Why Whiteboard Animation is Perfect for Marketing Financial ServicesClaude Harrington 01.14.2016
Peter Lynch managed Fidelity Investment’s Magellan Fund for 13 years. During this time—1977 to 1990—the fund averaged an annual return of over 29%. It grew from $18 million in assets to $14 billion, making it the best performing mutual fund in the world. In short: this guy Lynch, he was a pretty savvy investor. So what, you might wonder, does this have to do with whiteboard animation? Surprisingly, more than you’d expect…
In Lynch’s book, Beating the Street, he sums up several of his investing philosophies in a section called “Peter’s Principle.” On the list are 21 pearls of wisdom, ranging from straight-forward (“The best stock to buy may be the one you already own”) to metaphorical (“All else being equal, invest in the company with the fewest color photographs in the annual report”). But the tip that really caught our attention, and speaks to the power and potential of whiteboard animation was this:
“Never invest in any idea you can’t illustrate with a crayon.”
Lynch’s point is that as valuable as metrics like market cap or earnings per share may be, one must never forget that, ultimately, you are investing in someone that does something. Perhaps that doesn’t sound particularly elegant—investing in “someone that does something”—but in the spirit of Lynch’s folksy and straight-forward wisdom, that’s really what it comes down to:
- Do you trust that someone?
- Do you understand that something they plan to do, and see value in the proposition?
Answering those questions is no easy feat. Especially when the underlying product or service may sound complicated or seem ineffable (think: tech, pharma, etc.).
In fact, there’s almost a paradox at play. Because successful products are often those that are more sophisticated than their competitors, explaining that sophistication to a layperson becomes inherently more difficult.
That’s what makes whiteboard animation such a uniquely perfect tool for marketing financial products or services. Not only does it personify the simple-yet-thoughtful tenets that Peter Lynch preaches, but it does so in an accessible and entertaining way.
In a sense, whiteboard animation is the next evolution of a business prospectus: a best-foot-forward, conversation-starting piece of content that builds credibility and excitement. There are several reasons why this is the case, but let’s look at a few of the most compelling attributes:
Build Trust…Literally: Because of the style and conceit unique to whiteboard animation, viewers will literally see the video (and its message) drawn to life.
Demonstration of Process: The perfect antidote to any skeptic or Devil’s advocate is a detailed demonstration of process. Historically, explaining how something works might have a reputation for being dry. But with whiteboard animation, there’s no aspect of process that can’t be made entertaining and accessible.
Metaphors + Professionalism: In every day conversation we constantly rely on metaphors. In business materials, however, rarely are they to be found. That’s because, as words on a page, it can often be tough to relay the comparison with elegance. In a whiteboard environment, however, where action and movement drive the message, it’s much easier and more effective to use illustrative metaphors without sacrificing professionalism.
Adds Qualitative Features to Quantitive: Lastly, and perhaps most importantly, whiteboard animation excels at making ordinary visual aids dynamic. By adding depth and context to things like charts and graphs, just about any metric or data point can become a compelling and persuasive tool to demonstrate value.