Industry POV

Why do we lack animated ads despite their popularity

13 Oct 2017

MUMBAI: Do you recollect the much-loved Zoozoos, the evergreen Amul girl or the crazy alien dance when they find Cadbury Chocolate on their planet? Most of us might because these are iconic animated characters that create a higher brand recall in the consumer’s mind.

Eye-catchy visuals in animated ads not only help push brand advertising but also have a 30 per cent higher engagement rate making it an essential piece for the marketing heads in order to drive more consumer engagement and conversation.

The claim to the first animated advertisement is a much-debated subject but one of the oldest recorded animated ads was named ‘Matches an Appeal’ that utilised stop-motion to illustrate a matchstick man spelling out the company’s name. Although animation in advertising dates back to as early as 1940, the phenomenon hit India only in late 90s. Brands such as Amul, Vodafone, Appy Fizz, Mortein and Red Bull, etc, are the brands that successfully used animation in ads.

Dentsu One national creative director Titus Upputuru points out that, while some great animation ads have been created in the past, there is a lack of innovation in animation for television advertising. Though, we are more advanced today, the same is not reflected in the advertising industry through animations.

Explaining that India has a long heritage of drawing and painting, Publicis India MD and chief creative officer for South Asia Bobby Pawar draws attention to technology and newer well equipped animation studios that have created animations for Hollywood blockbuster Avatar, in turn aiding the evolution of the art of animation in India.

Time still remains a major constraint while creating animated ads. Titus adds, “We don’t see a lot of animated ads because it is time consuming to create each frame and see progression of movement or any action in the frame."

According to a recent FICCI KPMG report on the Indian media and entertainment industry, Indian animation and VFX industry grew at 16.4 per cent in 2016 and is projected to expand at a CAGR of 17.2 per cent over 2017–21 to reach a size of Rs 131.7 billion, driven by a steady 9.5 per cent growth in animation and a 25 per cent growth in the VFX segment. Although the numbers look decent, we lag behind the West when it comes to the quality of animation and seamless VFX.

Bobby Pawar suggests that, “There is a serious dearth of talent for animation directors; people who can imagine characters, write about them and have fun with them.” While lack of talent, studio-set ups, animation artists, time, and the high cost of execution remain a challenge for the industry, brands are slowly inclined to experiment.

Indiantelevision.com takes you through some of most memorable and milestone moments (ads) in the Indian ad world.

Maggi noodles, as we know now, once had flavours like Fruitti fruitti (more like Toofi Frooti) and Toffi Toffi back in 1986. Although the ad was loved by the kids, the sweet flavours did not work for the brand and were soon discontinued. Maggi hasn’t gone the animated ads way after that and decided to get celebrities instead or showcase the ‘2-minute’ cooking.

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