App Explainer

App Explainer

How can you make your mobile or web app stand out amidst the insanely crowded world of online app marketplaces? The odds are increasingly staggering. As of early 2017, consumers could choose from approximately 2.8M apps in Google Play, 2.2M apps in the App Store, and more than 1.5M apps in other marketplaces (e.g., Microsoft Store, Amazon Appstore, BlackBerry World).
One proven strategy for inciting interest and increasing conversions: VIDEO. Specifically, creating an effective explainer video for your mobile app’s marketplace product page will pay huge dividends. Video widens your exposure, creating another avenue for engaging prospective users. Without asking users for a significant time commitment, it helps them clearly understand what your product is, how it works, and how it will benefit them. It vastly increases the chance that they’ll download your app. Why?
People prefer watching videos to learn about products. Increasingly, consumers turn to video content for product research. Four times as many customers would rather watch a video about a product than read about it.
Video is an increasingly dominant force in the online marketplace. According to Cisco, by 2019, more than 70% of mobile traffic will be online video content.
People are more likely to buy after watching a video. Countless surveys have shown that watching a product video increases the likelihood that viewers will buy the product: it’s estimated they’re anywhere from 64% to 85% more likely to buy after watching a video. In addition, online app marketplaces that include explainer videos on product pages report overwhelmingly higher sales than those without videos.
If you have a landing page for your mobile app, you can also feature the video there. Video content has a massive impact on increasing your website’s ranking in Google’s search results.
Do’s of Explainer Videos:
Keep it short.

The optimal length for an explainer video is under a minute. The most frequently shared explainer videos are under 15 seconds.

Pay close attention to the App Store (iOS) or Google Play (Android) guidelines.

Both platforms have specific guidelines videos must follow, though the App Store’s guidelines are much more stringent than Google Play’s. Either way, if you don’t follow their guidelines, you risk your video being rejected. Rejection can be an expensive, time-consuming mistake. (Read on for more specifics about these guidelines.)

Frame everything in terms of the benefits to the user.

Don’t just show your mobile app’s features. Instead, show how those features will benefit the users. Says Lange, “Think about the benefits that a user will get from your app, and present the information in that way. Make all the features you show them directly applicable to their lives.”

Create flow.

Make sure your visuals flow smoothly from one animation or visual to the next. Don’t present obstacles they may trip over. Recommends Lange, “Think of it as a journey the viewer is taking with you. You need to keep them moving through the landscape of your video in order to maintain their interest.”

Don’ts of Explainer Videos:
Waste their time.

Says Lange, “An effective video will not waste any time. From the moment it begins, it should start broad, demoing how the app works, and as the seconds pass, go into greater detail on the specific features users might be interested in. It should do that in a highly engaging way.” Given recent technology upgrades, this has become even more important: in iOS 11 or later, App Store videos will auto play on your mobile app’s product page. If you don’t get to the point quickly, you risk losing their attention and losing a potential user.

Linger too long on anything.

Explains Lange, “People get bored when a graphic or a screen stays the same too long. The video loses energy and momentum.”

Write or direct it yourself.
“Unless the client is someone with a lot of experience making videos, making a video is best left in the hands of someone who writes videos for a living,” says Lange. In addition, he says, “You should have a director even for something as simple as an app video — a director who makes videos for a living. Even though it’s highly tactical and utilitarian, in order to keep it engaging, it should be shaped into a narrative by someone who has experience doing that.” Thus, the optimal situation is to provide your video producer with a deep understanding of your app, as well as the user for which the app is being built. Then, it’s the video producer’s job to develop the creative solution that showcases your app and speaks to what’s important to your users. And — to be frank — it’s likely a more efficient way to get from the starting line to a finished product that will deliver the results you seek.
HoneyBump Videos focuses on strategy before developing the creative content.
An effective explainer video is built upon a strong foundation of strategic thinking: about who your users are, what matters to them, and how your product can be differentiated in their eyes. Accordingly, you should be wary of anyone who’s ready to start working on your video before investing in a discovery phase focused on achieving a deep understanding of your mobile or web app, your users, and your app’s value prop. As a rule, on any explainer video project, HoneyBump Videos invests significant time focused on strategy and discovery before embarking on the creative work.

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