Creating animated videos for social media

When it comes to creating animated videos for social media, do you feel like a bit of a self-taught rookie?

Written by Jack Last

Long gone are the days when a simple, hastily edited photograph would interest viewers. Social media is an industry that is changing rapidly. Yes, it’s a free advertising outlet that’s quick to use, but your brand isn’t the only one that wants to tap into these benefits.

Did you know that, on Instagram alone, 95 million photos and videos are shared every single day? Across the world, countless companies are vying for viewers’ attention. As a result, the game has gotten a lot more complicated.

In order for your brand to keep its social media pages above water, you’ll need to bring your creativity A-game. And that’s where animation comes in.

Why use animated videos for social media?

Every year - every month, even - it’s becoming more and more difficult for social media pages to catch users' attention. The size of the competition and the number of other players involved means that brands are constantly being forced to pivot, innovate and create.  

Que animated social media videos. Animated content gives brands a much-needed edge. With this stylish, creative and dynamic content type, branded videos are far more likely to get noticed. By working with a professional video animator, you can create animations that are specifically engineered to capture attention and deliver a message succinctly. Thanks to their creative talent and special media know-how, animators can deploy bright colours, image and sound working in harmony, a clear script, a fun-filled character and a strong on-brand aesthetic.

In short, animations ensure that your video stands out from the crowd. They catch the audience’s attention quickly and effortlessly. Then, the key message is delivered clearly and quickly, keeping the content engaging all the while.

Video formats to consider for social media videos

Over the last decade, the biggest names in social media have invited video content in.

This includes Instagram, Facebook, YouTube, LinkedIn, Tik Tok, Pinterest and Twitter. All of which are open for consideration in your video marketing strategy.

And, although that might feel a little overwhelming at first, this is actually a huge benefit. Once you’ve made the initial investment in an animated video, you can share it across all of your platforms. This gives the video a huge ROI, and allows you to boost the engagement metrics across all of your branded channels.

But, before you go ahead and re-share willy-nilly, remember that all of the different social media platforms have their own specific formats. And it’s critical that these are fully understood before you click ‘upload’.

How long should you make your animated social media video?

As you can see, there’s a huge variation in maximum video lengths across these platforms - everything from 60 seconds to 12 hours. The optimum length of content has always been a bone of contention, even amongst marketing pros. And there’s no one simple answer.

We suggest that, to ensure your animation achieves maximum engagement everywhere that it's posted, you tailor your video length to each platform. Although it might sound like a faff, by adjusting the animation length based on the platform it will be distributed across, you can ensure you’re hitting each platform’s recommendations for peak engagement.

For instance, according to Sprout Social, LinkedIn ads usually perform best when they’re around 15 seconds long. But, for Instagram, 26 seconds is the recommended length. And then obviously with YouTube, you’ve got the option to upload an animation that’s significantly longer.

When you work with an animation agency, they’ll be able to create multiple versions of your animation, tailored to best suit each platform.

Once the master video - with the design, concept, message and audio - is finalised. It can be made into multiple versions, with the required dimensions and formatting of each platform. This way, you can be certain that the video’s message is delivered with equal success through each channel.

Why work with an animation agency over using a self-create video tool?

Social media - particularly the rocketeering launch of TikTok - has opened up video content like never before. Now, users of any experience level, and a little (or no) design background can create videos for their brand’s social pages.

No doubt, this has been a fantastic step towards diversifying content. It has pushed brands across the world to up their game, and expand their creative horizons.

Working with a professional animation agency is, without a doubt, the best way to ensure your video really hits the high notes. But, this won’t be the best option for everyone. Animation has always been a notoriously tricky field, usually reserved for highly-skilled creatives.

However, there are now a number of self service subscription video creation tools available for you to take advantage of. The most popular tools on the market right now include Adobe, Vimeo, Animoto and Moovly.

Certainly, they do have their advantages. The best of these are quick and easy to use, highly cost-effective, and can create impressive results. But, they can also easily fall flat. So, it’s all about weighing up the budget that you’re willing to invest, with the importance of the project’s key deliverables.

For instance, if you’re just creating a quick animation to wish your audience a ‘Happy Christmas’, then a self service subscription video creation tool will probably do the job. After all, it doesn’t really matter how many people your video reaches, and your deliverables are simply to help create a positive brand impression. Plus, there are no immediate targets, and you can’t really expect the video to significantly increase your followers (as there’ll be a very limited number of users going online that day).

But, if you’re launching a new product (for example), then your best bet is to work with an animation agency. This campaign will have a lot of important deliverables - expanding your audience, boosting sales, enhancing customer loyalty and increasing conversion rate, amongst others - and there’s a lot riding on its success. You want to get a return on your investment into the product expansion, and maximise the number of purchases. To that aim, you need to ensure as many people see your new product as possible.

And, although working with an animation agency represents an extra cost, it’s very likely that this campaign will bring you a notable return on your investment.

Why work with an animation agency like OK Social?

All in all, while self service subscription video creation tools do have their advantages, it’s probably unwise to entrust them with the success of a pivotal marketing campaign.

Do you really want to put the success of your animation in the hands of a first-time company blogger, with zero design experience? If it’s promoting a new product launch, or responsible for upping your online metrics in key areas, probably not.

By working with an animation agency like OK Social, you can tap into the expertise of professionals - not just skilled animators and designers, but marketing pros who know exactly how to maximise your KPIs. Plus, you’ll have complete flexibility about the style, content, voice and length that you want to achieve.

At OK Social, our professional animation team has worked with some of the biggest names in the country. We’ve designed sleek, branded social media animations for Deliveroo, Taco Bell and Ford, to name a few.

We have extensive experience working with brands, to create completely bespoke content, which achieves impressive, measurable success in the precise fields that they require.

To find out more about our animation services, or the benefits that they can bring to your social media channels, don’t hesitate to get in touch.

Let's chat about your project
Contact us

I’m Jack, the Motion Director here at OK Social. I’ve been working in the world of motion design and animation for nearly 10 years. I had the pleasure of working with leading agencies and brands around the world, such as Samsung, Ford, Shell, Deliveroo, and Starbucks, to name a few.

From a young age, I’ve always been interested in animation, from making stop-motion films in my room as a kid to learning animation on my first computer. It started as a passion and still is to this day. Part of what I do now is more than just animation. I help craft the narratives of the stories we tell to ensure they make an impact to the audience and remain worthy of their attention.

So how do I do that? It starts with asking the right questions, leading to solving the right problems. First, diagnose what the problem is. Then, we can start to see if we can help. I believe that communication plays a key role in delivering a smooth and successful project. Looking into the future, I’m excited to expand my knowledge into creating more engaging stories that make a difference.