Everything you need to know about Animated Explainer Video

Everything you need to know about Animated Explainer Video
Table of Contents

Animated explainer videos are the most effective ways to explain complex ideas. Last but not least, they are affordable and good for ROI.

This YouTube analysis of 30 top SaaS companies by Content Beta reveals that the most viewed videos composition on YouTube are Product Demo/Product Explainer videos:

YouTube Analysis on Explainer Videos

Remember the time, in the not-too-distant past, when most companies supplied a thickish manual containing diagrams and other technical jargon explaining how their product worked?

Since there was no better alternative, companies hoped that users would flip through hundreds of pages to find the information they needed. The manuals used small-size fonts and crammed in as much information as they could. Even back then, not many people bothered to open one, much less read one.

The easier option was to just call customer service if something went wrong. They did so in droves, forcing businesses to hire an army of customer service representatives to manage a flood of customer support tickets.

However, they did not take into account a loss of business due to bad customer service.

Consider this: According to commbox data, every year, $1.6 trillion is lost due to poor customer service.

Instead, there is a better option. Your B2B SaaS business can use videos in general and explainer videos in particular to improve your customer service.

Let’s begin by talking about videos.

Explainer Video Statistics
Some more statistics from the YouTube analysis

Why is video a great choice for B2B SaaS businesses?

Videos are a great option for B2B SaaS businesses because they can be used to quickly and effectively communicate complex information in a way that is engaging and visually appealing.

In addition, video is a highly shareable format, which means that your explainer video has the potential to reach a wide audience and generate leads for your business.

How did explainer videos originate?

What made SaaS, along with other industries, use explainer videos to market their products and services more effectively?

Apart from the weakening hold of traditional advertising methods like TV and newspaper ads on consumers, the major factor that precipitated the matters was reduced human attention spans.

A Microsoft study reports that human attention spans have shrunk to eight seconds - a 25% drop in just a few years.

To make an impact, one has to be quick and brief

Whiteboard explainer videos, for example, were first produced, circa 2007.

Watch the explainer video created for UPS, the American package delivery company. It explains the benefits of using their services:

What is an explainer video?

An explainer video is a short video that tells the story of your brand or product. It explains what you do, why you do it, and how you do it. A good explainer video will capture the attention of your audience and explain your story in a way that is easy to understand.

Types of Explainer Videos

Explainer videos are of many different types, each with its own strengths and benefits.

Popular explainer video examples include 2D and 3D animation videos, motion graphics explainer videos, whiteboard animations, live-action explainer videos, 30 second explainer videos and so on.

What are animated explainer videos?

Animated explainer videos are a powerful marketing tool that can help businesses promote their products or services. These videos use animation and graphics to explain complex concepts in a simple and easy-to-understand way. They can be customized to fit any business’s needs

They can be used to:

  • Introduce a new product or service, explain how to use it, or highlight its key features. Promote a company’s brand or values.
  • Communicate with customers, onboard them, and troubleshoot their problems.

What are the different types of animated explainer videos?

There are different types of animated explainer videos, each with its advantages:

1. 2D Animation

2D animation is the most popular type of animated explainer video. It is relatively easy and affordable to produce and can be used to create a wide range of styles.

Watch this SaaS explainer video example from Slack:

2. Whiteboard animation

Whiteboard animation is a simple and effective way to communicate complex ideas in a visually appealing way. Watch this SaaS explainer video example from Spotify:

3. Motion graphics

Motion graphics can be used to create highly creative and eye-catching videos that grab attention. Watch this SaaS explainer video from Digital Ocean:

4. Live-action video

Live-action video combined with animation can be an effective way to tell your story engagingly and uniquely. Watch this explainer video from Mint.com:

Why does your business need an animated explainer video?

Animated explainer videos are a great way to engage potential customers and communicate what your business does in a concise, visually appealing way.

In today’s competitive online marketplace, businesses need to find innovative ways to stand out from the crowd and attract attention. An animated explainer video can help you do just that.

While the text is still an important part of any website or sales pitch, studies have shown that people are more likely to remember information that is presented to them in a video format.

  • An animated explainer video brings your business’s story to life and makes it more relatable and memorable for potential customers.
  • Not only are they more engaging, but animated explainer videos are also extremely versatile. They can be used on your website, social media channels, and even at trade shows or other events.

List of Best Explainer Videos

1. Dollar Shave

Industry: Personal grooming

Video length: 1:34 

Video type: Explainer video

Be warned that this explainer video contains expletives (beeps). Nonetheless, no top video list  is complete without this video, which has since attained iconic status like the first Dropbox video.

Here is this regular guy looking straight into the camera and telling about the pain points every shaver faces. He busts many myths about how product ‘features' can mislead consumers into buying things they don’t really need.

The guy doesn’t stop at ranting about it; he actually provides solutions that have transformed the shaving products industry.

2. Grammarly

Industry: AI + Education

Video length: 1:49 

Video type: Live-action + explainer video

There is something about the Grammarly’s sexplainer videos that connect with the viewers and play a major factor in convincing people to sign up for a trial or upgrade to a higher plan.

This explainer video features a campus coach who goes around helping students who are busy completing their assignments. 

The students mention a problem and the coach suggests the answers while the on screen graphics shows how Grammarly helps the students to correct a sentence, suggest better usage, and so on.

3. Uber Eats

Industry: Food aggregators

Video length: 1.07

Video type: Live-action

Delivering food is considered a thankless job, requiring long hours and dealing with a diverse set of people.

Well, this explainer video features an uber-cool delivery boy to change the perception about food delivery business in this as he interacts with a cross section of the society, working in different circumstances, and manages to bring cheer to them with his cheery attitude and outlook to life. 

The video manages to establish the brand as a friend that always delivers when people need it the most

4. Amazon Go

Industry: Retail

Video length: 1.50

Video type: Live-action + Animation

Amazon Go stores use ‘Just Walk Out Technology’ to provide a checkout-free shopping experience. All that shoppers need to do is use their mobile app to enter the store, pick up what they want and even put back some they don’t want and just walk out. 

No waiting, no queues at the checkout counters. Most people would find such an experience disconcerting because almost everyone is used to shopping in the conventional way. 

This explainer video does a great job of introducing a novel concept to shoppers.

5. PayPal

Industry: FinTech

Video length: 1.00

Video type: Live-action + Animation

This explainer video is a part of PayPal's 'People Rule' campaign. It highlights how PayPal eliminates people’s daily worries.

It does so in an unusual way by featuring a man singing and strumming a guitar. As he belts out the features and benefits, the ‘worries’ are depicted using basic animation which are destroyed using wrecking balls and explosions. 

There haven't been many explainer videos using this concept, which makes it interesting to watch.

List of Best Animated Explainer Videos

1. SimplyBrand

Industry: Blockchain

Video length: 1:34

Video type: Motion Graphic + 3D Animation

To explain about  technology, explainer videos need to be spot on with their narrative because it should make the viewers understand the product and make them click on your call to action link. 

With a combination of smooth graphics and a great voiceover, the explainer video manages to drive home the core message--how the SimplyBrand platform helps customers get rid of online counterfeits using a combination of crowdsourcing, blockchain and AI technology.


Industry: Insurance + Compliance

Video length: 1:01 

Video type: Animated explainer video

Dealing with insurance and 3rd-party compliance is sure to make a lot of people groan. The reason for this is that insurance can get very complicated very quickly, leaving people in a tangle unsure of what to do next.

This animated explainer video created by Explainer Video Hero does a great job of demystifying the process using graphics, transitions, and eloquent commentary that sums up the problems as well as spelling out how the help is at hand with MYCOI. Explainer Video Hero provides the best and affordable explainer videos.

3. Center Inc

Industry: Cyber Security

Video length: 1:38 

Video type: Motion Graphic + Screencast

Motion graphics can be a powerful explainer video type when used by people who know how to use them effectively.  Add smooth transitions to the mix and what you get is a great example of an explainer video that viewers will truly enjoy watching.

The video is about the problems companies face to comply with new privacy regulations and provide greater control to customers over their personal data scattered all around. Having introduced the main theme, the voiceover goes on to explain the various scenarios and how to deal with them effectively. A good example of how to use voiceover and graphics effectively.

4. ChatClass

Industry: Education

Video length: 1:10 

Video type: Cartoon

How does one create a video for the consumption of young children and their parents? It can be a huge challenge to decide what type of approach to adopt and what explainer video to use. However, as it is not meant for a corporate audience means you have a little more room to work with.

The explainer video uses cartoons to describe how ChatClass offers the best solution for learning spoken English. The use of background sound effects to mimic a classroom with many young voices chattering away is effective and adds to the overall effect.

5. Wizefi

Industry: Fintech

Video length: 1:43 

Video type: Motion Graphics + Screencast

This video features the Fosters family, who want to lead a normal life doing regular things expected of a family. Their main concern is financial security because they made some bad decisions in the past.

This explainer video grabs your attention with an intro most families can identify with. The video then goes on to describe how anybody can plan for a secure financial future using their app and 4-step wealth building future.

The video works well because it not only addresses an identifiable problem that every family faces but also offers a simple solution.

Who should create your animated explainer video?

A great animated explainer video can be a powerful marketing tool for businesses. But who should create your video?

There are a few things to consider when deciding who should create your animated explainer video:

  • First, you need to decide what kind of animation style you want. A wide variety of animation styles exist, from 2D hand-drawn animation to 3D computer animation. Once you know what style you want, you can start looking for animators who specialize in that style.
  • Another thing to consider is the length of the video. A shorter video may be less expensive to produce, but it may not be as effective at getting your message across as a longer video. Choose an animator who can produce the length of video that you need.
  • Finally, consider your budget.

Here is an in-depth analysis of video styles preferred by over 100+ top SaaS companies created by Content Beta:

Analysis on video styles preferred by over 100+ top SaaS companies

Advantages of animated explainer videos

Perhaps the most obvious advantage is that it can save you a significant amount of money. You won’t have to pay for expensive equipment or rent studio space.

  • Another big advantage is that you’ll have access to a larger pool of talent. When you use a remote video production service, you can choose from a global pool of animators, voice actors, and other professionals. This means you’re more likely to find the perfect person for your project.
  • Finally, using a remote video production service can help you save time. You won’t have to worry about coordinating schedules or dealing with logistics. The team at the explainer video company will take care of everything for you.

Disadvantages of animated explainer videos

Let us look at the three main limitations:

  • There may be less control over the final product. For example, if you want a very specific animation style or have a clear vision for your video, it may be difficult to communicate this to someone who is not in the same room as you.
  • Additionally, working with someone remotely can be more expensive than working with a local video production company.
  • Finally, there is always the possibility that something could go wrong during the production process and you would be at the mercy of the person you're working with to fix it.

Here is an example of a SaaS explainer video created by Content Beta for Arrowstream, the platform that provides actionable intelligence for the food service industry:

What are the benefits of animated explainer videos?

Animated explainer videos are an extremely versatile tools that can be used to achieve a variety of marketing goals:

  • They help businesses communicate their message clearly and concisely. Studies have shown that people are more likely to remember information that is presented to them in a visual format, making animated explainer videos an ideal way to communicate complex concepts and ideas.
  • In addition to being an effective communication tool, animated explainer videos can also be used to boost website traffic and engagement. By including a call-to-action at the end of the video, businesses can encourage viewers to visit their website or take a specific action, such as signing up for a newsletter or making a purchase.

Wrapping up the article

In conclusion, animated explainer videos help B2B SaaS companies to brand the business, educate clients, generate leads, and increase sales.

Animated explainer videos are the most effective ways to explain complex ideas. Last but not least, they are affordable and good for ROI.


1. How long should animated explainer videos be?

For most explainer videos, shorter is better. The average length of an animated explainer video is 2-3 minutes, but videos that are 1 minute or less are often the most effective. This is because audiences have shorter attention spans and are more likely to engage with a video that is short and to the point.‍

2. What are the different types of explainer videos?

Some of the commonly produced explainer video types are 2D animated explainer videos, 3D animated explainer videos, live-action explainer videos, motion graphic explainers, instructional UI explainer videos, etc. Most B2B Saas companies prefer animation explainer videos. They try hiring remote video production services, especially from animated explainer video production agencies like Explainer Video Hero and Content Beta. These agencies provide explainer video production services for B2B SaaS brands that do not know how to make these videos in-house.

3. What factors should you keep in mind with animated explainer videos?

The best animated explainer videos are those that consider the complexity of your product or service, your target audience, and your budget. For example, with a corporate audience, you'll want to keep your video short and to the point. However, if you're targeting a consumer audience, you can afford to be a bit more creative and produce a longer video.

4. How much do the animated explainer videos cost?

The average explainer video pricing varies from USD 3K to 5K, depending on your requirement, the animated explainer video company you are working with, and the type of animated explainer video. However, make sure that you check out their portfolio and client testimonials before you engage their services.