Animation is a powerful tool to enhance and support any video, especially now more than ever, since it can be produced remotely while social distancing. However, it can also require more man hours to produce per second than live action footage, and those can multiply if animations aren’t planned with the same care as live action shots. Luckily, there are several easy steps you can take to make sure your video agency can create top-tier motion graphics for your brand, quickly and efficiently.
1. Know Your Brand. Your company invested significant thought and work for your logo and brand design. Know where your master assets are saved! You probably usually use a JPEG or PNG image on a day to day basis, but if you know where your source files are (usually in the form of an Adobe Illustrator .AI or Photoshop .PSD document), these files will ensure you quality and efficiency.
Using a source file helps an animator to easily separate out all the individual elements to be animated, rather than having to methodically slice an image apart. This is the first step in individually moving different parts of an image, and can be one of the most time-consuming if high quality files aren’t available.
Look at all the layers! There are few things more beautiful than organized files.
Additionally, If you have brand guidelines, keep them at the ready! With a brand guide, your animator can quickly create top-quality motion graphics already suited to your company’s look and messaging.
2. Get cozy with Typography. Know what fonts your brand uses and where they are located! Typography is an essential part of how you communicate to clients and other businesses. This will let your animator create professional graphics and moving type that are part of your brand.
Can’t find your fonts? Fonts are typically stored as .OTF or .TTF files, and can be found within the program Font Book on Mac systems (left) or in the Fonts folder on Windows computers (right).
3. A picture is worth a thousand pixels (or two). Just because an image looks great on your computer monitor or the phone you took it on doesn’t mean it’s ideal for the big screen. A standard High Definition video is 1920 pixels wide by 1080 pixels tall. If your image or video is less than 1920 pixels wide, it will appear pixelated and blurry when blown up to full HD.
To find your image size, right click on your file, then click “Get Info” on Mac OSX or “Properties” on Windows, and look for the “Dimensions” property.
The bigger the better! Having a larger size than necessary allows your animator to add effects like panning, zooming, and parallax, to give life to your still images.
4. Reduce, reuse, recycle! If you’re happy with your results, why would you reinvent the wheel each time? Having good animation and marketing assets in your possession actually opens up the possibilities to creating more video content that fits within your overall video marketing strategy. Logo animations, transitions, type animations, and graphic styles can all be reused from video to video. Investing up front in a solid motion graphics package that can be reused by your video agency will often save you time in the long run, especially if you plan on making many videos in the same series or style. Take this as an example — If you’ve been wanting to create a video series to educate your clients about your value, you can use your organization’s logo to create a custom animation for that series. Having something to tie a series of content together is a great branding technique that just requires a little upfront planning.
At Spotted Yeti Media we talk a lot about having a plan (strategy), and that’s because we think having foresight into your organization’s goals helps tell your story more efficiently. It also ensures workflow efficiencies — staying organized is a great way to open yourself up to big ideas because creatively, the sky is the limit. If this all resonates with you, and you're eager to add some animation into your video marketing strategy (especially while social distancing), drop us a line! We're here to help.