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How to Make Your Own Explainer Video on a Budget

This is a guest post courtesy of Matt Zajechowski of Digital Third Coast Internet Marketing. It’s a great read and a terrific resource.


How to Make Your Own Explainer Video on a Budget

People love watching videos- that’s not a secret. 92% of mobile viewers share videos with others, and 96% of consumers find video helpful when making purchasing decisions online.

Making videos, on the other hand, is not quite as popular. Maybe you don’t have the right equipment, or you think it’ll cost you a ton of money, or you just don’t know where to begin. Whatever the reason, it’s easy to put video at the bottom of your content to-do list, when the reality is you could be missing out on a significant number of conversions by ignoring video.

No more excuses. Digital Third Coast has written an e-book to show you that you have everything you need to create your own explainer video for your company’s product or service. An explainer video is ideal for your first forays into video production because it shows how to solve your potential client’s problem, which helps reel them in and increase conversions. Video is pretty simple to produce internally, which saves you the money and headaches of dealing with a production company. Plus, once you have the basics down, you’re already well on your way to being able to make videos any time you want and adding another dimension to your company’s digital marketing strategy.

But before you grab your camera, you have to write your video’s script. Keep your script focused by asking yourself while you’re writing, what is the most important way that your company solves a problem? Writing with the perspective of putting your customer first will keep your viewers engaged throughout the video.

Once your script is written and edited, you can start scoping out your equipment. We suggest a DSLR camera for its larger sensors and versatility. Your chosen lens depends on what kind of video you’ll be shooting- a ‘prime’ lens is ideal for interviews because it shoots from a fixed point, while a zoom lens lets you play with zooming in and out (but it’s more expensive). No matter what you choose, make sure that your lens is compatible with your camera.

You’ll also need audio equipment: a lavalier mic for interviews and a shotgun mic for natural sound. Finally, a couple of accessories are in order: a tripod, memory cards, and lighting. You can rent your equipment, but if you plan on making more videos in the future, we suggest buying the equipment for the best value.

Now, you’re ready to actually shoot your video! It’s easiest to shoot things well during shooting, rather than plan on fixing it during editing, which is actually pretty difficult. Make sure your audio is high quality and any extra noise is minimized, and get plenty of A-Roll (primary footage like interviews) and B-Roll (extra footage like shots of products and processes). You can decide whether shooting in manual or automatic mode is your best bet, and the e-book also covers some of the more technical aspects of shooting, like the exposure triangle, aperture, depth of field, and more.

Once you’ve yelled “Cut!” for the final time, you’ll move on to the editing process. You can add in music and images using royalty-free or Creative Commons assets. For the actual editing, we suggest Adobe’s Creative Suite. After editing, you’re ready to export and upload your video to a video hosting site, and then you’re done!

That doesn’t sound so bad, right? The e-book includes even more information than what’s described above, plus other resources that you’ll find helpful as you embark on making your own explainer video. Click here to download Digital Third Coast’s e-book Make Your Own Explainer Video: It’s Cheaper (and Easier) Than You Think.And be sure to thank us in your first acceptance speech.