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Getting Your Work Noticed

Marketing/Selling Yourself

Marketing/Selling yourself successfully, means:
1. Blowing your own trumpet, (but not being over confident or arrogant).
2. Letting people know who you are and what you do.
3. Reminding them constantly without being annoying.
4. Making sure the right people see your work.
5. Presenting your work in a professional way.
6. Compiling your own mailing list.
7. Being prepared to go that extra mile.

“Is Self-promotion really necessary?”
I’m a firm believer in marketing and self-promotion…
But it will require discipline, organisation and a financial
commitment. Having said that, it will also be worth every minute,
every ounce of energy and every cent/penny/euro etc. you spend on it.
Sounds pretty serious stuff? Right! But it is a fact of life for a freelancer,
and more so now than ever before that self-promotion is vital. With so many good cartoonists around competing for markets it’s a crucial part of your strategy, but it can also be a lot of fun!

Self-promotion on a limited budget.
No one has an unlimited funds, but the smaller your budget the
smarter your decisions have to be. You want to keep costs down but
you also don’t want your promotional package to look cheap. Good presentation doesn’t have to mean expensive full colour extravaganzas.
Well presented line art will look great. With present day technology, a promotion produced on a high quality photocopier or computer/scanner/printer will look good and be easier on your bank balance. Also try to get into as many Free Contact directories relevant to your skills as possible.

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Check in all your contact details on-line at
Or e-mail your stuff to: [email protected]
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The Battle Plan.
Whether you have a large or limited budget any self-promotion requires a battle plan. So do your homework first. Study your mailing list and decide the sequence of events –
1. What you’ll be sending.
2. To whom.
3. And when.
4. Next, decide on the variety and frequency of your mailing programme.
5. Then sit down and work out the costs and tailor your plan accordingly.

Many cartoonists and illustrators budget a certain percentage of their income, 5% to 10% for example, directly for marketing and self-promotion. Talk to other professionals and get advice from your accountant on how much you should or can afford to spend. You will almost certainly be able to offset the costs against your annual tax bill. Start small, and modify your plan as you get feedback, rather than blow your whole budget on one make or break promo.

The Priorities
What comes first when planning your self-promotional campaign? Your brochure or leaflet will generate business, which will then generate correspondence. So design your leaflet or brochure first, then your stationery.
To save time and expense design generically. This way a number of different pieces can be printed up simultaneously and economically using the same elements.

You need to have a clear timetable for a successful self-promotion, so here’s a basic recipe.
1. Send out your brochure or leaflet as an introduction. This mini portfolio displays approximately one to four examples of your work, shows off your style and provides general background information. It should cover a lot of ground and be particularly compelling to provoke a response.
2. When you get a positive response prepare a submission for that client. If the reaction is negative. Make a note and file accordingly.
3. Follow up your brochure/leaflet with a promo piece on a regular basis, either monthly, quarterly or as your plan dictates and your budget allows.
This can just be simple low cost postcards in black and white which can do
the job perfectly. Whatever you send remember that the bottom line is
good design and quality reproduction.

Don’t expect an immediate response to your self-promotion. You’ll feel gratified when it happens, but even if it doesn’t, keep your programme going. Either way you win, as well as looking to pick up new commissions your aim is to let the markets know you’re out there and not let them forget about you.
Bill Asprey


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