15 Tips to Start & Grow an Animation Video Company

MattBusiness, Filmmaking, Marketing, Video Production4 Comments

We’ve all seen them. Those witty animated videos that last about one minute, usually promoting a product or service. In fact, you’ve probably seen so many that you haven’t put much thought into their logistics.

Video marketing is now an everyday part of our “internet lives”.

Whether you were forced to watch one as a pop-up advertisement or as a recommended post on Facebook, animated videos are viral. Don’t worry, it’s not the plague. It just means that animated videos are super successful at what they set out to do — increase sales.

But why?

What makes animated videos so profitable and why are they an essential part of a business’ marketing campaign?

Today, you’re going to get a multitude of answers to that question which will give you a greater understanding of the big picture (and hopefully that “Aha!” moment).

You’ll see a variety of animated video examples within this post and guess what? You’re even going to learn how to start your own animation video company.

So, prepare to be enlightened.

Mobile Users

Over 50% of users access the internet via a mobile device instead of using their desktop PC.

Have you ever tried to read an entire article on your phone? (Maybe right now, yikes.)

Text is becoming redundant as our attention spans get shorter. No one enjoys scrolling down a 3-inch wide smartphone screen just to read. Videos are effective at conveying longer messages on a small screen and allow the viewer to just relax.

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Email Marketing

Emails that are sent with a video attachment are proven to have greater success. The exact figures are of debate, but an image with an attractive little arrow is a powerful tool for driving traffic to your landing page.

How?

Rather than using YouTube, you can host the video on your own website.  Videos in email increase click-through rates and the amount of sharing/forwarding.

SEO (Search Engine Optimisation)

Love it or hate it — your website’s SEO is greatly affected by video content.

Google has been tinkering with its SEO algorithms and, in an attempt to counteract poorly written, keyword-rich text, it now rewards websites with longer dwell times.

Meaning, the more time visitors spend on your website, the higher it will rank in Google.

So instead of stuffing your text with keywords, including a video on your homepage will improve your SEO by guaranteeing people stay longer!

Connection

On average, a visitor spends only 15 seconds on a website before moving on if nothing captures their attention. Video enables you to connect with your potential customers by instantly and passively engaging them.

By resonating with the viewer on all levels (visual, audio, and emotional), you’ve already stolen their heart.

In this Green Grid Systems video for tree root protection, it utilises background music, pleasing visuals, and an emotional script to captivate the viewer.

But how?

By now you may be thinking you’ve found the Holy Grail of converting traffic to your website and increasing your search engine ranking in the process.

But let’s not get ahead of ourselves! When planning your own video, there are many slip-ups that can be easily made and end up doing more harm than good.

Calm down. Here’s some solid advice that will save you from repeating the mistakes others have:

Identification

While your website visitors might only stay 15 seconds (if they don’t see something they like), they will only watch your video for the same length of time if you don’t connect with them.

This means your opening 10 seconds need to make the viewer scream “That’s me! That’s my problem!”

Whether you ask them a question or pinpoint an issue in their lives, they need to relate on a deeper level so that they’re compelled to watch the entire video.

Another great way to resonate with your prospect is by storytelling. When you use characters in your video that act out a story, it unconsciously relates to people’s minds better.

For example, in this cartoon based 2D video for the Energizer app, the man driving symbolises who the ideal user for this app would be.

Set Goals

What is your video meant to achieve?

Be realistic and place yourself in the viewer’s shoes.

Rather than giving them the big sell, why not concentrate on getting them to contact you with a positive call to action at the end?

People are far better salesmen than computers. Make it feel personable.

It’s also important to remember what message you want to convey from start to finish.

It can be tempting to have an ‘all singing and dancing’ video produced, but don’t let this smother your intention. Clever graphics should enhance the selling proposition, not steal the spotlight.

In this Nations Equipment Finance animated video, they convey trust by not only showing animation, but by using real people in sections of the video.

In their call to action, they simply offer to help and ask you to give them a call today.

Length

There is a huge temptation to include every bit of information in your video, but this can have an adverse effect. People are incredibly busy, and very few have 5 minutes to spare.

Research shows that after 90 seconds, viewer retention drops off unless the content is highly compelling.

My advice? Keep it short and sweet.

The Script

Hiring an experienced scriptwriter is a must. But don’t panic – video scriptwriters don’t charge the same rates as movie scriptwriters.

For a 225-word, 90-second video script, you can expect to pay around $80.

This fee includes a couple of rewrites so you can capture the right tone.

But who?

So, who benefits from having an animated video? The answer is as broad as it is long. Ultimately, it depends on what it is being used for.

Next, you will see different ways animated videos can be implemented in a business and examples of how each looks.

Online Platforms

Maybe you have a freelancing website, social media platform, or even an online financial services app. Explainer videos are a great way to engage visitors and show them how easy it is to use your product or service.

For example, this video for Sharpfin explains how to use their wealth management software.

Organisations

Charities, government bodies, and other organisations may make a more potent impression using animation.

The overuse of graphic real-life scenarios can lead to what is known as “compassion fatigue”.

Graphic explainer videos can also be used to promote ethical and eco-friendly working practices in industries such as automotive, food and beverage, medical, and manufacturing.

Animation makes learning difficult or technical processes easy and appealing.

This motion graphics animation explains the crisis of Fukushima radiation so that people can fully understand the impact.

Online Businesses

Online businesses can promote their company with a graphical video in a variety of ways. It can easily be shared on social media and email.

Having a snappy animation is like having the perfect salesmen on your website 24 hours a day. Businesses may also want to use animation for their video sales letter.

Video sales letters (or VSLs, for short) tend to be longer in duration, so it’s essential to keep the viewer absorbed.

Using kinetic typography, like in this FIFA Ultimate Team Millionaire Trading Center video sales letter, the audience is kept engaged even though it is merely text on a screen.

Bottom line? If you have a message meant to reach as many people as possible, then a video, especially a graphic based one, is hard to beat.

Diving In

Of course, there’s the other side of an animation video company that may interest you. Setting up your own business!

I set up X Factor Presentations for explainer video after I realised that I didn’t need to possess every skill of producing a graphic video from start to finish. And through careful selection, I was able to create a skilled independent team of specialists in their own field.

With there being more than one type of graphic video, I discovered that creative individuals have their own strengths in different areas.

X Factor Presentations has worked hard and fast to establish a strong working relationship with a few select people, all of whom I consider to be the best at what they do. It took many months and a lot of trial and error, but the people who now help me include:

Animators

I discovered there are a good number of animators on freelancing platforms. Through samples of their work and smaller initial projects, you should be able to find a skilled animator to add to your team too. They all have a unique style, so it’s important to find one that resonates with you or your client’s brand.

In this animation for LUX-TSI, the animator used whiteboard style animation.

On the other hand, the animator for this video used a more futuristic, modern style animation which sets a completely different mood.

Scriptwriters

Even though all three elements of an animated video are equally important, without the right message, the video will lose its effectiveness.

The script is the backbone of your video.

Normally, you give the scriptwriter a comprehensive brief on what’s being promoted and what the principal message is.

Once the script has been completed, then the animation can be finished and both can be passed to a voice talent.

Voice-Over Artists

Good voice talent is worth its weight in gold.

You can find a wide selection on Fiverr.com, but be wary when hiring one. They often produce high-quality work, but as the saying goes, you only get one chance to make a lasting first impression!

A professional voice talent will have a studio and a clear understanding of the elements in a script. In truth, they are actors and these are skills that have been learned over time. My advice is not to cut corners when choosing one.

The Boss

In the case of X Factor Presentations, I am the boss. My role is to promote the company and its services. No matter how great a team you’ve gathered around, if people don’t know you exist, it won’t make a difference.

Make sure you create a website and provide a first-class portfolio containing examples of your work.

Conclusion

I’ve always aspired to have a service which could help other businesses in some way. So, when I started X Factor Presentations, I channelled my fascination with visuals into helping businesses present their stories in the best light.

The beginning isn’t easy, so if you decide to set up your own business, then be prepared to invest heavily in yourself.

In the formative months, expect to provide your work at a loss-leading price in return for a glowing testimonial. You can use this on your website and LinkedIn page to gain credibility.

Having a LinkedIn profile is absolutely crucial.

Why?

It’s one of the best ways to market yourself to fellow professionals and business that could truly benefit from your services.

The expression I like to use is ‘make a noise’. Write articles, post regularly on Facebook, and include samples of your work wherever you can.

There are many people out there who follow the Field of Dreams philosophy of “build it and they will come”. But take it from me, they won’t. You have to go out there and find the business – it’s a full-time job.

That is why you can’t run the business single-handedly and need to create a team of self-employed individuals who will provide you with what you need when you need it, but whom you don’t have to pay a monthly salary to.


rohanRohan Kale is the founder of X Factor Presentations and has been quoted on various well-known news channels, including NBC, ABC, CBS and FOX news. You can connect with him direct at rohankale@xfactorpresentations.com  or via LinkedIn at https://de.linkedin.com/in/rohankale1985

Most common types of videos with examples:

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4 Comments on “15 Tips to Start & Grow an Animation Video Company”

  1. Awesome guide to animation companies here. It’s been my dream for a while. Have a couple of questions:

    Do you have to be a great animator yourself in order to have an animation company? I’m a pretty good animator (but not world class!), was thinking of maybe hiring other people?

    What sort of stage do you need to get when you start hiring staff? What sort of revenue are we talking?

    1. Hey Mate,

      Thanks that you like it. to answer your questions:
      1) Knowing the basics is always helpful and you need a good team working for you. As written in the article you have to be a a good manager.
      2) Pricing really depends on what kind of videos you decide. There are video that cost $300 and then there are videos that cost in excess of $20000 so you really need to find that perfect balance. This video depends on the length and the type of animation used and if the video is template based or custom made.

      If you have more questions then let me know 🙂

      Rohan

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