Videos have become a necessity in marketing plans all over the globe. The tricky part is deciding which type of video works best to convey your branded message. How do you decide on how to present the visual elements of your message? Which is best, live action, or motion graphic videos? Both formats can be equally effective, but the best choice will generally depend on the way you want to reach out to your audience and the overall goal of your video.

Motion graphics are animated graphic design elements that are becoming trendy in today’s marketing world. Motion graphic videos use a combination of animated images, text, illustrations, data, and audio to present information in an entertaining way. These types of videos are most commonly being used to effortlessly explain concepts, ideas and processes in a short amount of time. If your product or service is continually evolving, it can be easier to make changes to an animated video instead of getting back on set for a live action video shoot. It’s also very easy to establish or reinforce your brand with motion graphic videos. You’re able to create a video with a visual style that leverages your brand standards and style guides, including colours, fonts, and the overall look and feel.

Live action video refers to traditional cinematography and videography that does not use animation. An excellent live action video can tell an authentic story with ease. Live action would be best for you if it is imperative to show a product demonstration, a real work environment, or a particular individual in your video. Real human expression or a friendly face can make it easier for your audience to relate to a topic. The testimonial is an excellent video marketing tool, and it gives the viewer a chance to see that other people like your product or service. Interviews and testimonials are a lot easier to digest in a live action format. If your staff members don’t feel comfortable in front of a camera, or if you’re worried about staff turnaround, then an animated video may be a better route for you.

Every situation is unique. Certain brands or products can be more suitable for a motion graphic video. The ACEC QBS brand is a great example of this. We used animated graphics in their video to help the viewer get a better understanding of their complex process. If your goal is to highlight a relatable aspect of your business, a live action video might be the way to go. Our SilverBirch Hotels & Resorts Residence Inn video really allows viewers to put themselves in the main character’s shoes.

Below is a list of advantages for each style that might help you decide on your next video:

Advantages of Motion Graphics Videos:

  1. Reinforces your brand colours and assets;
  2. Has a longer shelf life if you think the people on the videos might not be with you in the future;
  3. Fun way to tell a general overview of your company;
  4. If you have a product that can’t be easily filmed or is still in prototype mode;
  5. Videos where you don’t want to have people (because staff change or people are camera shy).

Advantages of Live Action Videos:

  1. Customer Testimonials are great because prospective customers may want to actually see and hear with others have to say about your company’s services and products;
  2. Demonstrations / Educational videos can be great if you need to showcase a process (say cooking, or some kind of step by step process);
  3. Event Promotion Highlight Videos are great especially if you want to capture an event and re-purpose the content for social media;
  4. Employee Recruitment is similar to Customer Testimonials where people applying to your firm may want to see what your company culture is like. This is particularly important in industries that are competing with a limited talent pool.