Author: Bob Sep 15, 2021 5 min read
Usually, one of the first questions the business owners planning to create an animated video ask is how much does video production cost. The second question they ask us is why is animation so expensive. The philosophical answer to both of the questions is that animation is neither expensive nor cheap until it is compared to the price of something similar, so let’s find out how much does animation cost actually and what factors affect the final animation budget.
There are a lot of factors affecting the final animation production costs. The location of аn animation studio is one of them since, in most cases, the average rates of animation services are affected by the local market. The studio’s servicing level, the skills and competencies of the artists, the experience in creating animation for well-known brands, and the recognizable style of the studio also affect their pricing policy. What’s more, these aren’t the only factors that influence the final animation cost.
While the agency’s specifics essentially drive video production costs, there are also many additional but no less important factors you have to keep in mind when budgeting for an animated explainer video.
Here they are:
When deciding on your video style, you may often choose between two options – 2D and 3D. Is 3D animation cheaper than 2D? The right answer is it depends. In most cases, 3D animation turns out to be more expensive compared to 2D, since 3D videos involve extensive animation of every character and the usage of different technology. But as an exception to this rule, our in-house artists say that sometimes high-end and very detailed 2D animation may cost the same price as 3D.
There are various styles and techniques used in 2D animation. Some are relatively simple to use while opting for more sophisticated ones will increase the cost. For example, an explanatory video created in a whiteboard style is more affordable than a full-fledged 2D cartoon, (for example, like the one we created for Audientes).
The character creation process is time-consuming and involves several creative and technical steps to complete. Additionally, the more different characters you want in your video, the more time it takes for artists to conceptualize and animate each one.
The longer the video, the more time the artists have to spend creating it. The cost of video production per minute can also be different and directly dependent on the factors mentioned above — the agency’s location, animation type, style, and technique.
Adding voice-over and sound effects is also a laborious task. That’s why some business owners decide to create animation without sound. This is a popular approach for promo videos since it is more important to focus on visual means to showcase the product and its benefits.
However, you can’t make “silent” explainer videos. This is the case when it is better to invest more in clear explanations but create less expensive graphics.
The more details the artist has to think through and create, the more time it takes — the higher cost per project if charged hourly. However, if a studio has a similar project in their portfolio, you can ask them to make a project cost estimate by the reference and budget for its development more accurately.
Concept, script, and marketing message development are at the heart of any video production project. Surely, it takes time and effort. You can save a little on this stage by creating or outlining the script on your own. Ideally, you should have a concept, and a message clearly outlined to speed up video creation.
Sometimes, this stage can take up to 30% of the project development time. What’s more, you can’t skip it – the task of this phase is to get your animation to perfection.
Below is an approximate cost breakdown for a 60-second video depending on the animation type and complexity.
As you can see, the approximate cost of animation is style and complexity-dependent. The final cost of the project is always individual and depends on the technology (2D or 3D), the animation style you follow, and the complexity of the creative ideas you would like to realize.
The price for creating animated videos varies greatly, with many factors affecting the final cost. Still, the investments into a top-notch marketing video that is perfectly tailored to the business goal are likely to be paid off. Consider integrating animations in your marketing strategy – they are more potent than you may think.