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How to Write an Explainer Video
September 21, 2022
Explainer videos are one of our specialties here at Digital Brew. But we don’t just animate them out of nothing. You have to write a script first! Today, we’re going to take a look at what goes into our process for writing an explainer video script.
Before we can start writing an explainer video, we need to know what we’re explaining! So we’ll sit down with our client for a creative brief to learn more about their company. We’re experts in video, but we’re certainly not experts in chicken feed, computer chips, or online gambling (okay, some of us might know a little about that one). We take this time to learn everything we can about a client’s business and nail down exactly what they want to get across in their video. Sometimes it’s a more general video that focuses on what a company does. Other times, it could focus on the rollout of a new product or service. Heck, sometimes it might be a video for their own internal use.
Writing an Explainer Video Script
So now that we’ve had our creative brief, one of our writers will go through their pages of notes (sometimes many pages) and whittle all that information down into a short script. Whatever the length and whatever the use is, at the core we’re still telling a story for our client. It could be something broad like their own story and what their brand represents, but it could also be about a problem out in the world and here are the ways their product solves those problems.
A lot of this blog post is , “sometimes it’s this way and sometimes it’s that way,” which is true! Because we treat every client’s script uniquely to make sure we capture their brand’s distinct voice and tone. That means sometimes a script might be more character-driven and a little silly and sometimes it’ll be more text or graphic heavy and get really in the weeds on details. It all depends on what audience the video is aimed at.
Writing is Rewriting
Ever heard the phrase, “writing is rewriting?” Well now you have. We don’t just spit out a draft and call it quits. When we’re writing an explainer script, most of the time the first draft is way too long and a little clunky. So now it’s time to go in and finesse it. If a client asks for a 60sec video, it doesn’t do us a whole lot of good to turn in a script that’s 90sec. So we find the best ways to say more with less and trim out repetitive words or sections. A minute goes by pretty fast so it’s imperative that each word on the page is efficient and precise.
Once we’ve massaged out all the knots and it’s something we feel lives up to our reputation, we send it over to the client for their feedback. This is where a lot of collaboration comes in. We know that an hour meeting going over a business can’t compare to people in that business (remember, we said we’re not experts in everything) so there’s a good chance tweaks will have to be made. Maybe there’s a specific point they want to hit a little harder? Or maybe marketing plans have changed and they want to shift focus from one audience to another? There’s a million reasons for script changes and our goal is to make sure it represents our client in the best way possible.
We hope that gives you a little more insight into a less flashy but imperative part of the video process. We may not always nail a script 100% on the first try but that’s where the collaboration plays a big part in making each script the best it can be. Whenever you’re ready to take the leap and have us write your script (and make your video) you can always reach us here.
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