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Branimation: The Role of Animation in Branding

Corey Jones

Creative Director, Forum One

In my previous post on Motion for Good, I explored how animation works with motion graphics to create a powerful digital experience. In this latest post, I dive into the relationship between animation and branding — what we like to call “branimation” — and explain how the two are deeply interlinked when it comes to creating memorable online experiences. 

The brand strategy team here at Forum One focuses on helping the social sector strengthen and grow their brands. There are many things that go into making a great brand, but today I want to focus on the role of animation and motion in branding. To be a great brand in 2020 and beyond, you must consider the entire ecosystem in which your brand lives. Modern brands live across a number of verticals such as online/web, social media, and video. 

Branimation: melding two important components

Brands rely on creating an emotional connection. By bringing the brand to life through animation, sound and movement, making this emotional connection is much easier and more effective. 

With the rise of motion and animation in the digital space, it is crucial for today’s brands to think of branding and animation as inseparable pieces. Branimation allows organizations to project their identities by creating motion and thus enriching the digital brand experience. 

How can branimation strengthen your social sector mission? By 2022, a predicted 82% of all internet traffic will be the consumption of video content. As the motion design industry continues to rise, companies like Google, Apple and IBM are in a major hiring push to gain the best motion designers. Why? Because brands today are living, breathing entities that exist within animated social feeds, videos, and countless digital displays. 

While the social sector may sometimes be behind the wave of commercial trends, branimation allows nonprofits to explore creative ways to keep their audiences engaged, excited, and active. By bringing real movement and life to an important mission, the experience becomes immersive, three-dimensional, and modern.

Creating a branimation library

Whether you have an existing brand identity or are looking to create a new one, now is the time to build a branimation library. Referred to more broadly as a motion library, it is essentially a collection of animated assets unique to an organization’s visual brand system.  

Motion libraries include:
Logo reveals: these are valuable for developing video intros/outros to show how your logo has been created or evolved and can be effective in creating buzz publicly on social media. Here are a few commercial examples as well as ones we created for the Amanda Foundation and the Peterson Institute for International Economics:

PIIE logo animation from Forum One on Vimeo.

  • Animated graphics packages: these are mostly used in video graphics packages to bring together all of the animated pieces used in production. This includes logo reveals, animated transitions, type animation, screen transitions, and lower thirds.

  • Motion style guides:  This allows designers, animators, and engineers to be more collaborative to create more meaningful digital products. A great example of how this is applied is in how Google integrated this in their material design guidelines.

To get a better sense of what makes up such a collection, here are a number of good motion library examples that we’ve collected.

Taking the next step

If you are looking to take your brand to the next level by integration animation, let’s talk about how branimation can support it. A great first step may be to explore the creation of an animated explainer video, or creating a collection of assets you already have but haven’t made the most of just yet. For further social sector inspiration, check out our post on the power of animation.

Written By

Corey Jones

Creative Director, Forum One

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