When considering putting a video out there you have two main style options, broadly speaking. Both animation and live action are extremely varied fields of video production, and each have huge benefits. However, you must think carefully about which works for your business best. Here are a few pros and cons to help you decide which avenue will best serve your business. When considering putting a video out there you have two main style options, broadly speaking.
Both animation and live action are extremely varied fields of video production, and each have huge benefits. However, you must think carefully about which works for your business best. Here are a few pros and cons to help you decide which avenue will best serve your business.
One of the best things about animation is that it can achieve pretty much anything your imagination wants; no matter how fantastical and far-fetched your ideas, animation can make it happen. Of course, the boundaries of live action are a little tighter; with this option you are limited to what exists in the real world.
It might sound like animation is the obvious choice, based on this comparison, but this is not necessarily so. As great as animation is in terms of creative freedom, it also brings a sense of lightness and whimsy with it. This is fantastic if you are advertising a children’s product or design service, for example. But if you are advertising a law firm or a new car, then animation could well lack the seriousness and gravitas that you require for your brand.
Empathy is a great emotion to tap into when selling your wares. Audiences will connect with your brand brilliantly if they can imagine themselves buying your product or using your service. If this is what you want, then live action is absolutely the best option.
This option is extremely popular in the corporate sector as you can illustrate the effectiveness of your business through genuine interviews and testimonials from real people. This creates a human connection that cannot easily be replicated by animation.
Generally speaking the turn-around is much faster with the live option. Once you have an idea and a strategy in place, a live video can be organised, shot and edited within a week. Animation takes longer as there is much more design involved, which takes time and collaboration. The art of animation itself also takes more time. You can shoot a person walking across a room in 10 seconds; animating this will take hours. If you need speed, then live action is the road to go down.
Once live action is filmed, that’s pretty much it! If you want to alter anything down the line, you either need a really clever editor, or you have to go through the stress and expense of re-hiring actors, directors and crew, organising more shoot dates and re-securing locations. If you are confident in your business, you have an established style or have a finite idea for your video, then go for it. If not, then animation might be a better place to begin; you can alter the product at any time during the process, and you can do this as many times as are necessary to get it right!
Of course, a big part of your consideration is going to be cost. There is quite a large difference between the two styles. Live action, when done to a high standard, generally costs upwards of around $80,000. Animation, however, tends to cost much less; anywhere between $5,000 and $20,000. The large price bracket is due to the many branches of animated content to choose from; hand drawn (cel) and 3D videos sit at the top end of the animation price scale, whereas 2D, cut-out and stop motion are much thriftier options.
Why is live action so pricey? Well, simply, it is because there is more work involved. With live action you have to pay for concept, scripting and storyboarding before you even hit pre-production. Then there’s the costs of the set, location, wardrobe, talent and insurance… and that is before you even start shooting! Then there’s the director, the crew, editing, colouring…the list goes on! This is not to discourage live video, it is all absolutely worth it if the video gains the desired traction.
Animation production is just much smaller. All the talent, sets and locations are designed and created on paper or in a computer. No location costs and no crew or director to pay; much more financially manageable!
These are just a few guidelines. Although cost and speed do play a big role in the direction that you take, what is most important is that you choose a style of video that best shows off your brand.