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Considerations for Explainer Video Music

Updated: Jul 11, 2019

Like big-budget Hollywood films, animated explainer videos can also benefit from the appropriate use of music. Whether it's needed for your production will depend on the specific goals of you video. It will also depend on the type of metaphor and/or story you employ. Here are a few things to consider when deciding what's right for you.

Music Conveys Emotion If it's important for you to convey an emotion--such as happiness, humor, or even frustration--there's no more powerful tool than music. Filmmakers have been using music for years and whether you're always aware of it's effects, it has a powerful impact on our feelings. If you don't believe me, try watching a scary or exciting movie sequence with the sound off. Chances are you won't feel anything close to what you would with the sound on. Here's a fun example of how music can add energy to an explainer video (music starts at 0:37).


Marketers Use Music Music has a powerful impact on our emotions, but it's also a subtle indicator to the audience that they are probably watching a marketing piece meant to sell something. If the music is too obvious in its intent, or is too overpowering, it can be counterproductive. Remember: just because you can do something doesn't mean you should.

Metaphors and Stories Some of the metaphors we use in our stories are powerful enough that they don't require music. A jet airplane or train, for example, may give the audience enough interesting sounds that music seems like overkill. Here are two examples of explainer videos that use metaphors with powerful sound effects. Although we could have added music, it wasn't critical in these cases.



When a story relies heavily on emotional story elements, music can be a great way to help bring the video to life. It can also be a great way to add humorous elements to the story, as we did in the explainer video below. In the third segment of this whiteboard series, we wanted to show how employees could get themselves in trouble. Music was a fun way to drive home the point.


Custom Music Can Take Your Video to the Next Level  Music, especially custom music made to perfectly match the "beats" and emotions of your story, can help to elevate your explainer video to the next level. It's not easy and it takes additional time, but it can definitely be worth it. Here's an engaging example from a whiteboard animation we created for Canon. Custom music helped bring the explainer video to life.


Still not sure whether you need music for your next explainer video? Contact us and we can talk you through what makes the most sense. After all, our goal isn't to sell you music, it's to help you make the best video possible to achieve your goals!

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