What is an Animated Video?
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What Is an Animated Video?

We’re here to help you choose the most appropriate content types to fulfill your content strategy. In this series, we’re breaking down the most popular content types to their most basic fundamentals — simple definitions, clarity on formats, and plenty of examples — so you can start with a solid foundation.

What is an animated video?

Animated videos are videos created with original designs, drawings, illustrations or computer-generated effects that have been made to move in an eye-catching way using any number of artistic styles. Although they may integrate live action video, they don’t require any live action recording to convey an idea or story.

Different types of animated videos include…

  • Cartoons
  • 2D animation
  • 3D animation
  • CGI
  • Whiteboard animations
  • Motion graphics
  • Stop-motion animation (a la “claymation”)
  • Kinetic typography
  • Flipbook or stick-figure animation

Standard length ranges for animated videos

The long and short of it

When choosing a length for an animated video, first consider the purpose of the video (Is it more informational than promotional?) and the platform(s) you intend to promote the video on. For instance, animated videos under 30 seconds automatically loop on many social media platforms — over that length and they don’t. Or, if you’re buying ad spots on a broadcast, time requirements for spots are often down to the millisecond.

A general guide to animated video length:

  • Short Form (15 seconds) —   Good for looping ads 
  • Standard Form (30 seconds) — Good for ads, looping or not
  • Long Form (60 seconds) — Good for explainer videos
  • Extra Long Form (90 seconds) — Good for in-depth explainer videos or brand stories

Why produce animated videos?

If you’re in charge of planning a diverse mix of deliverables in a content plan, animation will always present an elegant and cost-effective alternative to live-action video production.

Like motion graphics, animation is a compelling way to tell a story, letting you do things that could never be done in the real world — without breaking the bank. For instance, this creative celebration of filmmaker Stanley Kubrick’s filmography.

Popular use cases for animated videos…

  • Explainer videos
  • Instructional videos
  • Short films
  • Branded videos
  • Corporate videos
  • Product demos

Businesses that could use motion graphics…

Any business that has a small budget for video marketing will have more avenues to choose from in the realm of animated video options — versus anything on the live-action front.  

Animated video examples – short form

Animated video examples – standard form

Animated video examples – long form

Animated video examples – extra long form

 

Understanding content quality in examples

Our team has rated content type examples in three degrees of quality (Good, Better, Best) to help you better gauge resources needed for your content plan. In general, the degrees of content quality correspond to our three content levels (General, Qualified, Expert) based on the criteria below. Please consider there are multiple variables that could determine the cost, completion time, or content level for any content piece with a perceived degree of quality. 

A chart about content quality

More content types with examples:

 

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Gregg Rosenzweig

About Gregg

Over the past two decades, Gregg Rosenzweig has spent his career writing, producing and publishing engaging content for American mass consumption in the digital, TV and branded content spaces. From serving as a Creative Director on commercial spots to pitching/winning/executing branded content campaigns for Fortune 100 companies, Gregg's been fortunate to work for (and with) top advertising and digital media agencies... as well as some of the most highly respected publishers across the media landscape.

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