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Motion Hatch: Helping Motion Designers Do Better Business

Feb 18, 2020

As motion designers, our primary goal is often centered on delivering our animations to clients. However, that’s not always enough to stay in business. Increasingly, there are more opportunities to work with clients beyond motion design and get involved in the design side of brand strategy. We also talk about how to use partnerships and content to get more clients.

Philip VanDusen is the founder of Varhaal Brand Design, a brand strategy, design, and marketing agency in New Jersey. He also has a great YouTube channel where he shares his expertise on marketing design and entrepreneurship.

Philip describes how we have the ability to play a huge role in marketing and brand strategy with motion design. This is an amazing, as well as lucrative, sphere to get involved in. Philip suggests that a way to stand out is to broaden your skill set into intellectual and strategic client partnerships. Simply put, motion designers need to be active business partners.

If this sounds daunting, Philip has some good news. You don’t actually have to change much in your business to scale up. Philip explains how strategically collaborating with other creatives can increase what you have to offer without significantly changing the amount of work you need to do.


Getting your name out there and making those connections can be intimidating. Philip talks about how he has met the people he works with. Masterminds and conferences are great ways to do this. So is content marketing. Philip explains how anyone can use this strategy to get their name out and start getting more work as a result.


In this episode

  • Ways to stand out from the crowd as motion designers
  • Recognizing the need to adjust to changing times and situations to stay competitive
  • First steps to take to learn about communication and business strategy
  • The power of strategic collaboration to scale your business
  • Tips for making connections outside of your industry
  • The power of content marketing to build an authentic personal brand and connect with clients
  • How to use partnerships, strategy and content to get more clients
  • How creating free content can lead to important connections down the road



“Design, and any kind of creative product or service, is getting increasingly commoditized. Part of that is due to the fact that we have a global economy and you can get creative services from anywhere and from any culture.” [2:28]

“In order to survive in today’s creative economy, you really have to do more. You have to be more than just a motion designer. You have to try to nurture and develop a language of business.” [3:08]

“It’s never a problem working the work. The problem is finding the work. If you can find the work, you can find people to work the work.” [10:37]

“If you just share what you know, who you are, where you are, and what you’re learning, there are people who will benefit from that.” [26:05]

“There’s a subliminal bank that you’re putting money into every time you put content out into the world. Where people find it valuable, they will start to put you -- your name, your personal brand, your presence -- on a shelf that is above everybody else.” [38:46]



Find Philip VanDusen online

Follow Philip on YouTube | Linkedin | Twitter | Pinterest | Facebook

Creative Strategy and the Business of Design