Explainer Videos Explained: A Case Study on Plates

Rich "Ace" Akullian

Posted by
Rich "Ace" Akullian on

Jul 17, 2020

Great explainer videos are made to answer many questions about companies, products, and services. The varying types of explainer videos are designed to give viewers typically a fast-paced engaging story to follow and leave them with an understanding of what you offer, followed by a strong call to action.

Explainer videos are great for:

  • Increasing web conversions
  • Improving SEO search rankings
  • Keeping viewers on your page for up to 2x Longer
  • Many additional marketing situations (investor pitches, email signatures, tradeshows, etc.) 

At Akullian, we love utilizing our full creative team to bring these explainer videos to life from “scratch.” We recently completed a set of animated explainer videos for the Plates iOS apps. Plates is a food sharing platform for clean, real food that is cooked, baked, and grown by your local community.  

Each of these videos went through the same creative process:

  1. Goal

What is the goal of the content? For this set of videos we wanted to have a warm and welcoming message that called on food creators and diners to join a new platform. The community-based app is focused on connecting local food economies and nourishing the world. Our ultimate goal was to explain the Plates platforms at a high level so that it could be shared with anyone considering using it. The company’s planned destinations included their website, social channels, and investor pitches. Currently, they have international expansion plans and so we made sure that these videos could potentially be translated in the future.

Overall, we wanted to leave viewers with a feel that we were innovating à-la companies such as Airbnb, while showing the style and craft of the passionate artists & people we hope to attract to the platform.   

  1. Script
script wiring for marketing video in upstate New York

Once the goal is defined, next comes scripting. This is where we pound lead to paper, typically followed by countless revisions & wordsmithing. We’ll then refigure our script to get as clever as we can and eliminate any words or syllables that don’t add to the story. With attention spans at an all time low, it is incredibly important to cut the script down until you can’t take away anything else. Once we get an approved script we’ll record a demo voiceover and will then move into the storyboard process. The script should stay consistent with the overall brand voice and should align with the style of the planned final video production (live action, animated, whiteboard, etc.).

For the Plates videos, we wanted to build video versions of their platform’s SOPs, giving us a good starting point. We typically spend most of the time on our scripts ensuring that we will connect with the target audience. For Plates, the audiences are healthy-minded people looking to shop, eat, and live well. 

  1. Storyboard

The storyboarding process is crucial and will determine where the video will end up visually and what will be required for production. This is the step where words will be brought to life to ensure the viewer can comprehend the full story. This is also the step that if done correctly, will save countless hours in production and editing. For the Plates videos, we developed a set of custom illustrated icons, followed by their brand guide that we recently completed. We then expanded the illustrative style of those icons throughout the two videos, while also including screenshots from the products to help demonstrate the apps. 

  1. Production

Once the storyboard is finalized, it’s time to begin the production process. Depending on the style of video you end up making, there will be great differences in production. Live action explainer videos can range from a single subject on a white backdrop all the way up to fast moving cinematic shots with explosions. For illustrated videos they may require endless keyframes to make pixels move where you need them to go. With today’s varying digital platforms, many companies are also working to build explainer videos in different sizes to accommodate portrait, widescreen, and square formats.

Each explainer video typically requires consideration of:

-Voiceovers / Talent


-Sound Effects

For the Plates videos, we utilized in-house voiceover talent, royalty free music from our favorite sites, Pond5 & Premiumbeat, along with an abundance of sound effects to make sure viewers were entertained and educated with each word and note.

To support these videos we also have been developing PPC assets and ads for the major digital platforms. If you need a great explainer video or creative content for your business, reach out to our creative team today. We look forward to telling your story! 

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