Marketing With Computer Animation:
7 Reasons Why Your Company
Should Use It

by Mike Efford

Computer animation in marketing and advertising is in a class by itself, as a communications medium. While it shares some characteristics of other visual mediums such as video, it has unique attributes that no other marketing medium can equal.

Let's take a look at 7 reasons why your company should tap into the capabilities of this dynamic medium:

1. Quick visual summary:

Perhaps no other medium can match 3D animation to show a quick visual summary of even the most complex product idea. It's the visual equivalent of a "sound bite". Ideal for packing the most information into the shortest T.V. air time. Infomercials are a perfect example. What about industrial marketing? In boardroom presentations to high - ranking executives 3D animation is scoring major points. "Big - picture" generalists like CEOs often have little patience with a slow build - up of detail and data. They demand of anyone who communicates with them to get to the point quickly. Animation does exactly that.

2. Dynamic, time - based medium:

Like video and audio, animation communicates over a time line. It is a dynamic medium that uses motion to tell a story or make an impact in some way. This capacity clearly puts it ahead of print for demonstrating any product or system that either moves or evolves over time. For example, the parts of a complex truck suspension system rotate, shift and bend. Animation reveals these dynamics far better than print, which is static.

3.Easily grab attention:

A startling or unusual sequence, a sudden move, the shimmer of computer generated special effects; all of these animation techniques grab attention effectively. And that's the number one prerequisite to communicating with your market. Remember the classic advertising formula? A.I.D.A. Attention, Interest, Desire, Action.

4.Show what cannot be photographed:

This is truly where animation shines; there are no limits to what can be shown with computer animation! Hollywood is irrefutable evidence of this. 3D animation can fly through the solid steel of an automobile engine into the cylinders and pistons, do an extreme zoom from outer space down to an atomic nucleus in 3 seconds, anything…if you can imagine it, an animator can create it. (With enough budget, of course). For marketers this means you can demonstrate a product in ways that are way beyond what conventional photography can show.

5. Show what has not been built yet:

Related to the above, massive engineering and architectural projects are sold long before construction begins. Computer animation techniques such as ray - tracing and radiosity contribute photographic realism to "walkthrough" animations, so the audience is made to feel like they are looking at a film of the real thing. And with HD TV technology and huge flat panel displays, 3D animation can make the viewer feel like they are truly inside the space.

6. Position a company as technologically sophisticated:

3D animation can take an ordinary, mundane product and impart an intense "high - tech" look and feel to it. A Gillette razor becomes ultra - sleek like a jet plane in recent ads. Supporting graphic design elements as well as a touch of Hollywood special effects help make this work, but pace of movement, lighting and camera work contribute as well. No other medium elevates a product's perceived qualities in quite the way animation can.

7. Emphasize style and glamour:

The cosmetics and auto industries are some of the most experienced practitioners of marketing with computer animation. They use it to create an aura of mystery and excitement (in the case of auto makers) or glamour and chic (cosmetics). In the TV advertising of auto makers, 3D computer models take the place of actual cars much more often than the public knows. Combined with slick video editing and photography, animation can be used to enhance the appearance of any product. And when much of the appeal of a product is its appearance, animation adds major value to the broadcast marketing of the above industries.

Those are just a few of the many compelling reasons to use computer animation in your marketing. There's no other medium quite like it!

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