How To Pair Motion Graphics With Music Or Sound Effects To Create Unforgettable Videos

If you were to pinpoint one reason why video is 1200% more shareable than static mediums like text and images, it would be this: viewers get the information they want and/or need in a visually appealing way without having to make a major time commitment.

Instead of reading a blog post or skimming over a social media caption, viewers can watch a few seconds or minutes of video and take away everything they need to know about your brand, product, etc. However, they will only do this if the content is good.

Vibrant colors, engaging visuals, great background music — quality is key when it comes to producing videos for social media, TV, and other digital channels.

Not only do these things hook the viewer initially, but it’s also more likely that the viewer will remain invested in the viewing experience and then retain 95% of the message afterward. (Of course, this is exactly the type of outcome you want.)

One of the best ways to produce videos that deliver these results and more is to use motion graphics, music, and/or sound effects (SFX) during content creation.

Before sharing some best practices for creating videos with these different elements, let’s take a look at how brands have done this in the past.

Slack’s “How to brainstorm in a channel” (2021)

Every unforgettable video has a clear message, and that’s definitely the case with this video ad. In 15 seconds, the video creators position Slack as a communication resource that saves teams time.

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Instead of brainstorming in a long meeting, users can simply start a new channel — it’s as simple as that.

The main takeaway from this example is that you don’t have to pack multiple value propositions into one video to create unforgettable content. In fact, it’s actually better that you focus on just one.

That way, you (like Slack) can then use motion graphics, animation, music, and SFX to share a core message with your audience in a more visually engaging way.

Ethical Coffee Chain’s “Ethical Coffee Chain – Know Your Bean.” (2011)

This classic explainer video from Ethical Coffee Chain (ECC) uses motion graphics and animation to reveal how their product goes from the farm to your front door.

In the span of three minutes and 17 seconds, the viewer learns 1) what goes on behind-the-scenes of coffee production 2) what ECC’s values are, and 3) how ECC is different from its competitors.

Without voice narration, background music, and SFX, however, the video wouldn’t be nearly as engaging or informative as it is now.

HubSpot’s “INBOUND is coming. Register NOW!” (2021)

The team at HubSpot created this 32-second video to promote one of their upcoming events, INBOUND 2021, and encourage sign-ups with a call-to-action in the video’s description.

Motion graphics, audio clips, music, and SFX are all strategically used in this video to showcase how much the event has grown since starting in 2013.

And by using social media engagement visuals and corresponding SFX, the video creators are sending a very clear message to viewers: This event generates a lot of mass appeal and anticipation, and you (their audience) don’t want to miss out.

With these examples fresh on your mind, let’s now shift the focus to your own content creation. There are a couple key things you need to do anytime you’re pairing motion graphics with music and/or SFX:

1. Start With The Visuals

Music and SFX are crucial components in any video, but before you can integrate audio into your video, you have to do two things:

  1. Finalize the video concept and script, and
  2. Decide how the video will come together on-screen.

Whether you’re making short- or long-form videos, it’s important to make pre-production documents like a storyboard, moodboard, and shot list. This is when you decide which motion graphics that you want to add, giving your team the time to create or find those assets.

Maybe you want to keep it simple and just use motion graphics to introduce your brand logo. Or maybe — like the Ethical Coffee Chain example — your entire video is comprised of motion graphics and animation.

Once you know how the video will come together shot-by-shot, you can then start searching for the best music and/or SFX to complement what’s happening on-screen.

2. Find & License Music or SFX

The best motion graphics and visuals won’t be enough to convince a viewer to keep watching a video with awkward periods of silence.

If you don’t account for the listening experience, your otherwise engaging video could come across to the audience as lackluster, amateurish, and even low-quality. As a result, engagement would likely take a dip and bounce rates would be higher.

This is all to say that the audio side of video production is extremely important.

However, finding and licensing music and SFX for videos hasn’t always been easy. And that’s because music licensing is often expensive and time-consuming.

To include even five seconds of a copyrighted song in your video, you could negotiate with multiple copyright owners for several weeks and pay hundreds or thousands of dollars in licensing fees.

Fortunately, a solution to this long-standing problem is to license music and SFX from a royalty free stock media company. That way, you have unlimited access to an entire audio library and can avoid licensing negotiations altogether.

Once you find the right music and SFX for your video, you can simply license the media and add it to your video editing timeline.

When it comes to great visuals and great audio, it’s not enough to just have one or the other. You have to invest in both sides of video production in order to walk away from post-production with videos that hook and hold your viewers’ attention.

By accounting for your audience’s viewing and listening experience, you can ensure that the motion graphics, music, and SFX in your videos work together cohesively on-screen. As a direct result, you can boost engagement on social media and any other distribution platforms.

Mackenzie is a copywriter at Soundstripe, a stock music company that provides filmmakers, creators and advertisers with royalty free music such as sports background music and folk music (and many more genres).