistakes that Hinder Conversions

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If your company relies on explainer videos to act as a brand ambassador to your company, then that video needs to convert viewers into customers. A mediocre video simply won’t do. It’s got to be good or, better yet, great.

Here are seven common mistakes to avoid in your explainer videos that could prevent it from converting viewers into clients or customers.

No Hook

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An explainer video can’t afford to have a slow start. We talked last week about how you have approximately three seconds to hook someone with your video, particularly when they’re watching on a phone. While you don’t need to necessarily make it overly flashy, it should be engaging because you only have a tiny fraction of time to grab a viewer’s attention.

No matter how long your video is, the first 10 seconds are by far the most important part. It’s not a movie or a book or a TV show where you can set the scene and ease into things. You’ve got to get to the hook quickly.


Martin Abegglen/Flickr

While it’s tempting to approach your explainer video as an ad, that’s going to be a huge turn-off for a lot of viewers. Your video should give the viewer some value. That value might be letting them know your company exists and what it does and how it does it better than your competitors, but don’t make it too sales-y or you’ll lose the viewer with an eye-roll and a disgusted sigh.

The Viewer Isn’t Considered

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While you may have a grand vision for your explainer video and you’ve bounced that idea off everyone in your office and they all love it, have you considered who the video is actually being made for? It’s not being made for you or anyone else in your office. It’s not even being made for your company. It’s being made for the viewer and everything in the video should be considered from the viewer’s perspective.

You may know all the terms used in the video, but will the viewer? All those statistics you’ve poured into it might be utterly fascinating to you, but will they interest the viewer? Will someone who is unfamiliar with your business and maybe even your industry find it appealing or will they just feel overwhelmed and confused?

Your video can’t just be a bunch of highlights about your business. It has to connect with viewers and draw them in.

Poor Branding


You don’t need to have your logo in the very first frame, but your video should be branded so people know it’s your company. Aside from your logo, incorporating your brand’s color scheme and other visual elements that differentiate your brand from others will help identify it as your video and not some third-party advertisement sitting on your site.

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Incorrect Tone

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How you say something is just as important — maybe even more important — than what you say. A funeral home with a cartoon mascot would convey the wrong tone to prospective clients, just as a tax-themed children’s restaurant would. The tone of your video helps viewers decide how they should think and feel about your message as it’s being explained. Is it a serious message? One of hope? Frivolous? The tone will help convey that.

Inconsistent Feel

Eden, Janine and Jim/Flickr

The video should feel cohesive and have a certain flow to it. Even if there are different scenes, the look, message and tone should all be similar between them. Although you can put in some surprises to keep things intriguing, everything should look like it belongs in that particular video. Handle these moments with greater care to make sure you’re keeping things consistent.

Lack of CTA

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You can’t just assume that viewers will know what you want them to do next, so it’s imperative that you have a call to action at the end of your video. It can be calling a number, clicking a link, using a hashtag or a number of other things, but give them an indication of what they should do next.

Avoid these seven common pitfalls of explainer videos and you’ll more easily turn viewers into leads and leads into clients. We can help you make the ideal explainer video and to start off, we can even tell you approximately how much it will cost. Click here to use our price estimation calculator to see approximately how much your video will cost. (You don’t even need to talk to anyone!)

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