video release notes

As a software developer, you have poured a lot of time and effort into creating an exceptional product update, only to find out that the release notes go unnoticed by users. 

In an era where attention is fleeting, the power of videos becomes indispensable. Videos not only capture your audience’s attention, but also they excel in showcasing the brilliance of new software features. 

This article delves into the realm of video release notes, exploring the strategic impact videos have on user experience and understanding. We’ll walk you through 10 real-life compelling examples of video release notes and share tricks in crafting effective video release notes. 

Table of Contents

What Are Video Release Notes?

Video release notes are another way for developers to communicate updates, improvements, and new features to users in a more engaging way than traditional product release notes. 

Rather than just containing text or screenshots explaining what the engineers tweaked or updated, videos help provide the user with a dynamic walkthrough of the update. These videos often include live demonstrations and screen sharing. Engineers can demonstrate how specific problems were addressed and show the functionality of a new feature in action. 

AnnounceKit simplifies the communication of release notes for companies. With AnnounceKit’s user-friendly tool, you can seamlessly embed videos or share a video link to enhance your release notes. This feature allows for a more engaging and dynamic way to communicate updates and improvements to your audience. 


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Why Are Video Release Notes Valuable to Users?

Video release notes offer unparalleled value by providing a dynamic and immersive user experience. Unlike static screenshots or written explanations, videos bring updates or new features to life. Demonstrating how a problem was fixed or illustrating the functionality of the new feature fosters a deeper understanding. Users can visually grasp the changes that go beyond the written text. The visual context not only enhances the user’s comprehension but also captures their attention.

How Video Release Notes Can Improve User Understanding

When introducing a brand new feature, leveraging release notes through embedded video becomes invaluable for improving user comprehension. The creator can share their screen, guiding users through the issue, the resolution to the problem, and new features. Pages with videos average 6-minute user engagement, surpassing the 4.3 minutes without videos. Video release notes not only improve comprehension but also keep users engaged for longer durations. 

Does Every Release Note Need a Video?

While video release notes can be a powerful communication tool, not every release note needs a video. The decision to create a video alongside your release note should be guided by the significance and complexity of the changes. Here are some instances when a video may not be necessary:

  • Small Bug Fixes: For minor bug fixes that few people encounter, a detailed video may be overkill. In these cases, a concise written description will suffice. 
  • Simple Updates or Features: If the update or new feature can be easily explained in one sentence, it likely does not warrant a video. Clear and succinct written communication may be more appropriate. 
  • Changes Impacting a Small User Base:  Updates that only impact a small group of users likely don’t need a video. The focus should be on written communication targeted to reach the specific audience that the update impacts.

By accessing the scope and impact of each update, you can tailor your communication strategy and reserve video release notes for those instances where it can add the most value. 

How To Make an Effective Release Note Video

Once you have determined that a video is appropriate and adds value in the context of your release note, you need to know how to make an effective video. Here are some key strategies for making effective release note videos: 

  • Keep it simple: Effective videos do not need to be elaborate. This can be a simple screen-sharing video that highlights what was wrong before and how it’s fixed. In the case of a new feature, you can screenshare how the new feature operates. 
  • Embrace short videos: Avoid lengthy videos. People are more likely to engage in shorter content. In the era of diminishing attention spans — even shorter than a goldfish’s — aim for 2-3 minute videos that succinctly cover the different aspects of the release note. This makes sure the users aren’t overwhelmed or bogged down by a lengthy explanation. 
  • Use segmented content: If you’re struggling to keep the video under 3 minutes, you should consider creating several shorter videos, with each video focusing on a specific fix or new feature. The videos can be interspersed in the written release note.

10 Great Examples of Video Release Notes

In the upcoming section, we will present 10 outstanding examples of videos seamlessly integrated into video release notes. These examples demonstrate how videos elevate user engagement, enhance comprehension, and deliver a dynamic user experience. 

Many of the same principles of written release notes apply to the video context. Dive in, watch these demonstrations, and let these examples inspire you with fresh ideas for incorporating videos into your next release note. 

#1: Descript

While screen sharing is one of the benefits of using videos in your release notes, consider taking it a step further by presenting face-to-face with the user on video. By talking directly with the user on camera, the video makes it feel more personal. 

The inclusion of closed captioning enhances user accessibility, making the content more exclusive. This video demonstrates how the company values improvement and emphasizes a personal commitment to enhancing user experience. 

#2: Coffee Stain Studios

While this particular example challenges the guidelines we discussed previously regarding length and simplicity, it undeniably proves that some rules are worth breaking. 

Despite not adhering to the “less is more” concept, the animation in this video is both entertaining and funny, translating to great user engagement (over 2000 comments on the YouTube link). If your business has the resources for video updates like this, go for it!

#3: Firewalla

Contrasting with the previous video, this example illustrates the power of simplicity. The company does a great job of outlining the updates at the video’s start. 

Utilizing screen sharing, subtle animations on where to click, and strategically placed text throughout screen sharing, this video provides a clear showcase of updated features. 

#4: ServiceTitan

While this video also breaks the rule of brevity, it makes sense in this context. This company strategically utilizes seasonal video release notes, consolidating a multitude of updates in a single release. 

If you wanted to, you could consider breaking up this video into multiple segments and distributing these shorter videos throughout the text of your release note.

#5: GameCross

In a unique approach, this game company known for their game, Palworld, leveraged video release notes in an exciting way. They communicated their updates by showcasing the game as if the players were actively engaged.

 While this method may be specific to the gaming industry, it shows how you should consider your company’s context. If there’s an opportunity to incorporate unique aspects of your product or service in your video, embrace it! Tailoring your approach to your company’s context can make it more engaging for your users.

#6: Firebase

In this video release note, the presenter adeptly acknowledges that smaller updates can be easily overlooked. By directly communicating the problem, a practical solution is presented — highlighting favorite updates in regular episodes of release notes. 

The presenter also excels in speaking directly to the users while seamlessly incorporating screen sharing and closed captioning. This ensures a comprehensive and engaging communication experience. 

#7: Talend

We have shown examples with elaborate features, but this example demonstrates the effectiveness of simplicity. This video provides a wealth of update information in a clear and concise format. 

The creator uses transitioning slides to effectively break down the content, ensuring a smooth flow between different updates. This serves as a compelling reminder that simplicity works in conveying your message to users. 

#8: N-able

This presenter does a great job providing clarity by outlining the content at the start of the video. He also utilizes short and animated text alongside direct communication with the viewer. 

The thoughtful use of sections or chapters within the YouTube video enhances the viewer’s experience. This allows the viewer to easily navigate to specific topics. Notably, the “coming soon” section adds anticipation and helpful insights to the release notes.

#9: Windows 11

This company uses video release notes every month. The presenter acknowledges that the video would be too long to go over each update in a detailed manner, so the presenter directs viewers to the hyperlink for the full release note. 

This video is a great example of how video release notes can be used as an educational tool. The presenter goes beyond just announcements. She provides valuable tips and insights, making the video more instructive for the viewers. 

#10: GlassHive

This video demonstrates how a video release note should be more than just a list of updates. The presenter skillfully communicates the relevance of the updates to the user, emphasizing the benefits. In just two and a half minutes, this company shows how short and focused videos can effectively convey comprehensive information. 


Quick Setup, Easy to Use, and Many Integrations

Manage your product announcements from a single place and easily distribute them
across multiple channels.

Go to Website

AnnounceKit Helps You Easily Send Video Updates to Your Users

In the competitive world of software, a compelling release note is critical for effective communication, fostering feature adoption, and building customer trust. Adding video to your release notes makes it all the more effective. 

Enter AnnounceKit — your ally in simplicity. Our software ensures that your engineering hours are invested where they matter most: product improvement. 

With our user-friendly interface, AnnounceKit takes release notes to the next level by helping you:

  • Easily embed videos seamlessly into your release notes.
  • Integrate feedback forms.
  • Effortlessly gather and interpret data.

Just like you, we’re committed to improvement. Rest assured, our upcoming improvements to our software will feature great videos, keeping you in the loop for all our new enhancements.  

Let AnnounceKit ensure all your hard work in updates does not go unnoticed by your customers. 

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