Sep 19, 2018
Everyone loves animation. It’s easy to brand, charming to watch, and the sky’s the limit in terms of the story you can tell. But, great animation comes with a couple of ‘gotchas.’ First, like any good creative, animation takes time to produce. From designing characters and storyboards to finessing each keyframe, the best animated work is an investment. And second, most high-end animation is static; once it’s rendered out, that’s your deliverable. It can’t change to match the season or the weather, or to reflect updates to your product or service offering. You’ve got a really cool short film in the can that represents just one commitment to one particular story at a single given point in your brand’s lifecycle.
But what if that’s not what your brand needs? Maybe you need your social channels to explode with timely or newsworthy content with next to no notice. Or maybe you need to personalize content to specific customers or followers.
Here are some options for having your animated cake, and eating it too:
All your users need is a working laptop and a semi-modern browser, and beautiful animation can be made that’s fully responsive, driven by your dynamic data, or even driven by your users. While developing good web animation with these extra superpowers can be a significant investment, a little forethought can land you with an attention-grabbing, shareable, evergreen experience. Stay tuned for a deep dive on some of the tools available in this area soon!
Conventional animation, on demand
A bit over a year ago, the amazing and talented folks at Cub Studio in the UK launched a game-changing service called Moshare. Built on a foundation of conventional animation tools like After Effects, Moshare leverages some really neat behind-the-scenes magic to provide clients with custom, branded, high-value animation that’s Twitter-ready in minutes instead of days. Moshare was marketed to the pro sports set to begin with, allowing social media managers to generate play-by-play content from custom templates through a simple web interface. With some know-how and a strong idea, even our conventional tools can be stretched to fit unconventional needs.
The middle ground
For situations where strong animation is needed across multiple deliverables, you don’t need to reinvent the wheel each time or limit your art direction to what’s possible in-browser. Early in 2018, Adobe added JSON support to After Effects, creating a solid, first-party workflow for creating data-driven animation. Do your quarterly reports need some pizzazz? Or, does your forward-thinking campaign need to be easily refreshed for changing seasons or rotating collections of products? Well now it’s possible to plan for all those possibilities by linking variables in a simple text file to properties in the animation such as color, typography, or image/footage selection. Simply update the text file and hit Render, and you’ve got a fresh deliverable without any extra headache.
Ask us how we can push your content dollar farther and still invent something amazing!