How much does a B2B SaaS explainer video cost?

Even $5,000 is a pretty penny, and dropping that kind of cash on a video isn’t for everybody. So how much should you be really paying for your explainer video?
Are you wondering whether it’s worth investing more in video marketing? Does your brand really need a video right now? How much is it worth spending on this video? In this article, we’ll answer every one of these questions and help you make the best decision.
Did you know that 96% of consumers find a video useful when buying online? Be it to explain features, showcase a concept or product or even just tell a story. Videos have just proven to be priceless must-haves today. In fact, here are some growth hacks for your killer marketing video.

So what makes up a great explainer video?

The best types of explainer videos are the ones where a complicated subject is condensed and delivered clearly and succinctly. They work brilliantly on company websites, and they excel on social media where viewers attention is at a premium.

Does the budget define how well the video performs?

Well, as per a survey conducted across 70 different agencies, some video production companies charge as little as $500 for a 60-second explainer video, whilst others can charge as much as $72,000. While you could get your explainer video for just $500, more than half of the explainer video companies charge between $2,500-$10,000 for a video.

This is just bizarre! The range is way too big. And that’s why, here’s a table that can simplify things for you:
We realize that even $5,000 is a pretty penny, and dropping that kind of cash on a video isn’t for everybody and we also see agencies at both ends of this spectrum performing really well in the industry which boils down our question to how is this possible?

If you’ve already done some read-up, you would’ve already found out that there are different types of videos that are priced differently. To answer this, we would probably have to take a closer look at the breakdown of an explainer video and where is your money being spent.

The main elements of an Explainer Video are:

Video Length and Turnaround Time

The turnaround time for an explainer video can be anywhere between 1 week to 12 weeks based on the agency’s bandwidth, the complexity of the video, and your deadlines. A longer video takes more time (and hence money) to create. Some agencies do offer a “quick turnaround fee” if you are in a rush to receive your video and would prefer to pay for a faster turnaround.
Given that short, snappy videos tend to work better, you should think carefully about whether you really want a longer video. Often, the first 60 seconds are the most expensive. After that, many production costs scale so the studio will give you a break on the per-second price.

Keeping your video as short as possible isn’t just good for your budget. Video length research indicates that shorter videos tend to perform better on most platforms.

Script

The script for your video might be the defining aspect of your explainer. How simple and engaging it is, how well it can tell your story, how well it explains each feature of your service, all of this can depend on just a script.
A reputable house will always have in-house scriptwriting that spends time understanding your service and the small elements of it that would be very important and ideate innovative ways to showcase it in your video.

It’s just that experience with video is important – this way the video performs better. Agencies often write scripts that are creative, funny, interesting and well, the proof is in the pudding.

When you look at brilliant explainer videos, you get a lot more than a video that just looks nice. You get an explainer that’s tailored to your brand. A video that’s designed, head to toe, to convey who your brand is.

Design

Based on the script, your agency will create still images including scene and character designs. This is when your video starts to come to life. Great design takes talent, experience and time. These design elements include colour palettes, character and element designs, style of design etc. Once a style has been chosen, the illustrator will start visualizing the script with the chosen style.
The strategy behind the graphics is what makes your video a success. Getting the design right in your explainer video means you get a final product tailor-made to produce the exact results you need it to Remember, design is fiddly and time-consuming but defines a lot for your brand.

Style

Experienced creators put the storyboard and character designs in motion. Even with help from computers, this step is time-consuming and requires skill to get it just right.

Your agency can choose from among various styles for your video like:
1. Whiteboard Animation:
It’s a type of video that uses the style of graphics being hand-drawn on a whiteboard-like background and involves a voice-over narrator that complements the visuals and conveys the main ideas of the piece.
2. Hybrid Videos:
These videos are gaining a lot of popularity for SaaS Explainers in the recent days. They essentially show a live person speaking about your service/tool explaining the storyline giving it a relatable element and the experience of speaking to someone firsthand while looking at real views of your service/tool, helping people navigate and learn better.
3. 2-D Animation:
Here, 2-dimensional characters and elements are used to convey a story or explain a service. These are quite easy to produce in comparison to 3-D character and element designs and hence also more flexible for changes but still take quite a while to create.
4. 3-D Animation:
The elements here are designed and rendered in a 3-dimensional environment and hence take a lot of time to create but can add a more realistic or engaging effect to your video. They are usually used to showcase difficult-to-describe physical products.
5. Complete Live Action:
These are often seen with brands that have physical products as people are able to better relate and see the product usage firsthand, but have a high production cost.
While the first 3 types of videos are relatively lower priced, with a larger budget for your video, you can afford to spend more time having animators create in 3D, add shadows and highlights or even go for a really high production quality live action video.

While all of those things add time and expense to the production process, a skilled creator can just make your finished product more worthy of the brand it’s representing.

Sound Design and Voice Overs

This is an often overlooked part of a video that involves adding and balancing custom background music, audio cleaning and processing, and voiceovers to polish off your video.
We get asked sometimes whether a voice-over is even worth it. The answer is that this is more a creative decision and not a cost decision. A voice-over can help you set up and carry the viewer across the whole storyline while explaining your product to them along the way.

Not just that, It needs to be recorded by a professional voice actor in a closed and soundproof vocal booth to avoid room ambience. A high-end audio recording device is used to ensure the crispness of the voice being recorded. Hence, using stock audio as much as possible could drive down the costs by quite a bit.

Stock Elements

It takes quite a while to understand your brand and scourge through the internet, looking for the perfect B-rolls and stock elements and footage that can portray your brand better and add to cost while reducing the work required to create these assets which could take days, if not months.

The different types of B2B video content marketing include:

Explainer Videos

Short marketing videos intended to explain your company’s product or service are known as explainer videos. Explainer videos are frequently used on a landing page, the main page of your website, or a prominent product page.

Tutorial/Training videos

A goal of using video to transform a passive viewing experience into an active learning experience. This is accomplished through “video tutorials”.

Video tutorials are a series of videos explaining different aspects of your product, the integrations and everything else that could help your users work faster and better. Think of video tutorials as your 24/7 sales & support reps.

Product demos

A product demo is a demonstration to an existing or prospective customer of the value of your product or service. It usually entails a presentation of the product’s key features and capabilities.

Video testimonials

Clients telling audiences how amazing your brand is in an innovative and compelling way is a testimonial video. They are designed to foster trust between target audiences and brands, as well as to move customers farther down the sales funnel, making them a highly successful marketing tool.
Of these, instructional videos or Explainer videos win 67% of the votes for the most-watched videos. In fact, 77% of viewers watch an explainer video for up to 2 minutes!

Final Words

You can sometimes save money, with DIY Tools and freelancers, but in our view, it’s a bit of an amateur alert. If you are really that tight on a budget, you can check out The ultimate guide to making SaaS onboarding videos from scratch here.
Here are a few simple things you could do to reduce the cost of your explainer video:
  1. Make it shorter. i.e keep it down to 60s rather than having a 120s explainer
  2. Be adamant about an amazing script, but rely on simple visuals.
  3. It’s all about keeping it simple
  4. Incorporate simple elements into your video but make it relatable and visually understandable
Quality explainer videos are an investment that grows your business. Make sure you make the right choice when selecting your agency. When you consider the cost, make sure you consider both the out-of-pocket expense and the business you might end up gaining as your ROI. Good explainer videos, end up paying for themselves.

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