Sometimes, we can’t avoid complaining about our jobs, especially if we landed one that was not our choice in the first place. We feel drained, burned out and hopeless as we go on because we need to pay our bills anyway. What if I’m telling you right now that there are actually ways to earn money online with some fun and artistic business ideas? In particular, I have tips that are perfect for digital comic artists stuck in offices. One of these ideas might just be your knight in shining armor.
What Are Webcomics?
First of all, let’s be clear what webcomics are. Webcomics are also known as internet comics or online comics. All comic strips posted on a website are called webcomics. Like a typical comic strip in print, webcomics follow a certain subject, style or genre. Types of webcomics are comic blogs, avant-garde, graphic novels and the usual comic strips or books we’re familiar with. They are usually made by drawing on a paper first, scanning it and adding colors with software tools.
The Webcomic Business
I have to be honest right now – most webcomics are free. But with your lovable characters, you can branch out to other means so you can finally earn money. You just have to capture everyone’s hearts first. The following are ways to generate money with your webcomics:
You can learn how to use Google AdSense so you can choose ads that fit your webcomic pages. These Google app utilizes the so-called Google search algorithm. Your budget, expenses and views depend on how you set the pay-per-click amount.
Although not really reliable, you can try putting a donation button on your webcomic site. Some fans would love to donate money for the sake of keeping themselves entertained with your comics. These fans know that an artist needs “fuel” to get going.
Sending Fan Copies
Some webcomic artists shared that several fans have asked for their original artworks. Let the fans have it and earn money!
Appearance in Comic Conventions
Once your webcomic becomes a hit, it is best to appear in comic conventions. It doesn’t matter if it is a small one. Don’t expect too much if you’re still starting. The thing about transforming art into business is that it takes time for you to be popular, specifically in the online community.
But, if you’re starting to gain fans because of your webcomics, find connections so you can install a booth in a comic convention. When fans appear to greet you in your booth, most likely they would buy anything that has your comic characters or trademark statements.
Printed Comic Books
Okay, I know this sounds ironic – but you can actually earn by printing what you post online. However, this is one of the final options already. This is most likely to happen when your webcomics are already massive hits. You should partner with a popular publishing company. You can also include new collections in your printed materials.
Speaking of print, you can also merchandise your webcomic characters through dolls, toys, stickers, shirts and other usual merchandising materials.
Common Mistakes of Webcomic Artists
Now, we’re heading to the don’ts when you pursue the business of webcomics:
DON’T expect easy money.
Being passionate too much about pursuing your art is not good in some instances, especially if you don’t have a plan B on how to pay the bills. Webcomic business is definitely not something that can give you earnings right after you post something. Some creators actually admitted that it took them a long time, usually several years, to feel their comics’ success financially.
Webcomic business requires your skills and patience. The competition nowadays also makes everything harder than it is. You also have to be friendly and interactive with readers. In addition, the episodes must be updated as often as possible. To lessen the pressure, don’t think about the success of other artists. Yes, they’re earning money but not in an easy way at first.
DON’T start merchandising early.
Many novice webcomic artists haven’t earned more than they expected because they kept on spending for merchandise while not earning enough from their comics. They usually put print publishing and designing their t-shirts first before planning their storylines ahead. This can lead to bad storylines in the middle or fans getting impatient because the next episode takes too long to get released.
Also, don’t focus on merchandising the characters. Try to feel the vibe of fans on what they really like about your webcomics. If your comics became popular because of epic lines, make statement shirts. If the central part of your story is a haunted house, then prioritize that image in merchandising.
DON’T start when you don’t know how to finish the story.
Some people are only optimistic and enthusiastic in the beginning of a project. In the long run, however, they realize that they don’t have the patience and enough creative juices for it. To be more specific, this can also happen to webcomic artists. The right thing to do is initiate a “test drive” for at least a month to make sure that you have the right speed, storyline and technique.
However, it would be better if the posts are per episode, not a bulk good for a month. It is nice to keep the readers wait for a while before the next episode. That only means that they patronize your business.
Planning the storyline doesn’t mean putting it all in. You can just focus on the first three episodes, climax and ending. These are the most important parts of the story. If you ever think about something else, try to include it in the story while trying to connect it to the climax and ending. You will always find a way. Just let your imagination run through.
It is nice to pursue our dreams and passion instead of sticking to a day job that we don’t like at all. But, simple planning can really go a long way. We must always think twice before making a major decision in life, especially when it comes to career.