August 9th, 2017

Explainer Videos or TV Commercials: Which is Right for You?

videos, social media marketing, catalyst for social mdia

One day, during a casual chat in our office with a client, he said, “I know that there is a huge potential in video marketing but how can you guys tell whether someone needs an explainer video or a TV advertisement……aren’t they same?”

This was not the first time that someone asked us this question, but this time we decided to write something to clear out this confusion. So, we went on to ask our client, “What do you do when you are watching your favorite TV show….and then comes a commercial break….and advertisements start playing, one after the other?”

He thought for a moment and said, “Sometimes, I actually wait for the break!…to quickly get some snacks or relieve myself…other times…maybe I switch channels…and I see ads-ads everywhere…I put the TV on mute”.

We went on asking, “What do you do after that?”. The answer was, “I get lost in my thoughts or browse something on my phone till the show comes back.”

So, here’s the first thing! Most of the people don’t watch commercials by choice! They do not even want to pay attention to them. They may like/dislike a commercial, that’s a different story but they do not look forward to watch TV Ads.

Now we would turn towards you with a question: If you want to know about something, like how something works? How does it look? What is this product for? etc. then where do you go looking for more information? Most probably our answer would be “Internet”. You may search things on google, check out some websites, forums or videos to know about things. That’s where you may come across explainer videos. You may/may not want to click on the video.

In contrast to the TV commercials, explainer videos are opened by the viewers because they want to watch them. If the video is relevant and good enough to watch, it would get undivided attention of the viewer, unlike most TV Commercials.

Remember how our client told that he browses something on his phone while waiting for the TV show to return? Every now and then, most people are checking/browsing some or the other thing on their smartphones. They prefer to read articles, visit websites or see what others have shared. The young generation prefers internet over TV because they can choose what to watch and it’s available 24/7.

Explainer videos are meant for explaining concepts, product benefits, services offered, product usage etc. They are always available on the internet for ready-reference and you mostly watch them just once.

TV Commercials are meant for informing you about something like a discount, new packaging, better results etc. Although they too are available on the internet these days, usually nobody goes ahead to explore the new commercials (but our team loves doing that!). Instead, they appear again and again to hammer the information in our minds. These days, video ads can be also found on the internet but they are still lesser than TV Commercials and most of the time, you have an option to skip/ignore them.

TV Ads are placed and timed keeping the target audience in mind. Various factors are considered like, the shows they may watch, the time they watch TV, the channels they prefer etc. Still, there is no surety that your ad will be watched by the target audience. On the other hand, if someone watches your explainer video on your website, there are more chances of him being interested in doing business with you. In case, you do not have any specific target audience or anything special to explain, you can go for TV Ads. For instance, it is more likely to have a TV Ad for 3 new flavors of an ice-cream brand, unless you want to explain the process of making them.

Tv Ads are generally shorter in duration but occur frequently while explainers may be 3 to 4 mins long. One of the reasons for this is that broadcasting the TV Ads is far more expensive that uploading explainers. If you are low on budget, you may like to go for explainers. That is one of the major reasons why startups prefer explainers, to reach out to their prospective customers.

Since explainers are aimed at making people understand something, you would find more of captions, steps, labelling etc. in those videos. Clever marketers never fail to add a link, contact information or call to action in the explainers. Explainers can receive queries, requests and feedbacks in the comment section of the website, social media page etc. Many organisations respond to this communication on a regular basis. This way they connect on a personal level with the viewers. Explainer videos can be designed to be interactive themselves! This means viewers can choose between a few options, click on what you like and direct the video accordingly.

Explainers are a relatively new trend, but are increasingly being adopted for making complex things simple! These days, the internet is being preferred over TV by many and it is quite evident from the rising popularity of Amazon prime, Netflix and Youtube. These people prefer to watch things at their own convenience. So, take an informed decision based on factors like, what kind of people do you want to target, what kind of message do you want to convey, what’s your budget, do you want them to watch it once or repeatedly and do you want them to watch it by choice or forcefully? Depending upon the requirements, various businesses make explainers or TV Commercials an integral part of their marketing strategy. Some companies use both because they need to achieve marketing goals of both kinds.

If you want to produce impactful videos, contact now!


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