How much does a 60 seconds animated video cost today. Industry research.
When it comes to creating a video for any practical purpose (for a business, an event, to illustrate some facts, to get the audience acquainted with the product), people usually look for several variables. This list includes a country, how fast the studio can drop you a result, and… the price, of course.
In fact, our world crossed the line between local and global – and now you can barely see it. Why? It is no longer an issue if you need a video from a U.S. studio due to the fact that they have a unique approach to making those. It doesn’t matter if you are on the other end of the world now: you can request a professionally made animation video basically from any place.
In wormholes of the internet, you can find plenty of studios that are using their own visual languages, signs and symbols capable of bringing entirely new realms to any type of commercial video – from explainers to clips about upcoming events.
We are, too, interested in knowing how the market is different considering geographical location or a studio.
So… that is why we have decided to immerse deeper in this question and research it properly. In the end, a mass of data we received is right in front of you.
How did we conduct our experiment, so to say? It actually was a part of bigger research, similar to the concept of “a secret shopper”.
What you should know about the research?
- It involved more than 200 studios around the world (USA, Europe, Asia and other countries)
- We sent out a random video – to be precise, a typical explainer video that any animation or video production studio can make – and received 150 replies for this video from different studios;
- The study lasted 30 days.
What about the countries and regions? Here they go:
So, now we have nothing but to move the studios themselves – to see how long it takes to make a video and how much it will cost you. Are you ready?
Average stats per country
United Kingdom – one of the most expensive locations in terms of “price for an animated video“. That is hardly surprising considering that the UK has always been on top of prices when it comes to video production.
Most of the studios in our research happened to be located in London, however, there are few from Edinburgh, Surrey and small towns.
The range of prices: from 750$ to 13 400$. Between these numbers, you can request a video for 2 670, 4500 and 6000 $ – these are the most popular prices.
The length of production is another vital question and it is never the same. It depends on a variety of factors including the focus of a studio (what we mentioned before in this article), a team and general ability to work fast. Besides, a studio should “allow” itself to work at one speed or another.
In the United Kingdom studios, we included in our list a product cycle that lasts from 13 to 40 days. The average numbers are 20, 23 or 25.
The U.S. – the studios from the New World are beating up the rest of the world with their prices because no one would charge you 60 000$ for a single short video. That is true! We stumbled upon this studio that wanted for background music at the same price as for the entire video.
The range of prices: 2,800 to 85 000$. Between these numbers you can request a video for 5 000, 10 000, 15 000 and 33 000$ – these are the most popular prices.
The length of production in the U. S. is a bit different than in the United Kingdom – from 13 to 38 days. The average numbers are 23 and 35.
As you can see – and probably expected – animated companies in the U.S are quite expensive. It would be hard to name every reason, but the main ones are obvious: a very competitive market, clients that need high-scaled solutions and the scale of companies.
Europe – is completely in the middle of our research due to several factors, but mostly because of the prices.
In Europe, you can see quite a handful of companies that provide you with only animation services.
The range of prices: from 1000 to 12 500 $. Between these numbers, you can request a video for 2 000, 5 500, and 8000 $ – these are the most popular prices.
The length of production in Europe lasts from 15 to 50 days. The average numbers are 20 and 30.
Eastern Europe or SIC – here you can find plenty of studios that are concentrated entirely on animation. It is an extremely interesting thing, we will get back to it later.
The range of prices: 390 to 5500 $. Between these numbers you can request a video for 2500, 3500 and 4000$ – these are the most popular prices.
Besides, a production cycle in these countries is the shortest we know about – it is 8 days. However, there is only one studio that can offer such a thing.
The length of production ranges from 8 to 45 days. The average numbers are 20, 25 and 30 days per one video.
The studios in Eastern Europe are more directed towards animation. Meaning: here you can see many top-notch studios that concentrate only on animation. Unlike the U.S. and Europe where basically every studio has traditional video production at hand. The prices are higher than in Asia, however, the economy affects how much these studios can charge, even though their works are not conceded to American studios.
Asia – the cheapest region where you can request an average quality video. Lately, the studios from India and Malaysia become better and the level of their services increases over time.
The range of prices: 200 to 7600$. Between these numbers you can request a video for 2000, 3200 and 4000$ – these are the most popular prices.
A production cycle in these countries can be incredibly short – 5 days only! It is hard to say whether it says something about the capacity, a team or enthusiasm.
The length of production ranges from 5 to 32 days. The average numbers are 11, 17 and 25 days per one video.
How do the studios position themselves?
It is extremely interesting to see how studios offer their services and how they position themselves. It is not always a matter of prices, but merely how they reflect values and principles.
For example, one of the cheapest and yet high-quality studios from the USA we were able to reach claimed they have “startup-friendly pricing with an easy production process” and can make simple videos for social media to full-scale marketing solutions for every stage in the customer life cycle.
Here is an interesting note. Some studios don’t mention their capacity. Well, from one point of view it is entirely their business – in both meanings of this word. However, it is not that good. Any client should know what kind of focus is appropriate for the studio.
We tend to look at this as a good sign. Why? Many studios are not inclined to make a video out of your request entirely. What does it even mean? Well, some studios would simply refuse your script. They might look at the idea and try to make it on their terms entirely.
If you have in mind nothing but a video, and you want to receive a final result without asking anything in particular, you can rely on some studio just having seen their videos. However, if you need your requirements for a video to be entirely satisfied, we recommend looking for a line like this:
Some animation or video production studios usually say that just a video is not enough – so they implement their marketing vision and use storytelling – both visual and verbal – as the main tool.
Great many award-winning animation video production companies that specialise in the production of animated explainer videos, promotional videos and corporate videos would offer some exceptional services. For example:
How do the studios answer?
The way communication is held becomes one of the most important points in collaboration between the client and the studio. Why?
How a studio’s representative talks to a client will affect their relationships later. It includes how quickly a studio answers, what is the tone, is they talk somehow creatively, interesting, but not pushing clients away.
Let’s take a look at some interesting answers from the studio, learn what the cases could be when requesting a video, and we’ll go deeper into the pros and cons.
The one thing you should know about the communication process with the animation studios is this: there is no particular pattern. You can’t expect that every studio will be following some universal policy. Each studio is entirely different from another. Sometimes weirdly different.
For example one of the studios has been rather funny:
Quite often the studios don’t want to share the pricing with you. They call it confidentiality, but the topics are extremely important for the clients.
Don’t be surprised if you see the answer such as this one:
If you come to the studio with your own script, some of them are not always very supportive and might propose you a quite different deal:
Another interesting case we had was with this one studio from the U.K. They sent us prices and a catalog of good works immediately after the request, but did not immerse in our request at all. The price was about $ 14k, which is a lot even for the UK. Here’s what they said:
Let’s take a look at other points:
- Many studios will ask you to connect in real-time – on Zoom or GoogleMeet to talk about details. It is maybe the most similar fact that unites many studios from different countries.
- Most of the studios did not respond immediately. They take some time to answer, usually, it takes a day or two. Sometimes – but extremely rarely – you can get a direct answer from a real person.
- Some studios send offers where a separate point is a music. For some reason, music in the background will cost extremely high – up to 2000 $. Well… that’s overpricing, for sure. Considering the fact that such a video will cost only 2000 $ as a whole.
- Almost all the animation studios are ready to bargain. If you disagree with their offer (expensive), they bargain and knockdown to 50% of the cost. A note: always look for a studio with stable prices that don’t consider the option of a bargain.
- Some studios tend to refuse requests, because “this is too small an order for them”.
- In the US we also stumbled upon a studio that sent prices and a catalogue of works but did not even look into our request.
Pros and cons in communication patterns
Obviously, animation studios act differently when it comes to communicating with clients. We decided to take a look at the pros and cons of some approaches that we happened to notice.
- when the client receives the answer from several people from the agency or animation studio at once;
- if an agency immediately invited a client to a call. Yes, it might be important in urgent projects. However, if a client has just requested a video, a call is something of stepping up into the client’s personal space;
- too long letters, even if they are personalized;
- if the first letter that the studio sent to the client doesn’t contain a clear price – it is a con. The price is a wide range from 5k to 20k on the market, so any client would like to understand at least what to expect from the company’s level of price and quality.
- some studios allow themselves to refuse the length of your advertising animated video. If such a thing doesn’t possess rather a recommendatory nature at a late stage of negotiations, it is a con then.
As you see, we take as cons here every situation when a studio for some reason deprives a client of freedom that is inherent to anyone who wants to make some idea a reality.
Let’s move to the prons:
- A simple, understandable answer that reflects the client’s request. Contains a price and everything that can affect it, examples of other work the first test question is a test for the adequacy of the client, and then the normal answer;
- If a studio is sending a client offer with a separate landing page for a request instead of a regular pdf file.
- A variety of options if you are looking for a particular outcome and can describe it.
Facts & numbers
The United States is the most expensive country when it comes to making animated videos. The production cycle is not different here, and its length is the same as everywhere – 10 to days.
India, despite the stereotypes, still remains the most affordable country to get an animated video. What is most curious about Indian production companies is that the gap from others is strangely not large at all. Here you can still find videos for $ 500 (!) and yet the quality is good – the average level has pulled up to the international standards.
Eastern Europe is more animated-oriented. It means that most of the studios there are entirely focused on animation. Unlike the U.S. where companies usually mix a few types of video production. There are many indie studios in Kyiv and Moscow, two cities that represent animated studios from the whole region. Such companies usually consist of creative professionals and it is hard to overlook that in their works or even how the landing pages were designed.
The average time around the world is 25 working days or 4-5 weeks for a 60-sec video.
Animation as a genre is far more capacious than most people give it credit for. The field of play is so wide that it is difficult to transcend the genre, but it is possible to break it. Besides, the number of artists and animators are always changing which affects how the studio changes. In the end, we have a wider market for those who need to use animation for their business goals. Or, to be honest, for any type of goal.
If you are looking for animation for your project, we recommend doing several things first:
- To make sure you know the limits of your budget. Without actually knowing how much you can allow yourself to spend, you can come across to expensive a company;
- What is the purpose of your video? Knowing it will help you to be clear and welcome or reject anything that a studio will recommend to you.
- Prepare to wait for your video for about a month, but the negotiation process would be much longer.
- Remember, that lower prices don’t necessarily mean bad quality.
Our research is done, and you can see clear stats on every country, the tendencies, and the narrowness of the studios. However, we have one more question for you: would you like to see an even more detailed guide for each country?
Don’t forget to leave your impressions in the comments;)
One more thing to keep in mind: you can always contact us to get information about proper animation video for your project. We are ready to hold consultations on any topic you are interested in for free.
Source: Indiefolio website