Transitioning Into Motion? Be Loud, Be Proud
Question: How do I transition into marketing my animation/motion services? Will I need to reach out to a new target audience, or are there ways I can let my current clients know I animate too?
I’ve worked on motion graphics projects with some of the illustrators I’ve represented over the past decade, but it wasn’t until last year that I began representing motion graphics artists. I’m still finding my way in this emerging market, but my experiences have already taught me some things: these simple but important steps can boost your confidence, and help smooth your transition into the animation/motion world.
© Chuck Gonzales
Don’t Keep Secrets!
First, make sure your website is freshly designed to accommodate your additional services – and that they’re categorized clearly and separately from your illustration portfolio. Be sure to list the programs you work with: After Effects, Cinema 4D, etc.
Let your regular clients know that you’re now offering motion graphics services. If they’re not the buyers for motion at their agency or company, ask them to put you in contact with the correct person. Make it clear whether you’re only marketing your own illustrations with your motion graphics services, or if you’re open to working with other illustrators (assuming you’re skilled enough). Reach out to producers along with designers, art directors and art buyers.
Research the many sites and blogs that showcase motion graphics and post some of your pieces to build further awareness and get feedback.
Seek companies that are the best fit for your particular skills and style, then reach out. Just like with your illustration portfolio, only send samples that are appropriate for your client’s market.
If feasible, create some short pieces that show your skills. Gear them specifically to the client you’re targeting, or the markets you typically work in. We created a one-minute piece highlighting all of our artists in motion, and it led to a few nice projects. You can view it here on my home page:
If you have any award-worthy pieces, there are many competitions open for submissions. Usually there are fees attached – actually, as far as I can see, there are always fees attached. But these competitions usually list the judges, so you can research them to see if they are good eyes to see your work. Even if your submission isn’t chosen, it will still be viewed.
Targeting a new audience is not just about having the skills necessary to impress. It’s about finding the right members of that audience, and speaking directly to them. Your current clients can help you spread the word among animation/motion clients – but nothing is as productive as proactively marketing to that audience. So don’t be shy!
Michael Thibeault is the founder Art Rep NYC, an agency representing the very best in illustration and motion graphics talent, both independently and also provide full illustration/motion graphics packages. Some clients: The New York Times, Williams Sonoma, WNET / Thirteen, Simon & Schuster, The Wall Street Journal, Proctor and Gamble, New York Magazine, Nickelodeon, Harper Collins, Penguin, Scholastic, Mattel, MAC cosmetics, Nylon Magazine and more. Art Rep NYC
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3. Dialogues Podcast: Effective Methods for Strong Client Relationships