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How Animators Can Get Clients with LinkedIn Cold Messaging

ben marvazi 2020

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Do you recall your first day in college? New city, new home, new classmates, and all the possible newness in life. Everything just seemed strange, with no signs of familiar things lurking around.

You thought of going out there and making friends, but that was quite nerve-wracking, especially in an unfamiliar environment.

Cold messaging animation leads are a lot like that. You introduce your animation services to someone who hardly knows you and has never thought of your existence. It can be challenging when you hardly know anything about communication and prospecting.

In this article, we explain what a cold message is and share with you our eight best LinkedIn cold message tips for animators.

Animation Clients on LinkedIn and What is a Cold Message?

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A cold message introduces a service or a product to a lead without prior contact. The aim of cold messaging is not necessarily instant conversions, but building relationships that will eventually turn cold leads to warm and hot leads.

As an animator, you can send cold messages through various channels such as email, LinkedIn, Facebook, and reach thousands of animation leads. Take note that it can be hard to get a response in an initial attempt because your message is unsolicited.

But with a pitch that’s thoroughly researched and follows the right strategies, a cold message can help make an outstanding first impression to animation leads and eventually convert them into paying animation clients.

One of the most effective ways to send a cold message and get a response is by reaching out to animation leads on LinkedIn. LinkedIn’s audience targeting capabilities can help you easily find potential clients and increase awareness of your animation services.

Another reason to use LinkedIn to send cold messages is that its open rate is 166% higher than email.

It has a “casual chat” nature that makes it easier for animation leads to quickly read and reply to your messages rather than answering a formal email. This can lead to a more powerful and effective sales process.

Below are some LinkedIn cold message tips for animators.

1) Identify Your Target Audience

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Like any other business, targeting the right audience can help animators tailor their messages to focus on animation clients’ needs.

LinkedIn allows you to run a Boolean search by combining keywords with AND, NOT, and OR. For example, when you search for “chairman AND CEO”, LinkedIn will automatically show you results for people who are chairman and at the same time CEOs.

Similarly, you can do an OR search by typing “founder OR CEO”. LinkedIn will show you a list of names of people who are founders or CEOs.

You can also use LinkedIn’s advanced search filter to target even more specific LinkedIn groups and find animation leads similar to your existing animation clients.

In the search bar, type in a keyword or the title of a person you want to target. For example, you can type “sales manager” and click the “People” tab.

Further filter down the results by connections, locations, current company, or select the “All Filter” options to automatically broaden your search filters.

Apply all the possible search filters that make sense to you based on your ideal animation lead. And when you’re finished, you’ll get a narrowed-down list of animation leads.

With LinkedIn’s excellent targeting capabilities, you can filter by location, jobs, and skills to refine your search and target specific businesses and individuals. This ensures that you’ll be sending cold messages only to people who will likely value your animation services.

2) Personalize Your Message

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Now that you’ve identified your audience, it will be easy for you to personalize your message for the decision-makers in every company.

Research shows that 72% of consumers say they only engage with personalized messaging. The more specific and personalized your LinkedIn cold message is, the higher your chance will be of getting responses from animation leads. 

Start by personalizing the intro sentence of your LinkedIn cold message by using the name of the animation lead you would like to send a message to.

You can also do some research that will personalize your message by looking for similar hobbies or mutual connections.

Another way to personalize your LinkedIn cold message is to compliment your animation leads on their recent achievement. You can find out about this by going through the About section on their LinkedIn profile.

They’re putting it there for the world to see, so starting your message with it will surely keep the conversation going.

Addressing the pain points of your animation leads can also help in personalizing your cold message and increase your chance of getting a response. It requires maximum research and preparation that shows you’ve been paying attention to your animation leads’ business needs.

3) Find a Mutual Connection

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One of the great things about LinkedIn is that it keeps a strong network of explicit connections that can help you easily spot the right animation leads. The degree of connection, from 1st to 3rd, can affect your interaction with your animation lead.

1st-degree connections are people you’re directly connected to because you’ve both accepted each other’s invitation. You can easily interact and exchange messages.

2nd-degree connections are people connected to your first degree. They are typically your mutual connection.

3rd-degree connections are those people who are connected to your second degree.

Animators can build networks and send messages to animation leads by either sending or accepting invitations to connect. Fortunately, with LinkedIn Premium, you’ll be able to send a message to an animation lead even if you’re not in the same group or haven’t connected with them yet.

To connect with your 3rd-degree connections, you can ask your mutual friend to introduce you first to your animation leads. This way, you will instantly look credible since people tend to trust word-of-mouth recommendations from colleagues and friends more than companies. 

You can also directly send an animation lead a message by mentioning how you’re connected to the same person.

Hi [first name],

I just saw your profile and I’m impressed with your recent blog post about [blog post topic]. I noticed that we’re both connected to [mutual’s name] and have a lot in common so I thought it’d be nice to reach out and connect with you as well. 

Looking forward to hearing from you!

[Your name]

If you lack a common friend, opt for the larger picture and take advantage of LinkedIn Groups. It’s one of the great places on LinkedIn where professionals in the same industry or with similar interests can share insights, ask questions, and exchange messages. 

Hi [first name],

We’re both members of [LinkedIn group], and I noticed that you work in [industry name]. I’m also passionate about creating content for my clients in the [industry name]. I thought it would be a great idea to connect with you and share ideas about [industry name].

[Your name]

4) Communicate Your Unique Selling Proposition

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A unique selling proposition, or USP, differentiates you from other animators and defines your unique place in the animation industry. It tells a potential animation client the number one reason why they should use your animation services.

Hi [first name],

I’m [your name] of [name of your animation studio]. I launched an animation service that helps businesses like yours increase brand awareness and generate sales. If you’ve been wanting to make videos to grow your business, check out what we do at [link to website].

Want to know how to persuade, inform, and entertain your target audience? Let’s set a call and discuss how to help you get started.

[Your name]

The goal isn’t to force your animation services into them, because you’re not likely going to make a sale or close an animation deal by sending one cold message.

Your first goal is to build connections and understand your leads’ needs. Once you make them see your value, you’ll be able to generate leads, convert them into animation clients, and help them meet their business goals.

5) Keep It Short and Simple

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Unlike the lengthy and, sometimes boring, paragraphs from emails, LinkedIn messaging is best for cold messaging animation leads. It operates like an instant messaging app where messages can be read and answered on a mobile screen.

Make sure that your message is short and on point. Your goal is to get your animation leads to respond. Think of your cold message as an elevator pitch. You should write a good cold message subject line that can grab your lead’s attention in just a few words.

According to Litmus, having 14-15 characters on your subject line has a corresponding 15.2% open rate while 30 or more characters only have an 11.9% open rate. 

Most leads make decisions based on their emotions, so remember to make your opening more about building rapport and then sell later. 

Keep the body of your LinkedIn message under 100 words. Blair Decembrele, the in-house career expert at LinkedIn, said in an interview with Business Insider that LinkedIn messages with 100 words or less have a higher response rate than those with over 200 words.

Also, remember to avoid using business jargon when writing your LinkedIn cold messages. You might be familiar with these words but there’s a possibility that your animation lead might not understand what it means. Try substituting jargon words with everyday language as much as possible.

Time is valuable to animation clients so stop beating around the bush with wordy phrases. Be straight and clear with your purpose.

6) End With a Powerful Call-to-Action

a woman who wants to continue the convrersation

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While we’ve established to create a relationship first and let the selling follow later, you’d still want to make the conversation engaging.

But when you send a message to a stranger, it’s kind of difficult to do that, unless you give them a reason to reply. By using CTAs, you might just give them a good enough reason to do so. 

A call-to-action is a written directive intended to prompt an animation lead to perform a specific action. To make your CTA powerful, use brief but strong words that will speak directly to your potential animation client and encourage them to respond.

7) Send a Follow-Up Message

a woman checking-in with her client

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Sending LinkedIn cold messages doesn’t end after hitting the “send” button. You need to monitor these messages and see how they’re doing. Most of your animation leads are most likely busy.

It could either be that they already read your message but didn’t just have time to respond or they didn’t read it because you’re a stranger and they haven’t seen the importance of your message.

If you’re promoting a special offer on your animation services, a follow-up message can give an animation lead a reminder to go ahead with the offer. Here’s a template you can use when sending a follow-up message:

Hi [first name],

I know how busy you must be managing your team. I sent you a blog post on how our animated explainer videos could help grow your business. If you’d like to hear more details about this, I’d be happy to tell you everything you need to know and I could also give you a free quote. 

I look forward to your response.

[Your name]

8) Use CRM Tools

a woman taking on the burden of managing clients like a CRM tool

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You won’t be sending messages to only one animation lead on LinkedIn so using a good CRM tool can help you keep track of each cold message you send. It can help ease the burden of the animator’s administrative tasks and allow you to focus on making animated videos.

Coordinating with your animation team using CRM tools, especially in a remote work setup, will be so much easier because you‘ll have access to the same information at any time and anywhere. Also, it can be an avenue for better communication with your animation leads

Some of the best CRM tools for animators are Hubspot and Zoho. They provide a real-time view of your animation sales record and support online meetings and presentations.

How Animators Can Get Clients Through LinkedIn

Finding leads through LinkedIn cold messaging is an effective way of increasing leads and sales as a freelance animator and animation studio.

It’s always a great idea to target ideal animation leads who are interested in your animation services, especially when you both have mutual connections who can vouch for you.

After targeting the right animation lead, your next goal is to make a good impression, so make sure you have a unique selling proposition that will look valuable to them. Personalize your message as well to make them feel special.

Sharing a free cheat sheet, handbook, checklist, masterclass, or other lead magnet is also another way of getting noticed and receiving a response. It shows that you truly care about achieving your animation lead’s goal. While you’re at it, keep the conversation active since nobody wants to talk to a wall.

And if you still didn’t get that reply, sending a follow-up message won’t hurt because maybe your animation leads are just busy running their business and forgot to reply to you. 

Your success with LinkedIn cold messaging depends on the effort you put into it. With the help of these tips, more research, and a lot of effort, you stand a good chance of making a great impression and turning your cold leads into animation clients.

For more tips and information about animation and its business side, download a copy of our free marketing handbook and sign up for our awesome free masterclass.

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