If you’re in marketing, chances are you’re selling a product or service. And if you are, you need your target audience to notice your product, understand what it is, and start to desire it. Enter the animated product video. Animated product videos are a great tool in your digital marketing toolbox, and when done well, they yield a fantastic ROI.
In this article, we’ll look at what animated product videos are, what benefits they have, and some of the different styles you can choose from. We’ll also list some of our favorite examples of animated product videos for your inspiration.
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What Is an Animated Product Video?
Before diving deeper into different styles of videos, let’s define what an animated product video is. Animated product videos are created with designs, illustrations or computer-generated effects, as opposed to live-action videos filming actual people or places.
An animated product video is a great way to show potential customers how your product works and what benefits it brings. You can use them to explain complicated products in layman’s terms, announce new product launches to the world, or show the value of particular product features.
In digital marketing, the competition is ever-increasing. Quality animated product videos are a great way to stand out in a saturated market and grab your prospects’ attention. And unlike live-action videos, an animated product video gives you complete freedom. No need to adapt to real-world limitations – with animations, anything and everything is possible.
Related reading: 7 Reasons B2B Video Production Should Be Part of Your Sales Toolkit
Benefits of Animated Product Videos
There are many benefits of animated product videos, and we’ve listed some of the here:
- Animated product videos help you explain complex concepts, ideas, and products.
- Product videos allow you to add your branding and vibe to onboarding processes and manuals.
- Animated product videos can help you increase conversions on your website and shorten the sales cycle.
- You can use animated product videos to help new audiences quickly understand and relate to your brand and product.
- Animated videos are easier to edit and update continually, so you don’t have to make a new video each time your product is updated.
Animations can also help you simplify and explain complex concepts and make otherwise dry and dull content fun and entertaining to consume. For most brands, animated product videos are a valuable addition to the marketing toolbox.
But how to know what type of animated video is right for you?
There are many options for visual styles for animated product videos. There’s a vast range of techniques to choose from, and every video creator will also add their style to your project.
Let’s look at the most popular types of animated explainer videos.
Related reading: How To Use Video Marketing to Simplify Your Sales Messaging
Different Styles Of Animated Product Videos
The Live-Action and Motion Graphics Explainer Video
You can often create really great things by combining live-action footage with motion graphics. This animated explainer video made for Paypal does exactly that in a wonderfully entertaining way. With this format, you get the best of two worlds: the human touch on the one hand and the unlimited creative possibilities of animations on the other.
The White Board Animation Explainer Video
This is a classic animation style for product videos that can be very effective in the proper context. It has the “human” touch of a person explaining something to you while simultaneously drawing it on a whiteboard, and it’s an efficient way to communicate. The whiteboard style gives excellent value for your money and is often best used when the information is more important than the branding side of things.
The Minimalist Explainer Video
Many times, keeping it simple will create a powerful result. A minimalistic take can help you put a laser focus on your message and reduce distracting elements. At Covalent, we won a Gold and Silver Addy for this animated explainer video in the minimalist style.
The Character Animation Explainer Video
Animating characters is a great way to help product videos come alive and a powerful tool for explaining all kinds of concepts and scenarios. This product video that we made for Sight on Scene is a nice example. Sight on Scene is a mapping tool that enables schools to create live-touch, interactive maps of their buildings to share with first responders and emergency personnel in the case of an emergency. The format allowed us to communicate about this scary topic in a friendly and less frightening way.
The On-Paper Explainer Video
We were asked to promote Ask Me Hear Me, a web application created to help break the stigma around mental illness and help people better understand mental health. We chose the “on paper” style to tell this important story of vulnerability and the importance of reaching out for help. This style comprises written words and sketches being “drawn on paper,” giving an authentic feel to the video.
The Stop Motion Explainer Video
Have you seen Wallace and Gromit? That’s classic stop-motion animation. The premise is simple: you draw or build a character, could be digitally or manually. Then you photograph it, change an element, and photograph it again. Stacking the pictures together will give you a stop-motion video. However, executing this is trickier than it sounds. But when it’s done well, the result can be very compelling.
This video that we made for the fashion handbag brand MCM, is a good example of how stop motion techniques can be used to showcase and enhance products.
The Pop Art Explainer Video
The pop-art style borrows visual elements such as the popping colors and monochrome images from the 60s and creates a fun and vibrant feel. This Spotify video is an excellent example of how you can implement a visual genre like pop art in a product video to create a video that conveys your message and strengthens your brand.
The Screencast Animation Explainer Video
This is a classic SaaS product style, aiming to show the viewer how a web or mobile app works. A screencast animation is great for explaining techy products and is basically an animated version of a website or app that shows the viewer how to maneuver your product step-by-step. Screencast videos make it easy to understand how to use your product. Animated screencasts and GIFs:s can also be integrated on your website, as Intercom does on their site.
8 Examples Of Great Animated Product Videos
If you’re looking for some inspiration before creating your own animated product video, you’re in the right place.
Below, we’ve listed some of our favorite examples of animated product videos from a wide range of different industries. They illustrate the variety of possibilities this medium offers, but they also share a few common traits. They all leverage storytelling, and they go all-in on creative execution.
The result? Amazing animated product videos that help customers understand the product and make the viewer fall in love with the brands and stories they tell.
When we created this animated product video for BookSync, our goal was to create a short yet informative video that was simple, sleek, and straight to the point: “Developing your team can be as easy as starting a company book club.” We aimed for the copy and the voiceover to be simple, and we kept the design and animation minimalistic. Creative animated explainer videos like these are the perfect tool for social media marketing.
Headspace is a healthcare app specializing in meditation. They have created a very innovative product demo video to promote their app. You’ll find many cute, cartoonish characters in this video that immediately catch the viewers’ attention. They illustrate what the voiceover is saying throughout the video, emphasizing the positive effect of the Headspace meditation app playfully and showcasing the creative freedom that comes with animated media.
Tornado Alert is a tornado detection device that monitors the weather and warns when a storm is coming. It’s an important security device that prevents the user from being surprised by severe weather. Through this animated product video, the viewer understands how storm detection works and how the product can help keep them and their families safe. Animated product videos are perfect for serious topics like this. They help tell a story and illustrate dangerous situations in a way that is still not too scary to watch.
We won a Gold and Silver Addy for this animated explainer video for BBBS of Greater Pittsburgh. This social media commercial premiered during Big Brothers Big Sisters’ most notable event of the year and then ran on Facebook and Instagram.
It’s the story of a “Little” describing her time with her mentor, “Big.” She wrote the poem, and then we recorded her reading it and developed the visuals from scratch.
In this vibrant and playful video, Google is leveraging motion graphics animation to show the many features of their smartphones in a fun and dynamic way. One of the strengths of this video lies in the fact that it can be understood and enjoyed with the sound off. It delivers its point through text and doesn’t rely on voiceover. This means viewers can watch the video on the go, whereas many cell phone users watch videos in silent mode.
Patagonia is known for its strong focus on sustainable, functional fashion, and this animated product video about The Better Sweater illustrates that wonderfully. The video is all music and subtitles, no voiceover, and efficiently tells the story about all the different environmental benefits Patagonia is achieving with the Better Sweater.
Using subtitles instead of voiceover makes it easy to understand the product video even if you watch it without audio. This is often a great choice for videos made for social media, where many viewers watch the video content on mute.
An animated product video is a great way to help viewers make sense of abstract or complex products and concepts. This US launch video from Spotify is the perfect example. This product video takes Spotify’s non-physical audio service with very little to do with visuals and turns it into an attention-grabbing product video, introducing Spotify in an inspiring way. Illustrations are an effective vehicle for bridging the gap between the abstract and the physical and allow you to do so in a branded and entertaining way. This video also showcases the immense difference a well-chosen music track can have in your video marketing.
You know the classic sales challenge, “sell me this pen”? Well, here’s a way to sell a pen that beats most pitches! When the writing utensil company LAMY was launching a new pen, they wanted not only to explain what they sold but for the video to embody the attitude of their new product range. They opted for a 3D animation to bring life to this rather mundane object and charge it with a level of personality that we usually don’t associate with pens.
Animated product videos are helpful for a wide variety of marketing purposes. They can make great ads, help you brand your processes, and reduce friction in the buyer process. Animated product videos are also easy to update when needed and represent an agile and flexible way to implement video in your marketing.
At Covalent, we specialize in innovative video production. We create videos that are not only informative, but that make your brand stand out from the competition. Get in touch to learn how we can help bring your ideas to life with video.