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Tips for Advertising Animation

Nov 18th 2015 at 10:41 PM

Animation has become quite popular in modern-day digital advertising. Its ability to attract attention, communicate brand messages, and improve brand recall in consumers has made it a valuable asset to many marketing campaigns. However, creating advertising animation that achieves the results you need in your own campaign requires careful thought and skillful design. Following are a few of the steps needed to create truly effective commercial animation.

Use your target audience in your character design.

Central to many advertising animation projects are the mascots who populate them. These characters have the potential to become the face of your company and often allow consumers to feel a rapport with your company that will encourage them to buy from you. The key to creating these kinds of effective mascots is to develop characters who reflect your target audience.

The best way to do so is to create a buyer persona first. This persona is a detailed description of your target audience that includes gender, age, affluence, location, interests, and more. Your animated character should then reflect some of these values in order to connect with your target audience at a visceral level. When your target audience recognizes themselves in that character, they will more easily identify with and trust that character (and, by extension, your business).

Know what you want to achieve with your advertising animation.

There are almost as many animation styles and design choices as there are animators. In order to narrow the field down to the elements that will be most effective for your project, you need to know what your goals are. For instance, if you want to demonstrate a new product, an animated explainer video might be the best choice, but if you want to build brand awareness, you might find that another type of animated project works better. In another example, the style and characters you use will be different for an in-house project than for a customer-focused marketing campaign. Therefore, defining your goals for the project, and then communicating these goals to your animation partner, is essential if you are to craft an effective project.

Choose a style that meshes with your brand.

Just as the goals of your advertising animation will guide its style, so should the particulars of your brand. A well-developed brand will already have its own personality and values attached to it. The style you choose should reflect these. For instance, a lighthearted video might be right for one company, while a more serious project might be better suited for another. Even choosing whether to select a video, a cartoon, a banner ad, etc., will depend at least in part on your brand and target audience. As a result, you should work closely with your animation partner to make sure that the style of your project matches the essence of your brand and the preferences of the consumers you hope to reach.

Animate brand elements.

Advertising animation is not limited to fully animated television commercials or explainer videos. Instead, this type of animation can be effective even if it is limited to animating certain brand elements in your marketing campaign. For instance, infographics on a website can be animated to attract viewer attention. Likewise, brand logos can be animated to make sure that viewers see the symbol for your business. These elements might sit within static text or images, but, once animated, provide a powerful way to draw attention to your brand. Doing so can increase brand awareness and attract the attention of potential customers and website visitors who might otherwise have skipped over your banner ad or video.

Use your brand design features in your advertising animation.

Just as a well-developed brand should already possess a personality and values, it should also possess certain design elements that distinguish it from other brands. These include fonts, design features, colors, and phrases that define the brand (For instance, the red target symbol is immediately recognizable as the logo for the Target brand). Effective advertising animation includes some of these elements in order to help the viewer more easily associate the animation with a particular brand. For instance, the color palette that defines your brand can show up in certain places within the animated explainer video or advertisement, or words and phrases associated with your brand can be used in the dialogue bubbles in a cartoon production. Even small touches of your branding elements can be effective in tying the advertisement seamlessly into your brand and allowing viewers to become more aware of your brand values.

Include a call to action.

A call to action is an integral part of any advertisement. Simply informing viewers of your brand values, products, or services may not be enough. Instead, encouraging them to take a concrete step toward engaging with your business is usually necessary. This call to action often gives them the push they need to look at your business more closely. Advertising animation is no different. While your characters and the world within which they live is animated, the need to reach your audience in the real world still remains. As a result, your project should include a call to action. This call can be delivered through a written message, given by the animated brand ambassador, or by some other means. Whichever method you choose, this call to action makes your animation a powerful tool for reaching potential consumers.

Advertising animation is a powerful force for building brand awareness and attracting customers to your business. By using your target audience in your character design, knowing what you want to achieve with your animation, choosing a style that meshes with your brand, animating brand elements, including brand design features in the animation, and including a call to action, you can communicate your brand in a uniquely memorable and appealing way.

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