Ah, your explainer video storyboard. The mighty piece that makes all animation possible, the work that makes the script shine and dictates every aspect of the final video.
A good storyboard is a work of art and arguably the make or break of a good video: no good script can survive a bad storyboard, and no good video can be made without a good explainer video storyboard to guide it either.
But when everything comes together right, it is real explainer video magic happening right before your eyes.
The Beginnings Of An Explainer Video Storyboard
Before getting to the dream storyboard you want, you need to understand what has happened right before it to make it possible. The step that comes immediately before the creation of the storyboard is the writing of the script.
This single document contains all the instructions that need to be absorbed and highlighted by the storyboard, and its importance is paramount.
A good script is the driving force that defines why people should buy your product, how they are in the same situation as the one the video should show and why exactly they absolutely need the product or service your company will advertise through the explainer video in their life right now.
A script is responsible for putting down on paper what will be your slogan, your logo, your explainer video characters and the story itself as well. Since it is just paper and text, the script allows you to go wild and express in whatever way possible what is unique about your product and so on. Do not hold back and information that is relevant to the viewer.
A Hero Is Born
Once the script is finally done, the explainer video storyboard comes into play. While a storyboard can be defined by the dictionary as “a sequence of drawings, typically with some directions and dialogue, representing the shots planned for a movie or television production”, its actual meaning in the production process is much more beautiful and colourful. Our storyboards are created digitally in Adobe Illustrator.
To put it simply, the explainer video storyboard is what draws the line between a video idea and concept and an actual video. All the way up to here, everything related to the video only existed in the shape of words – notes, emails, outlines, the script and all other sorts of documents that contain all the information needed about it – but there was nothing that brought the visual part of it to life yet.
And without visuals, a video is nothing more than an .mp3 file floating meaninglessly in the air. No, thanks!
From now on, the video starts to actually exist in its earliest form. The storyboard can be called the skeleton of the explainer video, over which all other elements will be placed. Here is what one looks like:
Because of its role as the foundation of the video, it is essential for a storyboard to be precise and clearly display the main elements of the video such as the product, the character, the logos and everything else you want to show your viewers.
In a nutshell, explainer video storyboards work like a mix of construction blueprints and the foundations of the building themselves. A storyboard maps the flow of the video so that you and the production team can come up with a solid flow and animate the video properly.
A major pro of the explainer video storyboards we like to create at Spider Videos is that we make them keeping animations in mind in a way many others don’t. Once we have the initial storyboard down, with the final version of the characters including all the additions and changes you needed, we bring the storyboard alive.
Here, to save time and make sure the final video is exactly what you wanted it to be, our animators create the final version straight from the images on the storyboard using Adobe Illustrator – no wasting time trying to recreate it or having to redo everything because the main character’s face looks more like a football than what it looked like in the storyboard.
The storyboard comes to life, and we really do mean it when we say it.
The Explainer Video Storyboard Essentials
A key to a good storyboard and video is to keep it rather simple wherever possible. That way it is much easier to visualize all the technical details of it, the content it should display, the background, the time of the day in the scenes and so on.
For a good explainer video, you should pack it with information your viewer needs and nothing else, and to achieve this the video must be thought out this way straight from its infancy.
Everything that will be in the final version should be there for a reason, and the storyboard must reflect that. It doesn’t matter if it is there to support the explainer’s logic, for comic relief purposes or to make the setting more believable and realistic – if it is in the video, it must be essential to it. You can even sketch yours like this:
Be kind to your audience, and think of them during the creative process: if the idea for an explainer video is very complex and too complicated, the viewers will find it hard to focus and you might lose their attention because they will feel overwhelmed.
The storyboard will show you before the video is even animated if there are too many elements there, and which can go as well. Use it wisely to make sure your video is sheer perfection when it’s done. Themes and symbols are good to string the video together, but they must make sense and should never distract the viewer from the main message.
Last but not least, when you create your explainer video storyboard and animate it, always think long term: if you don’t know for how long will this explainer video be in use, make sure it doesn’t look outdated so that viewers can love it for many months or years to come.