The past few years have seen an increased use of animated cartoon by sponsors at Franchise Update Media conferences. Whether aimed at franchisees, franchisees, or marketers, these presentations are not only a departure from "standard" promotional and marketing videos, but judging by audience reaction, they also seem to draw more eyeballs (as well as a few smiles) - despite clearly being marketing pieces pitched to sales and marketing pros. Toonimo, a company that produces animated cartoons, presents their top five reasons to consider incorporating moving pictures into your brand's online marketing mix. Below are some edited excerpts.
Cartoon animations can be a powerful marketing tool for online marketers. Whether marketers choose an animated character that chimes in to sell office products on television or a 'Tony the Tiger' type that actually becomes integral to the brand, animations provide powerful imagery and associations. Animations have broad appeal and, when used cleverly, can help build brand awareness, improve brand perception, and boost conversions and sales. ...
Animations, like many other multimedia tools, replace boring, heavy text with powerful images and emotional audio. It's obvious - even reading this short summary - that audiences are more inclined to engage with multimedia than to read. However unlike other multimedia, animations are unique in their ability to quickly distill and impart the essence of a message. They enable us to deliver core marketing messages using efficient multimedia, but without the fear of being considered overly blunt - thanks to the friendly, animated mouthpiece. Animations are hyper-succinct. They can distill even the most complicated idea to its essence. Clever animation artists can communicate the core principles within seconds. To put it simply, animation can make the complex simple.
Most of us have grown up watching cartoons. Our early and formative days are filled with animations and cartoons that arouse positive, carefree associations from our childhood. In fact, the commercial success of animations continue to compound these light and playful images and associations. When marketers use animation today, they can sidestep the heaviness of life, the cumbersome aspects of many decisions, and simply tap into their audiences' more basic, innocent understanding. Just ask Tony the Tiger, who summed up all the complications of choosing a breakfast cereal for the kids: "They're Grrreat!"
Like other types of video, animations make content interesting. It perks up our senses and keep us more engaged in what we are doing. (It's easier to listen to ads than read ads, isn't it?) In the field of multimedia advertising, animations are a powerful medium. Animations enable marketers to achieve the same engagement as other video formats, but with a uniquely straightforward marketing voice. Caped in the clothes of cutesy, engaging animated characters, animations can say and do things that spokespeople cannot. While few people would sit and watch advertisements (except during the Superbowl), many people will watch (not just sit through) promotional messages that are delivered by cartoons.
Moreover, like a fun ad or a goofy YouTube clip, animated marketing messages can be fun enough to share. While we don't often share white papers or datasheets with friends, exciting, engaging animated movies are indeed "shareable." Surveys show that up to 65 percent of online audiences share animated videos with their friends after watching them. So if you can be both entertaining and informative, then you may hit on something that has ever-increasing ROI.
Ohhh, the childhood associations... the happiness, humor, energy, and fun of losing yourself in a cartoon! Now, as adults, we can rediscover those feelings. How much more accessible is it to watch an animation than swallow documents crammed with statistics, charts, technical considerations? While animations won't necessarily replace the critical thinking of a decision-maker, they have the impact of lowering their guard, of serving as icebreakers that can warm up audiences with humor.
Simple animations are one of the most cost-effective forms of communication for a marketer. And the costs associated with creating animations are dropping, so getting started is relatively barrier-free. Just consider the costs of a traditional videos, such as set design, location shoots, production costs, and paying models or spokespersons.
These cost considerations, combined with animation's flexibility, make this an appealing tool for marketers. Beyond pure economics, animations are flexible enough to be used in a variety of situations. Whether to deliver a marketing message or for use in a training video or walkthrough, animations tell the story quickly in a very clear and simple manner. From home page welcomes to navigation directions to onsite support, custom animations can help web visitors understand, engage, and most important, act.
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