Live action vs Animation?

If you’ve decided to have a video created for your business then the first major decision you’re going to have to make is are you going to opt for a live action shoot or go down the animation route?  It’s a big decision, and both mediums certainly have their own unique benefits, so hopefully this article will give you a helping hand hen making your choice.


Obviously, as an animation production company you’d think that we’re going to be a bit biased, and whilst it’s true that we love animation we’re not going to sit here and tell you that it’s the only option you should consider.  Live video is great and also hugely popular.  One thing video has that no one else can compete with is the human element, at the end of the day we’re all living beings and somewhere in our brains it’s hardwired to recognize and react to other human faces.  It’s a big draw, and the human eye will instantly pick out other faces instantly and then listen to what they say, for a while at least.  Obviously it’s down to the subject matter and the video maker to make what they say interesting and engaging otherwise that instant attention you’ve grabbed won’t last long.


Live action video is also great for showing a human side to your company.  You can get your company employees on screen so people can relate to the company on a more personal level.  In some cases they might be able to see the person they go on to speak to on the phone, or via email, and it makes them feel more involved with your company.  If you’ve got an impressive office space or business setting then it’s also a great medium for showing off what you’ve got to offer.  It can add that level of prestige that will give you a much needed image boost.


All this is great, however if you’ve looked into live video production then you’ll probably have come across its main drawback when compared to animation.  The cost.  Live action video is generally a lot more expansive to produce than animation for a similar duration of video, and this is because the set up costs for a professional video company can be fairly staggering.  A decent camera body on its own will cost thousands, and you can add a few thousand more for good lenses to accompany it.  And when you think most professional video production companies will have several camera kits, all complete with tripods, microphones, lighting equipment and various other accessories you can see how it’s an expensive business to be in.


Live action video also takes longer to produce.  You’ll have to arrange a shoot, which might take place over several days on multiple locations, and if you’re commissioning a professional production company then they’ll be providing more than one crewmember.  You’ll probably have a camera operator, sound operator and a director on set, who all need paying, and once the shoot has been completed then there will be an editor who will need to put it all together.  These costs have to be recovered somewhere, so you’ll probably find that most live action video packages will run into the thousands, rather than hundreds.


Animation is a different prospect.  True, it doesn’t have that human element that makes live action attractive, however what it does have is the ability to create anything your imagination can think of.  It’s a great medium for creating graphics and motion that appeals to the eye and makes it want to continue watching, and when combined with a professional voice over it can be a fantastically entertaining medium to work with.  It does require a bit of expertise, it’s not something most people can pick up and do so you’ll need to look around for a company with a good portfolio and track record with clients.


Animation is also a much more flexible medium.  It’s easier to adapt your product at the end to tweak it to how you want it, so you’ve got much more control over how the finished product looks.  If you get to the end of a live action video and decide you’d like to change it then unfortunately sometimes the only option is to go out and reshoot it, which can either be prohibitively expensive, or in some cases (such as if you’ve been filming a one off event) impossible.  With animation a video can change and evolve without too much of a headache.


Another reason animation can seem a more attractive proposal to live action is the price.  It’s typically much cheaper to have an animation produced than a live action shoot, so you can either reduce your marketing budget or get more for your money.  You can have multiple animated videos for the cost of one live action shoot, so you can create more content for your audience.


Both live action and animation have been shown to provide huge benefits for any business, both in terms of audience engagement, sales and SEO rankings.  In this day and age content is king, and the only guaranteed way to increase traffic to your website and your position on Google is to create great content that people will share and enjoy.  If you’ve got content people want to see then Google and other search engines will reward you in your search position.  You’ll also get social media love, with likes, tweets and shares coming your way if you put some great content out there.


Hopefully some of the points above will have stuck a chord with you and may have made your decision a bit easier.  There is no right and wrong answer, live action and animation both give you great benefits and you’ll get results with either medium.  Just make sure whatever option you choose you make sure you get good people on board who know what they’re doing to create your content.  If you’d like to talk to use about any of our packages then please get in touch today.