The 6-Step Process for Working with An Explainer Video Company

One of the biggest mental hurdles for business owners in creating an explainer video is knowing what kind of time involvement they’ll need. When you already have so much on your plate, it feels like the sensible decision to delay creating that explainer video you know you need for your website. It’s a natural fear of the unknown. But there’s a very simple, tried and tested process for creating an explainer video. In this video, we will outline the involvement of a business owner in this process. Then, with our client's help, we’ll break down the time involved.

The Consultation Phase: Week 1 - 30 minutes

After seeing the high bounce rate on your homepage and searching the web for solutions, you discover that an explainer video could help and decide to contact some producers. Once you come across one you like, you decide to contact them. Here’s what happens next. The production company will contact you and set up a consultation meeting. The goal of the consultation meeting is to determine a fit between your needs and the production company’s skillset.

In advance of the meeting, they may ask you to fill out a customer discovery form so they get a better idea of your business goals and brand. In the consultation, the company will determine the ambition of your goal, the appropriate budget and the required timeframe.

Once the meeting has concluded and the terms have been verbally agreed upon, they’ll get back to you with a proposal and contract.

The Strategy Phase: Week 2 - 1 hour

Congratulations. The fun starts here in the creation phase. The next step is to hone a strategy tailored for the target audience that you’re looking to reach. This usually takes 1 hour, one-to-one with a production team member. You will work with the production company to determine an appropriate strategy to create a video that meets your marketing goals. You’ll articulate your target audience, video style, message and release plan. You will need to provide them with the following information:

Your ideal customer and what you want them to do after viewing the video
Your social media performance stats
Your competitors
The key selling points of your product/service
Your sales process
Any company testimonials you’ve received or could get
Case studies of work done for clients
A description of your brand

For extra credit, in advance of this meeting, think about the characteristics of your target audience (your ideal customer)—their age, gender, personality, occupation, income level, location etc. You can also research some videos from your competitors or industry peers.

The Pre-Production Phase: Week 3 - 2-3 hours

You will receive a shared folder from the production company that allows you to share and collaborate on files. Gather your digital assets: logos, brand colours, fonts, music and any other files and upload them to that folder. The production company will add a production plan to the shared folder in a week or two. This plan includes:

A shotlist – a text list of all the shots that need to be taken on the production day to make the video.
A storyboard - a representation of how the story of the video will play out.
A script - a written description of the video, visuals and words.

It’s now your job to review this material and add comments on the documents on any changes that need to be made. If the video is live-action (real life as opposed to animation), coordinate with the production company on the best available dates for your business. Within the week before production, make sure everything is camera ready. This means:

If you, your team or your client is on camera, make sure you/they have prep time to take in the media training guidelines outlined by the production company.
If your premises, product, or equipment is on camera, make sure everything is clean and ready to be presented in the best possible light by the production crew.

The Production Phase: Week 4 - 0-8 Hours

Your amount of involvement here can depend on the type of video you’ve decided to produce and your involvement in its production. If it’s a live-action video with actors, you or a member of your team may want to be there on the day to review footage and see how the shoot is going. Again, your involvement in this situation is entirely dependent on you.

If the video is live-action with you or a member of your team, then you may be looking at a day or two of production. Typically, videos like this are shot within one day with 2 hours per interview and 2-3 hours for collecting shots of your building or product. If the video is an animation, you won’t need to be involved in this stage of the process.

The Editing Phase: Week 5 - 1 Hour

The shoot’s a wrap, and now you’re onto production. You usually won’t have much involvement here until the production company completes a first draft of the video.

The production company will share a review link to the video through an editing collaboration platform like Here, you can watch the video and provide feedback comments that plug into the production company’s editing software. Usually, a production company will provide up to 3 rounds of editing, with additional rounds costing extra. Once you’re happy with the final version

The Release Phase: Week 6 - 0.5-2.5 Hours

Most production companies will require you to pay the remainder of their invoice to receive the final video. Some production companies will offer to handle the entire process, but others won’t. If you’re handling the release for your video, you’ll need to:

Receive the final video in the required formats from the production company and download them into a project folder.
Prepare for uploading by preparing a thumbnail (an image that represents the video before someone clicks play), writing a video description and a catchy title.
Upload your video to social media platforms and embed it on your website.
Set up the ads to get your video seen on social media and search.

If the production company handles all of this, you only have to worry about dealing with the new enquiries you’re getting. The next step to driving leads (your ideal customer) to your explainer video. If you’re interested in generating more leads for your explainer video, then subscribe to our newsletter as we’re publishing a video on that very topic next week.


Average Time Involved: 5-16 Hours, depending on your choices. If you or a member of your team can allocate that amount over six weeks, you too could have an explainer video in your sales tool kit. With Waking Dreams Media, you’ll be walked through the entire process on the way to creating the best possible explainer video for your business needs.

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