Road trips: They’re adventurous, fun, and push us to explore. But would you buy a car for a single road trip — a fantastic two weeks out west — only to scrap it by the roadside? You probably agree that the usefulness of a car is so much more than a single trip. It’s your means to get to work, to run your errands, to visit your family and friends, or grab a good beer. The more you use the car, the more you get out of the dollars you invested in it.
Marketers Often Face a “Scrap the New Car” Challenge
Very specific requests from retailers or the need for diverse visual assets when launching a new product forces marketers to react vs. affording them the ability to plan well ahead. While it’s a great solution for the initial need, the challenge is when that product changes — whether it’s a small variation in a label or redesign of a full room scene. It often warrants needing new photography or getting new video again. While there are specific cases as to when to choose photography or CGI, there are many investment advantages for a brand’s budget to opt for the latter.
The REAL Difference Between Depreciation and Investment
Because we tend to toss around the word “investment” for things that really aren’t, let’s first take a step back. The dictionary defines depreciation as a reduction in the value of an asset with the passage of time. This can be due to limitations of the asset or due to style or trend updates in the marketplace, and ultimately that asset is rendered useless.
Whereas, an investment is defined as a thing that is worth buying because it may be profitable or useful in the future.
CGI: An Investment in “Living” Assets
Now, let’s apply this same mentality to CGI. Once you create a CGI scene (analogy: your new car), the more you can utilize it for a variety of angles and crops (analogy: road trips, errands, etc.).
Meaning: You get more for your money, freeing up more budget to spend in other smart areas with room to spare for future budget planning. (Your boss would be so proud.)
CGI-rendered room sets in particular have longevity as they essentially live forever as digital assets. The cost of materials and labor alone to photograph a room scene can be prohibitive, so brand managers seek smart alternatives. Creating a room set in CGI can be extremely efficient if you want to make modifications or product swaps in the future. Cabinets, sinks, light fixtures, flooring, can be updated without having to expensively reconstruct the entire room again.
Additionally, if you need imagery for a product that comes in multiple colors or finishes — or needs a new color or finish, engineering files of the product are used to create the product once digitally, then a talented CGI team can apply the necessary color change-outs.
CGI: Longevity to Weather Future Trends
We’re big fans of (ok, obsessed with) Fixer Upper, but with over 30 years of experience as a multimedia creative studio, we know that it’s just a matter of time before the shiplap phase shifts to another fun style. Worried about those marketing assets? Don’t be. We can take your existing photorealistic CGI farmhouse scene — shiplap and all — and rework the outdated features without needing to rebuild and re-shoot an entire room scene.
So, consider your CGI visual assets as a “new car investment” without the stress of driving your dad’s jalopy one day. You’re so much smarter than that, after all.