Animated explainer videos are short-form, highly effective marketing videos that feature a company or organization's products, services, or mission statement. This post explores 25 of the best examples we could find across the internet.
We've curated this list to highlight different approaches by some of the most successful brands worldwide. After viewing each video and reading our analysis, you will better understand the elements necessary for an effective campaign.
Our first video is from AuroraFS, the first decentralized file system built for metaverse technologies. The video demonstrates the importance of understanding your target market.
AuroraFS's production team chose a fast-paced voice-over, futuristic visuals, and technical script writing. They don't waste time explaining their complex product in laymen's terms because their audience is already knowledgeable in the space and looking for the next ground-breaking technology.
The best explainer videos focus on the target market. Some companies may appeal to a large audience, and others have to hone in on the segment that will lead to conversions. In this example, AuroraFS does a great job appealing to viewers likely to be interested in navigating the metaverse.
Out of our top explainers, Paddle provides the best example of blending animation with still photography and live-action. The method is great for creating a unique look and establishing common ground with viewers.
Paddle uses animated text and examples of its UI while presenting live-action shots of users. In addition, the animators use a 1980s-style filter and imagery of remote workers to build off the contrast between the 2 mediums.
Spatial gives us an example of the power of color.
The animators use bold, consistent imagery to create different scenes and drive the brand's value proposition. Spatial's explainer begins with various rooms with compatible color pallets. Then, as we are led through unique spaces, immersive audio is added to create a different experience.
Spatial's animators choose distinct color pallets to represent specific environments, moods, and opportunities to improve the spaces with enhanced audio.
4. Montblanc X Device
While color can brighten up the frames of an animated explainer video, it's not the only way to captivate your target audience. Montblanc accomplishes producing an amazing explainer using 100% black and white.
Choosing monochromatic sketch animation was probably an easy choice for the premium ink pen manufacturer; however, just because you aren't selling writing utensils doesn't mean you can't draw inspiration from the beautifully designed video.
Novartis takes a similar approach in style as the animators at Paddle. But instead of using a combination of motion graphics and live-action, the product explainer video creates a contrast using collage animation.
The animators use a simple background with textured still images to explain the gene therapy product using a relatable analogy. The collage-style will stand out in your viewer's timeline and keep them entertained to the last frame.
Your animation style should be a representation of your brand.
While some of the best animated videos use simple animation, taking a highly technical approach can be extremely effective if you sell the right product.
For example, Aize develops sophisticated software that renders digital representations of an asset. A basic animation approach wouldn't make sense for advanced, disruptive technology.
As you can see above, Aize provides an impressive example of complex 3D modeling and flawlessly executed sound design that perfectly fits the brand and product.
Minima gives us an example of how to incorporate storytelling to explain a product. The blockchain company describes how 'decentralized' technology is rapidly becoming more and more centralized.
A character is seen embracing the new technology until a handful of parties walls it off. Then the character finds Minima and is empowered through the placement of constructing and validating nodes on mobile phones, allowing for networks to become more secure, scalable, and equitable.
10 Best Blockchain Business Explainer Videos
Next on our list of animated explainer videos is an example from Spline, a 3D design tool with a low barrier to entry. We chose the video from Spline because it demonstrates a character-driven narrative to communicate the software.
Much like Minima, Spline's designers use a character to show the struggle in the market. However, the video above takes a much more personal approach by showcasing the character's uphill battle to create 3D designs.
9. Plastic Pollution Coalition
Capturing the tone of a company or organization is another critical quality in the top explainers. Above, we have a non-profit explainer from the Plastic Pollution Coalition that does a great job tackling serious subject matter.
The video uses a somber tone to describe the necessary break-up humans need to go through with single-use plastic. While the video is serious in nature, the analogy keeps the viewer interested.
10. Sleep by Headspace
Headspace is a meditation app that uses the animated explainer video above to roll out its new Sleep feature. The animators take a creative approach to showing the app's multiple features.
By zooming into a high-rise building, viewers first see various distractions keeping the residents from getting a good night's sleep. Then, once each tenant tries a different feature from the Sleep app by Headspace, they doze off.
11. Oregon Health Authority
Animation allows you to present difficult issues in a visual representation rather than directly showing imagery of the subject manner. For example, instead of showing us actual people overdosing, Oregon Health Authority chooses to illustrate the character drowning.
12. The Nature Conservatory
Taking on a unique perspective is another way to produce highly effective animated explainer videos. The Nature Conservatory looks back at how humanity came together to fight climate change in 2021 from a future point of view.
The video is highly informative and lays out a clear plan to reduce carbon in the atmosphere by being kind to nature, but it made our list because of the producer's decision to narrate from a unique perspective.
13. Ecology Action Center
Most of the best animated explainer videos feature a solid call to action. Our example from the Ecology Action Center provides an excellent example of how to drive home an actionable request to viewers – "tell the government…that oil and gas has no place inside these spaces.”
14. Motion Design School
What better way to explain a product than literally showcasing the product in your explainer video?
While design companies have an unfair advantage, don't be afraid to show off in your product explainer video. Software and SaaS companies also have opportunities to display features with animation, giving viewers realistic expectations.
You’ll see what we mean in the next example.
Google produces some of the best animated videos in the technology sector. The explainer above demonstrates how to showcase new features to your target audience.
The tech giant uses characters navigating through their various Google applications to demonstrate its new measures to handle data deletion and retention privately and securely. In addition, utilizing characters builds a connection with viewers and helps them understand Google's unique features.
Finding a pace that matches the brand, product, or service is another critical quality of the best explainer videos. Hootsuite provides a good example of a fast-paced VO and visuals that match the video's messaging.
The explainer above uses a clear and concise script to move viewers along with the advantages of using Hootsuite's social media tools. Potential customers are looking for an organized and capable platform to help manage their socials; Hootsuite's animators help build confidence in the service with the exciting pace and well-structured script.
The TED-Ed explainer video above is a perfect example of long-form storytelling. Complex subject manner like declining cognitive function and hallucinations is tough to cover in 30 or 60 seconds.
While many marketing agencies tell you that you need to present a problem and deliver a solution in under 30 seconds, a short-form video isn't sufficient for complex topics.
Even though the TED-Ed explainer runs over 5 minutes, the animators use the first 15 seconds to capture the audience's attention.
18. Comcast Business
Comcast Business provides evidence that the best animated explainer videos don't have to be complex. Of course, intricate 3D modeling does offer value to many companies. But as you can see above, Comcast's video manages to be entertaining, lay out a problem, and provide a solution without advanced motion graphics.
The animator's goal is to present the argument that the internet will become more crowded. Through simple visuals of a character struggling to navigate a busy highway, viewers are left understanding the problem and now know that Comcast is proactively preparing for the future.
19. Amazon Smart Home
The animated explainer above from Amazon was picked because of how well the animators presented use cases for the product.
Amazon Smart Home is a highly intuitive platform with various applications that can improve consumers' lives. However, Amazon's challenge is communicating the features and how they can be applied in everyday life.
The explainer does an excellent job of not only presenting the applications but showing viewers how they can be implemented through a relatable character in a familiar setting.
20. Mail Chimp
If you haven't noticed by now, we are huge fans of collage-style animation. Mail Chimp's product explainer video is one of the best examples we've seen to date of the design-industry trend.
The animators use a highly engaging, textured layering method to replicate popular devices and the Mail Chimp dashboard. Taking a modern design method, elevating it, and pushing it forward while nailing the value proposition is no easy feat.
Mailchimp's animators prove that there's always room for innovation. Don't be afraid to pull from other people's work, but push the medium forward if you truly want to make the best explainer video possible.
21. LINE Things
Many explainer videos spend too much time outlining the problem and neglect the solution. LINE Things provides us with a well-structured video that thoroughly explains how their product solves the problem of managing connected devices.
At the 20-second mark, the animators have already identified the problem and stated that LINE Things has an answer. The additional 75 seconds are dedicated to how the interactive solution helps users manage their connected devices through engagement.
While motion graphics is the main focus of our best explainer videos list, background audio is an essential element required to captivate viewers.
Pipedrive provides an excellent example of engaging audio that perfectly fits the brand and product. The video features calm background music with much louder interjections of futuristic noises to help boost consumer confidence.
One of the most visually stunning examples on our top explainers list is from Skirmish, a freelance hiring platform for the gaming industry.
The designers present cutting-edge animation that caters to its target audience. Visually stimulating explainers aren't necessary for every company or organization, but we highly recommend considering implementing striking visuals if it fits your brand.
SpeakOn is hands down the funniest explainer on our list. The animators use animals to demonstrate the edit feature in SpeakOn's messaging service.
Humor is one of the best ways to grab your audience's attention. Notice how SpeakOn puts animals rather than humans in situations that would be regarded as ethically questionable.
Our last animated explainer comes from Google's line of smart home products, Nest. The animators bring the brand's hardware to the forefront of the videos by meshing animation with authentic product images.
Nest's explainer is a successful example of how to draw attention to the most critical aspects of your video. By using real images rather than motion graphics, we get to see how the smart home features work as well as their elegant designs.
There you have it! The 25 best animated explainer videos we could find on the internet. We hope you've enjoyed watching the examples and reading our commentary. Now it's time to take what you've learned from the pros and implement it in your next campaign.
If you are still having trouble getting inspired, reach out to one of the professional animators at Yans Media for a free consultation.
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