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Video Animation: How to Engage and Captivate Your Audience

11 Min Read

You might know a little about all the different types of videos there are — welcome videos, how-to videos, brand videos, and more — but how much do you know about video styles?

The style of a video refers to the treatment of the content and not the content itself. You can have a welcome video, for instance, presented in the style of a documentary, a narrative, a lifestyle piece, or in animation. The style you use can add a lot to your video, affecting how emotional it is, how effective the messaging is, or how the viewer responds.

That’s why you want to make sure you pick the style that not only fits your brand the best, but fits your video goals.

Let’s take a look at one of the most fun, though possibly the most complicated, style of video there is: animation.

Types of Animation

Animated videos are especially good at explaining difficult-to-understand concepts and products, especially since 65 percent of people are visual learners and 90 percent of the information transmitted to the brain is visual.

Animation comes in many forms; here are just a few to get you started.

Whiteboard Animation

Whiteboard animation videos are especially good for explaining difficult-to-understand concepts. They usually include a live action element, like a hand coming in and out of frame to do the actual drawing. These videos are captivating and, even when longer than our recommended 30-second to one-minute length, can hold the viewer’s attention and help them retain more information.    

These are great for explaining more complex products or services, especially those in the tech, medical, and software as a service industries. Because you’re presenting information on a whiteboard, people expect to learn — except they’re learning in a more engaging, interactive way.

Kinetic Typography

You’ve definitely seen typographic animation, whether you know it or not! Also known as kinetic typography, this is basically the art of moving text. Entire videos can be composed of visually stimulating, moving text, or they can come in as an element in any other type of video.

The magic of kinetic typography is its ability to keep the viewer engaged. Because text is actively moving on the screen, the user is compelled to read it. You can animate single letters or entire words, creating a beautiful visual scene made even stronger by the right voiceover or music.

If you have important information you want the audience to remember, like a location, date, or time, consider introducing this information with kinetic typography. If you have statistics that would be too difficult to communicate visually, use an interesting text graphic. If you have voiceover, but want something to stand out in the viewer’s mind, overlay kinetic typography in your video. The options are endless!

Cartoon Animation

Cartoons are most commonly associated with animation — and rightly so! Most of us have a favorite cartoon from childhood, a favorite cartoon movie, or a cartoon short that we can watch over and over again.  

They’re highly engaging and because of our association with them, cartoon videos often have higher views and higher view-through rates than their non-animated counterparts. They can be used to communicate just about any message, from tips and tricks to general brand overviews.

But cartoon videos can be the most complex to create, since they require a lot of technical skill and time, depending on quality. Luckily, they’re also one of the cheapest options, since you don’t have to pay art directors, set dressers, actors, or pay for a location.

Think strategically about when to use cartoons. They’re best suited for fun, playful content and shorter lengths, one of the favorite go-to’s for branded social media posts.

Live Action and Animation Combo

This is one of the most common uses for animation, since the combination styles are virtually endless. Use live actors or product shots with overlaid graphics, kinetic typography, cartoon interspersals, and more. The combination can make understanding how your product or service works easier, while forming a more personal connection with the viewer.

What’s better than mesmerizing, animated content paired with relatable, live action? Even a text graphic introducing the person onscreen can be considered animation, so don’t feel limited by technical skill or budget. Any compelling visual elements added to a live action video can help increase your view-through rate and keep your viewers engaged.

Infographic Animation

Consider using animation when you want to present any statistical or number-heavy content. Just like static infographics, infographic animation helps make complex numerical data easier to understand and visualize.

This is one of the easiest types of animation to produce, so use it whenever you can. From moving graphs, to charts and tables, infographics in your video will help make information memorable.

This type of video is great for social media. Make it fun and feel free to use elements of infographic animation in your live action videos.

When to Use Animation

You should always be open to using animation in your videos, though the type of animation can definitely differ. Simple kinetic typography or infographic animation can be the simplest to implement, while fully animated cartoons or 3D animation can be more time or cost prohibitive.

Here’s a quick 3-step guide to help get you started.

  1. Outline your campaign’s goals and metrics for success.

Before planning out the entire strategy and production schedule for your video, be sure to know what exactly you want to accomplish. What are your goals? You won’t know what type of video to produce, or in what style, until you’ve got your goal in mind. Then, figure out how to measure for these results.

  1. Plan your video strategy and execution.

Now that you’ve got your goals in mind, you can begin planning your video strategy. Be sure your strategy aligns with your goals. What kind of video will you make? Who will produce it? How much of it should be animated? Where will you distribute it?

  1. Plan your resources, time, and schedule.

This is where you’ll be able to figure out if you’ve got the time and resources to add animation to your video. Talk to your production team about how long creating and animating content will take and ask for examples of their previous work.

Is animation still a viable option? Should you use it heavily (a fully animated cartoon) or not (maybe just add elements of animation here and there)? If you find animation aligns with your strategy and can get you closer to reaching your success goals, then you’re ready to get started.

Animation Tips and Tricks

Don’t forget, strategy is crucial! You may feel like everything’s in place to create an awesome animated video, but you need to keep a few things in mind before getting your feet off the ground.

  • Always be brand consistent. Make sure whatever video you create, animated or otherwise, tells your brand story clearly and keeps your mission at the forefront.
  • Keep framing in mind. Some platforms overlay logos in certain corners and some automatically add captions to the bottom of your video. Be sure to keep these areas clear of text or crucial animation.
  • Keep your video short. Animation helps captivate your audience, but even a 10-minute animated video can drain your audience and lose your viewers. Keep it under two minutes, tops.
  • Remember your headline. Videos are visual, but you still need a compelling headline to draw your viewers in and help with SEO.
  • Don’t forget your Pros and Cons list. Animation can be cheaper to create, but can take much longer. Not every agency is equipped to animate beautifully. Animation can draw in more viewers, but may not lead to the results you want. Write out all the pros and cons to determine what you’re willing to risk.

Now, you’ve got all the tools you need to create an animated video that’ll captivate your audience and hopefully lead to more sales and revenue.

Need an agency to help you with your video strategy and creation phases? Schedule a call with one of our creative producers today. We’ve got tons of experience creating all kinds of animation and can help bring your video to life.

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