With the Internet full of online content, it can be hard to tell which pieces gain the most traction with your audience. The world-wide web is full of articles and lists — but in 2015, video views had a 42% year-over-year growth from 2014 (3 times the previous year’s growth rate).
- Source: Invodo, 2015 Product Video Benchmarks Report
To increase the connection with your audience and maximize on this medium, consider complementing your word wizardry with motion graphics or video content. What would your audience best respond to? Consider that while all motion graphics are videos, not all videos are motion graphics — and that changes the tone as well as the style.
Recent reports hypothesize that video will comprise 79% of all internet traffic by 2018, and social video generates 1200% more shares than stationary images. To make that trend work for you, integrate both motion graphics and video into your content strategy.
- Source: Invodo, Video Statistics: The Marketer’s Summary 2016
To consider how to make the most of video and motion graphics, we checked in with Nic Hartmann, Senior Motion Designer, to get his perspective on the mediums and what they offer.
Q: What kind of impact do motion graphics and videos have for a viewer?
A: There’s a parallel between what we experience in real life and what we see a represented on a screen. This helps us relate better to a topic, so a video or motion graphic is more likely to effect some change in our way of thinking. Also, that connection between screen-based movement and what we see every day can increase the emotional impact.
Q: Why are these kinds of visuals useful in today’s low-attention-span world?
A: Well, I think they have the power to captivate a viewer — to grab and hold their attention for a longer time than something that is static or text. It’s easier to absorb information watching a video than reading and processing words and having to go back and re-read. With videos, the viewer can watch and walk away with whatever message the video is trying to convey.
Q: What do you look for in an effective or engaging motion graphic or video?
A: There needs to be constant movement on the screen, even if there is text or language that takes time to absorb. As long as something is always moving — even if it’s just a camera slowly panning in or zooming in — that’s key. Smooth transitions that don’t distract from the subject matter also help. At the same time, the piece should tell some kind of story. It doesn’t have to be a story about a person — abstraction works just fine. All elements on the screen (transitions, images) should identify with the goal that the video is trying to achieve. So, if the video is about national parks, there shouldn’t be jarring elements that have nothing to do with national parks. The transitions, music, and screen elements should all feel like they’re part of the national park story. In a word, everything should be cohesive.
Q: What should people look for when applying motion graphics or video to their content strategy?
A: For people who have content and want to use motion in their strategy, work with ideas that engage their audience. In terms of direction, keep the target group in mind, and ask questions: Is this style too cartoon-like? Too austere? Does my audience prefer flashy videos or minimal ones? Also, make sure to consider brand identity. Does the piece fit in with the brand? Motion and video projects can be a great tool for thought leadership, so consider how the piece connects to your company persona. Finally, don’t sacrifice quality. You have the responsibility of creating high quality work to not clutter your audience’s visual space.
Q: What industry trends or techniques are most exciting to you today?
A: A big trend is the seamless integration of 3D elements into 2D space — predominantly with motion graphics. Since we’ve moved away from minimalism, which was really big in 2014, most graphics aren’t fully 3D and also not fully 2D. Illustrators are getting really good at making things look like they’re 3D even when they’re not. Otherwise, filters are getting air time: cartoon effects, squigglevision, scratch marks to seem like actual film. There’s a lot of stylistic enhancements to simple artwork. Also, some amazing character animation is emerging. A few years ago, there weren’t a lot of gradients or shadows. Now, there’s a blend of frame-by-frame animation and tweening (which digitally guesses the information between frames) that looks like classical animation.
Q: What else should someone consider about motion graphics or videos?
A: If you’re trying to engage an audience, tell a story, or impact change, motion or video are great. The multi-sensory approach of sound and sight helps to emphasize enthusiasm and passion, keeping communication at the heart of a piece — it builds a human connection for your viewers.
To learn more about our motion graphics services, click here. Have something to say or want to ask a question? Comment below.