Animated videos for business are hot. Many companies are doing it but, how much does an animated video cost? To have an idea of price, first we need to understand what goes into putting together an animated video.
Pricing an animation video can be roughly divided into two categories: Style and Length.
The style of your animated video
The first question to ask about style is: will the video be based on ready-made illustration templates or is the art original? Many animation video companies, mainly the online ones, use ready-made templates to create videos for clients. That means no original or customized characters, backgrounds or icons. This kind of video has the advantage of being much cheaper than ones created with original illustrations. Nothing wrong with that, but the downside is that it greatly limits creativity and the kind of story your video can tell, and that means that your video will be less effective. Besides, your video will end up looking like a lot of other videos out there, so – it will not stand out.
The second question in animation video style is: what type of video do you need? To make it simple, let’s divide it into three categories: Motion Graphics, Character Animation and Whiteboard Videos.
Motion Graphics Video
That’s a video that consists mainly of type animation combined with stylized icons. Many times, it can include also pictures or even live action footage. This is a very popular kind of video, used by many companies. It can communicate information very effectively, but it tends to be a bit more technical, less emotionally engaging. Take what I just said with a grain of salt, please. With a great script, a motion graphics video can be very moving. Here’s an example of a motion graphics video:
You probably have seen many whiteboard videos online, they used to be very popular until a few years ago. They consist of static drawings that seem to be “drawn” in real-time. Usually, you’ll see a hand drawing them. The main characteristic is that the drawings themselves don’t move. Therefore, they tend to be less pricy than other kinds of video. Here also you’ll see a large price gap between template-based illustrations and original art. Needless to say, original art looks better and works better, but costs more. These types of videos are less frequent now. It seems that viewers are a bit tired of the style. Here’s an example of whiteboard video done with original artwork:
Character Animated Video
This is by far the most popular type of animation video for business. Why? Because people love stories, they connect much better with a good story than with statistics, pie charts and graphs. And for a good story, you need characters. The principle is simple: you build a short narrative that starts by exposing a problem, basically the problem your ideal client would have. You then go through the consequences of not solving this problem, and finally, you bring the ideal solution, which is your service or product. An effective character animation video will look good – meaning, its illustrations should look attractive and professional, and mainly be scripted in a creative way that engages the viewer right from the first few seconds. Using humor is always recommended. Technically, the most popular kind of animation used for these videos is 2D animation, which means the illustrations are flat, two-dimensional. The characters will not be turning and swirling, their movements are simple. If you have the budget, you can always go for 3D animation, but that is very expensive, so it is something that only big brands do. Here you have a good example of 2D character animated video:
The length of your animated video
This is very simple: the longer your video is, the more you will pay for it. In a live action video, adding another minute will usually not cost you extra money. This is not the case in animation. Creating animation is labor-intensive, and that is why animation companies usually charge by the minute. Depending on the company, that price can vary between a few hundred dollars a minute to 10.000/minute or more. We, for example, charge around $3.500 for a minute of animation, including creating a script. So, if you are thinking of an animated video for your business, make sure that your script stays between 60 to 90 seconds. This means between 150 and 230 words, roughly.
There are many options for animation companies out there, so how do you decide? Well, only you know how much you’re willing to invest, but remember: as with anything, you get what you pay for. You can go with one of the many online options, which will cost just a few hundred dollars. With that option, you will probably need to create the script yourself, and if that is not what you do for a living, that may not be very effective. The illustrations will be template-based, the creative options are very limited, and your video will look exactly like thousands of others. Creating an animated video for your business is an investment for which you want to see a return, meaning, you want it to generate business for you. So consider investing a bit more and going with a production company that will take the time to learn about your business, and then create a compelling and effective script and a visual style that will make your video stand out in a sea of sameness. That will certainly bring you better results, and that’s what we’re all about, aren’t we?
I hope this was helpful. Please leave a comment or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org if you would like me to write about any specific topic related to video for business.