You may not have heard the term motion graphics, but you have almost certainly seen them in action if you just spend some time surfing the Internet. Simply defined, motion graphics are data represented in an animated format, and they can be much more appealing than reading the same information in text format.
The best motion graphics on the Internet are those that have accurate displays of the intended data coupled with tasteful and appealing animation, which makes it much easier to assimilate that data, and at the same time appreciate the visual aspect of the presentation. More and more content creators are coming to the opinion that motion graphics are one of the best ways of expressing complex and important ideas because most people prefer the visual format to that of text.
Why Use Motion Graphics?
Because Internet users are well known to have a short attention span, it becomes critical to relate a message as quickly as possible. When that information consists of facts, figures, and statistics, readers might be easily bored. However, a visual representation of that same information makes these complex facts and figures more digestible to the reader.
There is no debate about the effectiveness of video on the Internet as compared to textual representation, and this is precisely the concept which motion graphics seeks to capitalize on. Because a great deal of information can be condensed into a brief animated display, there is much less risk of users clicking away from your video/graphics content while reading textual content, or even for sitting through a long video for that matter.
Another huge appeal of motion graphics is in how easy they are to prepare, at least when compared to say, a full commercial which advertises a product. The two primary methods by which motion graphics are constructed are the ‘starting from scratch’ approach, and by beginning with a flat graphic which can then be animated to suit the purpose.
The second method is, of course, the far easier and less expensive option, since it has a ready-made starting point, as opposed to the ‘scratch’ method, which must be entirely constructed. Starting from scratch, motion graphics usually begin as a storyboard which provides a kind of guideline for what needs to be built. It also allows for tweaking an original concept at various points in the storyboard to achieve better results, rather than having to come up with entirely new content.
The advantage of starting with a flat graphic, especially if it was created in vector format, is that it can re-sized with no degradation in visual quality, which allows for greater animation control. Content creators using motion graphics have a wide variety of tools available to them for the purpose today, including Apple Motion and Adobe After Effects, which can impart 3-D appeal to motion graphics, and convey the appealing illusion of motion.
The Future of Motion Graphics
The nature of motion graphics makes it seem likely that they will be around for a very long time indeed. They are already extremely popular, and because of what they bring to the table regarding concise and appealing content, the likelihood is that they will gain even more popularity in the near future.
It is well-known that video content is by far the most popular on the Internet because it plays to the mindset of the typical Internet user, which is to acquire information quickly without having to read through a lot of text in the process. The value of video marketing is evident in the fact that the average web user engages in nearly 20 hours of video watching each month, and the majority of shoppers check out product videos before making a purchase. It is also known that shoppers who review product videos are almost twice as likely to buy the product being viewed.
While motion graphics are not to be confused with video content, they may have even greater appeal eventually, because they have the potential to occupy the middle ground between dry text and overproduced long-running videos. Motion graphics get their messages across very quickly and directly, in a manner even faster and more digestible than traditional video production would.
On top of all this, they make no demands of the viewer, except possibly to share the content being watched. That just might make motion graphics the absolute ideal for content marketing, and it may very well prove to be a difficult concept to beat, even in the highly competitive landscape of digital marketing.
Because it conveys its message quickly and in a manner accessible to assimilate, motion graphics has the kind of appeal which can start the word-of-mouth process in motion, and generate its own Internet buzz. That’s the kind of reach that marketing gurus dream about, and it doesn’t even have to cost an arm and a leg to produce. All this being so, it seems likely that motion graphics will continue to impress and sometimes dazzle Internet users for the foreseeable future, and probably well beyond that.