Some types of art come with considerable challenges. This is one among many reasons we have so many specialties in our art team. One of those specialties that most of our clients don’t realize they need until they see it is mechanical design.
We have a complete 3D art team in addition to our traditional animation, pixel art and illustration teams. When we develop a new mesh, we always start with a basic blueprint. Some studios call these concept art. We take it a step further. We call them technical designs. They are special inks our 3D artists can use as interactive blueprints to guide the design of original 3D meshes.
Because our team is so good at building these technical inks, we can translate those skills into the design of just about any man-made machine, vehicle or structure. Spacecraft, sailing ships, moon bases, energy weapons, robots, mechs and electronic circuitry are just some of the possibilities. What makes it even better is we can take those mechanical designs and turn them into 3D models and then into 3D printed playsets using the exact same art.
Our motto is “if it’s man made, we can make it better and more exciting in your choice of colors.”
Today, it is possible for an independent game developer or comic artist to create new revenue streams that were unheard of even ten years ago. If you’re a fan of Marvel Entertainment, you probably know that if it weren’t for the toys and action figures based on Spider-Man and other iconic characters, Marvel would have gone out of business long before they got a chance to launch their cinematic universe.
Animation, comics and in some cases even games are often a wash financially. The costs of getting a product to market in those businesses can be steep, and the revenue options can be scarce. Fortunately, that’s not where the best revenue opportunities are found. There is no marketing on Earth better than placing your character in the hands of one of your fans. It is an experience that cannot be beat no matter how much you spend on effects or exciting storytelling.
It is also by far the most lucrative way to monetize your work. We can take your character and turn it into a color 3D printed action figure, collectible statue or souvenir, and we can do it at rates that would make most toy companies turn eight shades of green.
The next time you take your project to a convention, and you want to stand out in the crowd, take some of our toys along. When everyone is gathered around your table and playing with them, and all the other artists and developers are trying to figure out your secret, you’ll see why merchandising has been king in the entertainment business for the last 60 years.
Cold Beverage Studios started out as a production line for a webcomic in 2008. That comic and its sequel helped us build an audience of more than a quarter-million readers and went on to become the flagship title for the largest English-language webcomic association in the world. At our height we had more than 70,000 readers a day, and now, we’ve had 12 years to perfect our techniques.
It took five people 18 man-hours to make each of our comic pages, but once we got the line running, we went a full seven months without missing a single regular update. The books based on those webcomics are still among our top-selling e-book titles.
All our digital art production uses the same techniques we learned making those comics. We do rough pencils, finished pencils, inks, flats and shaded color with a complete team of specialist artists. Individually, they are as talented as they come. As a team, they routinely accomplish the impossible.
Our digital paint, digital illustration and character design commissions all rely on the same art team that took our comic titles to the top. We can put that exact same team to work for you.
Everyone recognizes the power of a great cinematic. Previews of upcoming entertainment experiences have become a cultural tradition in their own right. Every great cinematic can benefit from the big voice. It adds dramatic context, it generates excitement and it can become the sound of your project.
We have a Big Giant Voice. He is as recognizable as he is talented, and you will simply never be able to find a better alternative if your purpose is to produce a high quality audio or video project to help promote your business, product or service. When the Big Giant Voice teams up with the Internet’s Original Stunt Writer, it gets even better.
Because our studio is an integrated team, our character actors have the benefit of constantly working with writers, artists, musicians and other accomplished performers on a wide variety of projects.
We like to say we have advanced creative sensibilities, and when it comes to our soundtracks, the immense talent we can deploy quite literally speaks for itself. There are few projects that can’t benefit enormously from a human voice, and if you’re looking for a way to get an important message across, especially one that will lead to sales, new fans or successful crowdfunding, you should consider one of the hundreds of personalities and characters we can turn into your personal spokesperson.
This is one of two commercials my studio created for our latest Facebook advertising campaign.
Internet marketing has changed quite a bit since I started out back in the mid-90s. In those days we sold shareware on a much smaller web and many of us did quite well. If you want to know how well, look up a game called Doom. My first commercial software application for Windows was pretty successful, and my first game project remained my best-seller for a number of years.
Cost-per-click advertising was in its infancy then. For most, success was hit-or-miss, and measuring the effectiveness of a campaign involved more than a little guesswork. I built an enormous webcomic marketing platform around a banner advertising service called Project Wonderful, and did the same for a series of online games using a pre-roll interactive ad service called CPMstar. Our webcomics had more than 70,000 readers a day. Our top game had more than 1.7 million plays. But it was still difficult to tell if our advertising investments were paying off.
Then I discovered Facebook. It took me seven months, a lot of experimentation and a lot of spending to figure out the right way to turn targeted CPC ads into sales and profits. The footwork and analysis weren’t easy. It required time and dedication. Once I got it right, however, the results spoke for themselves.
My first major success was marketing my military science fiction novels. I correctly determined not only the demographics of my readers, but I also employed an innovative “extra step” in focusing my message. As a result, the relevance of my ad creatives skyrocketed, reaching a perfect 10 out of 10. My cost per click plummeted to single digits, and I ended up earning as much as six to one returns on my spends. That means for every dollar I spent marketing my four-novel series, I earned six dollars in sales.
Over the following months, I continued studying the targeted ad market. I examined how my creatives interacted with social media in general and with Facebook and Instagram specifically. I identified key strategies that would allow my campaigns to reach customers rather than just audiences. I began to see how the most lucrative buyers could be found, and how to make sure my ad creatives would be relevant to them. As a result, I became capable of analyzing a campaign and knowing ahead of time if the numbers made sense. After all, there’s no point in advertising if at the end of the campaign you aren’t making anything. The longer my campaigns ran, the more they made.
In September of 2019, my services were requested to help promote a benefit for a local historical society. Our goal was to sell tickets for a steam locomotive excursion in Southern California. Tickets were a few hundred dollars each. All we had to do was find fans of the old-style steam trains of the past.
Using Facebook’s tools, I did just that. I built a creative that came right out of the gate with a nine out of ten relevance score and reached a 10 out of 10 relevance score within a few days. Sales poured in. Our click-through rates were in the double digits. Our conversion rates were nearing five percent, meaning that for every 100 people who clicked on the ad, five people made a purchase. At a retail price of several hundred dollars each, it didn’t take long for sales to climb into the thousands and then tens of thousands.
It was during this campaign that I put something I call my “Maximum Sales Principle” to work. When I was marketing science-fiction novels, I had to rely on a strategy that incentivized customers to buy the entire four-book series rather than just one book. Why? Because the Maximum Sales Principle requires that revenues support the marketing costs. It’s not enough to just get sales. My method has to produce sales that cover costs and also produce profits.
When I put the same principle to work for the steam locomotive project, my creatives and campaign helped generate $112,700 in sales for my client in fifteen days. The average cost per click was eleven cents, which means given our estimated 4.7% conversion rate, each sale had a total advertising cost of about $2.34. For every dollar spent on advertising, we generated $149 in sales.
One hundred forty-nine to one returns.
My Maximum Sales Principle is an equation that tells me if a marketing campaign can be successful. It takes into account data like the price of the product, the average cost of an advertising click, the length of a campaign, whether there is an audience for the product or not, and so forth. Essentially, it tells me if an ad campaign can make money or not.
You could be offering freelance services, selling a mobile or PC game or looking for new clients for your law firm or accounting business. You could be crowdfunding. You could be building subscribers on a YouTube or Twitch channel, finding customers for your plumbing business, marketing a series of thriller novels or selling products at retail on a popular e-commerce site. Why, you might just be looking for readers for your new comic. I’ve marketed them all, and marketed them profitably.
No matter what your business is, whether it’s full-time or just a side hustle, I can put the Maximum Sales Principle to work for you. I can build your creative, identify your buyers and reach them locally, nationally or worldwide.
Want to be in the video game business? What if a studio offered to license you a working, commercial-quality game you could publish and begin selling the same day?
We can do just that. Our first title is a spacecraft landing game featuring our art, voices, original music, animation, proprietary engine, characters and story. It’s a lot of fun, it runs on both PC and mobile, and you can license it for a fraction of what it would cost to develop the same game from scratch.
In our fully licensed games, you get access to our entire range of talent including our production and design staff. You pay to acquire the license, and then pay a monthly minimum fee or a percentage of your revenues, whichever is greater.
Putting a team like ours together took us more than ten years. You can capitalize on our hard work and your good fortune by leveraging our experience and skill to put yourself into business right now. Today.
Far and wide will you search before you find another studio with the talent and the experience to produce original hand-drawn animation. We have veteran artists in-house from places like CalArts and RMIT University in Australia, and the work they do is nothing short of astonishing.
If you aren’t just looking for great designs, but you also want those great designs to come to life, our studio has the capability to show your audience something they won’t find anywhere else.
One of the key obstacles for new developers is building a quality game engine. While it has become much easier over the years, it can still be a major burden to design, code and test a quality foundation for a game project, especially given the limited funds and time many new teams face.
Our long experience in the business has helped us develop efficient ways of thinking about such projects. We know, for example, games that are short on scope and long on creativity have the greatest chance of success and present developers with the least overall risk. That’s why we’ve developed a library of reusable, tested and well-documented game engines that can be adapted for side-scrollers, dress-up and open world RPG titles. We’re adding new game types all the time. All a developer has to do is adjust the features and plug in their art, and their game is in beta: Ready to test and deploy on PC or mobile.
Every engine comes with optional month-to-month support and can be licensed on an open-ended basis for a fraction of the cost of developing from scratch.
Our artists are among the very few in the industry to have shipped profitable commercial game titles consisting of nothing but small-scale pixel art. We built entire technologies around our mastery of the form, including articulated characters, oversize beasts, complex maps, overlays, stackable content and stunning visual effects.
We take pixel art pretty seriously because we know how popular it is and how it can enhance a game if done right. Our artists are talented, experienced and knowledgeable and deliver top quality in record time. If you need sprites or tiles, and especially if you plan to make them part of your mobile or PC game project, you will find no finer team anywhere in the business.