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Motion Graphics vs Animation

Difference between Motion Graphics and Animation

Video-based websites such as YouTube have become an integral part of content strategy and the prevalence of smartphones means that video marketing will continue being a preference for industry professionals across all sectors. According to Forbes, users are 64% more likely to buy products online after watching a video. The global marketing industry has therefore profited immensely from an unrelenting usage of motion graphics and animation. 

Understanding the difference between motion graphics and animation can help businesses determine how to utilize each tool as part of an impactful marketing strategy. 

Motion graphics vs. Animation: How To Tell The Difference

So how does one determine what kind of video they are viewing at a glance? 

What is Motion Graphics

Motion graphics is a category of animation where complex information such as data, concepts, or procedures can all be brought to life for easy visualization. It may include text callouts, color blocking, link work, moving shapes, and bubbles, or a combination of all of the above. These modes of relaying information became popular as marketers discovered that video content doubles organic search results as opposed to simply using words. Not to mention, you can lose your audience quickly when a message or concept is difficult to digest, motion graphics help to alleviate this problem. 

Some areas where motion graphics are most popular includes:

What Is Animation

Simply put, animations make objects and images move. The principle of modern animation dates back as far as the 1800s with the use of sequential images; people were drawn to the concept immediately. It soon became a powerful tool for communication, and it wasn’t long before the marketing world would use video production and animation as their holy grail. 

When we are thinking about motion graphics vs. animation, think of animation as an overarching form of storytelling. Animation concepts include cartoon series, and movies are now sometimes based entirely on animated characters. Animated movies are among the highest-grossing outcomes in Hollywood. Frozen 2 is the highest-grossing animated movie of all time earning 1.32 billion dollars shortly after its release. As you can imagine, motion graphics is growing because of the potential and the interest. Within animations, motion graphics can be regarded as tools to supplement the overall impact and message, especially when it comes to business video production marketing opportunities. 

In movies, motion graphics appear in the rolling credits, and in animated advertisements, they may appear as pop-up texts or in the form of moving data like graphs, lines, and charts. Today, the same opening credits, animation, and motion graphics techniques are used as tools within business video production content. The marketing world is dedicated to making an unavoidable impact, and nowadays it cannot be done without animation. 

Motion Graphics vs. Animation: When To Use Each Technique

How does a business owner or a client determine if they require animation or motion graphics for their business? This depends on two factors:

(a) What is the message? 

(b) Who is this message for? 

If a business wants to convey a message to their staff and stakeholders about let’s say, sales progress, a visually captivating presentation would require the help of motion graphics. The presentation would deliver complicated numerical and theoretical concepts in simple and visual ways so that staff from different departments could understand the content. However, if the same business is trying to deliver a message of societal impact through their work, or deliver a corporate and social responsibility message to reach a broader audience, an animation video would be better suited. 


In 2021, video advertising is set to be a $22 billion industry. Facebook, YouTube, and Instagram are today’s top platforms for businesses to market their products and they do so relying solely on motion graphics, and by default they use animation. 

Motion graphics and animation are here to stay and are one of the best ways to tell a complex story in a meaningful way. 

Bottle Rocket Media specializes in video production and motion graphics services. Connect with our team to create a brand story that is entirely your own and makes an impact!

Video Production Storytelling

Animated Videos for Business

The creative edge of animated videos

Videos are only effective when properly executed. Any business or individual could have a fantastic story to tell, but if they don’t have an engaging way to tell it, the results could be lackluster. Case in point: A study published by Microsoft found that the average consumer’s online attention span is eight seconds. You read that correctly: Eight. Seconds. With so much to say and so little time to hook an audience, marketers are turning to animation to bring their most abstract ideas to life. And it’s working.

Spotlight on Animated Videos for Business

What are animated videos?

Sometimes referred to as “motion graphics” or “motion design,” animated videos look cartoon-ish, and they’re perfect for capturing ideas that are tricky to articulate with live footage. Animation is the abstract thinker’s paradise, and it works for almost any genre of video. We’ve seen animated videos on websites, social media, HR training videos, explainer videos—the list goes on. Dropbox uses animation to visualize its product’s file sharing capabilities, a concept that could be hard to wrap your head around without some outside-the-box thinking (pun intended). Even Pinterest used animation in one of its original explainer videos.

Why are animated videos effective?

Besides being attention grabbing, animated videos are effective because they appeal to everyone, they’re easy to understand, and they’re super versatile. Between the unique characters one can create and the unlimited variety of bold color schemes, animation is intriguing, and it fills a gap regular live-action videos simply can’t. It’s imaginative, quirky, and viewers can’t help but stick around to see what happens next.

Why are animated videos worth it?

The point of video is to tell a story that resonates with a target audience and compels them to ask for more information and take action. Animated videos give marketers unlimited creativity, and that means no idea is too wild or too “out there”. Plus, you don’t have to deal with scouting locations or finding actors, which can help cut down on costs.

Our work with and the Make Every Vote Matter video


When we were asked us to explain the electoral college via video, we knew animation was the way to go. Not only is the subject matter not cut out for live footage, we also needed to keep the audience’s attention for the duration of the video if we wanted to get the point across. That’s a tall order given our eight-second attention spans. We were able to create a short, animated social studies lesson that was informative, educational, and evergreen. Check it out and see if you learn something new.

If you’re totally sold on animated videos—because let’s be real, you should be—we should talk. We are big fans of using motion design to tell a better story, and we would love the opportunity to work with you on your next video project.

So are you ready to get started?

Bottle Rocket Media specializes in video production and motion graphics services. Connect with our team to create a brand story that is entirely your own and makes an impact!