Written By: Tom Ogg, Co-Owner – Travel Professional NEWS
Cartoons and comic strips are probably the most engaging kind of content that there is. We have used cartoons for years with incredible success. And, while developing a cartoon or comic strip is relatively easy, giving birth to winners that go viral is a little more challenging. We will take a look at how to create effective cartoons and comic strips in this article and also provide some comic strips we have used in the past as examples.
The most important element to consider when planning a cartoon or comic strip marketing campaign is to define your specific target market. Travel is one market that lends itself perfectly for using cartoons and comic strips to share your value proposition in a very engaging way. Social media users are particularly attracted by comic strips that promise humor, wit and a visually engaging experience. Whatever your travel niche, you can easily create some cartoons and / or comic strips that will share not only your creativity, but your in-depth knowledge of your niche.
Cartoons and Comic strips can take difficult, abstract and challenging concepts and reduce them down to something that is easy and enjoyable to understand. Reducing an idea to both a visual and textual cartoon or comic strip makes the reader want to find the wit, humor and joke while they absorb the information being shared. They are a great way to reach a broad readership. Best of all, when folks are reading his or her newsfeed on social media, cartoons and comic strips easily break through all the clutter of videos, photos, graphics and other content that is competing for attention.
So How Do I Create a Cartoon or Comic Strip?
Creating a cartoon or comic strip is actually quite easy. Creating a successful marketing campaign requires that you do some due diligence before you create your content. Here are the key elements.
Targeted Market: The very first element of a successful campaign is making sure that the content is focused on a specific targeted market. Pushing a great surfing travel comic strip to senior citizens makes absolutely no sense. Neither would pushing a comic strip that would be of interest to seniors to surfers. You must know who you are creating the content for and define the specific market that you are focused on.
Cartoon or Comic Strip Objective: Now that you have identified your specific audience what is it that you want to convey to them? The cartoon or comic strip should have a well thought out and precise message that you would want to send. As an example, many of the comic strips included with this article were created for the express purpose a giving travel professionals a very real value proposition that was conveyed to consumers. While funny, each comic strip leaves the consumer with little doubt that using a travel professional is the very best way to go. To make the campaign even more successful, each cartoon was shared by hundreds of travel professionals in their social media posts.
Your Storyboard: Now that you know who your market is and what you want them to do, it is time to start work on the content. The very best way to accomplish this with a minimal loss of time and effort is to design a story board. If you are going to create a 6-panel comic strip, create the verbiage for each individual panel and for each character. This will give your cartoonist the information needed for character development and laying out the comic strip. Also, use notes to define how you would like each panel to look. This will help the cartoonist to develop exactly what you are looking for.
Test Your Storyboard: Create a group of people that you collaborate with and have them critique your storyboard with the intention of fine tuning it for maximum impact. You never know what another person will come up with to make the comic strip go from funny to hilarious. They will also let you know if the content is not strong enough to move ahead.
Creating Your Cartoon or Comic Strip
You basically have two choices to create your content. You can hire someone to do it for you or you can use one of the free websites that allow you to create your own with little or no experience whatsoever. However, if you are using cartoons or comic strips as a serious marketing vehicle, I would strongly suggest finding a good cartoonist and sticking with him or her. We have used our cartoonist for years and he knows exactly what we want, which removes the “getting to know you” stage of a relationship. Here is how to find the cartoonist that you can work with.
fiverr.com: We have successfully used this site for years to find creative talent and even though we have used Ricky hundreds of times, we still go through Fiverr to communicate with him. You can log on to Fiverr and review all of the cartoonist by just searching “Cartoonist” or artists that specialize in creating comic strips by searching “Comic Strips”. You will be provided with a ton of people that do each and a link to their Fiverr page that shows examples of pass jobs they have performed. Most of the artists are off-shore and therefore quite inexpensive. I highly recommend Fiverr as a resource for this topic.
UpWork.com: While UpWork is best known for its robust technology experts, it does offer well over 1,000 cartoonists.
AnythingCartoon,com: This is a website focused totally on connecting people with cartoonists all over the world. While I prefer Fiverr because of the way it is set up, this site certainly has potential.
If you search for “hire a cartoonist” you will be presented with dozens of sites that specialize in connecting cartoonists with those seeking their services. And, if you are predisposed to creating your own simply search “cartoon creation websites” and you will find sites such as toonytool.com, pixton.com, powtoon.com, pencil2D.com and lots more. Have fun!