How I Created My Explainer Video

canva website background with GB logo

Posted created by Glory Burford
Applied IMC (Winter 2023)

Last Fall for my integrated marketing communications course at Western Washington University, I started developing my personal professional brand, complete with a creative brief, brand elements, and this website! One of the parts of the website that I was most excited to do was the explainer video, as I love utilizing video editing to tell a story.

Why a Video?

We live in a digital world, specifically a digital video world. Studies have shown that our brains process visuals 60,000 times faster than plain text. Hubspot also found that video content is preferred over other forms of content from brands/businesses. It is also clear that short videos (90 seconds or less) have much higher retention—viewers are more likely to watch the video all the way through, as most people lose interest very shortly into long videos.

Since I am trying to drive awareness of my brand, I used this approach to grab viewers’ attention and ensure recall and engagement when they visit my website!


Getting it Done

I started out by looking at my brand creative strategy; What were my value proposition and brand elements, and how could I apply them to my explainer video so that it would be integrated with my brand? From there, I decided to state my value proposition in the video itself, as repetition is key for information recall. I also knew I wanted to highlight my marketable skills and examples of my work from my portfolio.

When brainstorming ideas for my video, I decided that I did not want to film myself speaking on camera for two reasons: I felt that I would not be able to achieve the specific “rhythm” I wanted, and I was on a time crunch. This meant I needed to use the resources I already had.

iPhone screenshot showing how to save as video

All iPhones after the 6s can take live photos. As you can see in my screenshots to the left, you can turn those live photos into videos by clicking the share button in the bottom left, then scrolling down to the “Save as Video” option. While scrolling through the live photos in my camera roll, I referenced my brand elements in order to pick appropriate clips.


brand elements image showing look smell sound and taste

When you watch my explainer video, you can see that I used clips that correspond with my various brand elements, even including a mocha with cinnamon sprinkled on top to go with the smell and taste elements.

As far as editing software goes, I decided to use Canva. Though it was glitchy at times, it also afforded me a great amount of flexibility and control to create my video as close as possible to what I pictured in my head. In order to match the youthful and friendly tone of my website and brand, I wanted to use energetic editing with words quickly appearing on the screen.

An example of this is when I featured my technical skills in the video. Canva doesn’t let you display multiple blocks of text at different times in the same clip, so I had to cut my video of the sunset into multiple separate short clips and display a new skill on each clip, while keeping the text that was already on screen. I also adjusted the length of each clip to achieve the snappy speed I wanted.

editing software screenshot

If you use the same approach as I did, remember to fade the background video so the overlaying text is clearly visible. To do this, click on the background video and select “Edit video,” then go to the “Adjust” tab and move the “Fade” to where you want. It may also help to put a “Lift” effect on the text: this puts a shadow behind the text, visually ‘lifting’ it from the background.

Once I had all my visual elements put together, I went to to find an upbeat, royalty free music track to use—Remember to credit any royalty free music you use in the description of your video! Once I uploaded my video to YouTube, I could easily embed it in the homepage of my website by inserting a YouTube block and pasting my video link into it.

I hope reading about my process helps you to create a stunning and unique explainer video for your own brand. Whatever approach you end up taking, make sure it aligns with your creative strategy and brand elements to ensure cohesive and integrated branding!