Beyond Words: The Importance of Illustration in Effective Marketing Communications  

Pete Newman

Pete Newman Director of Video + Motion Media

Visual graphics elevate a brand and garner more attention than text-based posts.

However, effective illustration is not simply drawing pictures — there needs to be a guiding strategy behind it to resonate with the audience. Graphics can be interpreted differently by each viewer, sometimes in unintended ways. Knowing what you’re trying to communicate and how best to convey the message is the starting point of every illustration. 

The Strategy Behind our Illustrations

That’s a Real Job

Let’s Talk Science

This campaign won a gold W3 Award in 2018 in the Online Video-Technology/Science category.

How do you reach the hardest-to-reach audience?

Research, focus-groups, testing, and comics.

Strategically targeted to grade 8 and 9 students on Snapchat, YouTube, Facebook, and Instagram, the use of comic book-style illustrations helped our national digital campaign in 2018 stand out with a distinctive and playful style.

We always like to meet the target audience where they live, and this fun way of conveying our key messaging has resulted in the series receiving over 1.4 million plays on the Let’s Talk Science YouTube channel alone. Check out the other videos in this fantastic series.

Our Voices, Our Vision

First Light

Our Voices, Our Vision is an 11-part video series demonstrating the impact the six Aboriginal Head Start sites in Atlantic Canada has had. First Light, one of the project proponents, sourced us to create an intro animation for each video.

We set out to transform static photographs compiled from multiple sources into motion. Where the images themselves were taken by different photographers in a multitude of styles, the end result needed to be one consistent piece. 

Our approach was clear: use illustration to recreate elements from the photos into a singular style. The end result is a dreamy, almost surreal, animation showcasing the voice and vision of Indigenous youth from across the years.



Waypoints is a non-profit charitable organization that provides a variety of support services for youth and families. For their 40th anniversary, they wanted to share the positive impact they’ve had on youth and families over the years while keeping details anonymous and confidential.

To accomplish this, we gathered their deeply personal stories and illustrated key moments to animate for the video. Combined with a heartfelt musical score and voice actors, we were able to depict their unique life experiences while also maintaining the privacy they deserved.

Illustrations were critical as a medium to accomplish all the goals.

Visual Storytelling for the Ages

Illustration has been an important part of communication since the first cave paintings more than 40,000 years ago. In modern times, it continues to be integral to how we communicate as a species. 

From deceptively-simple iconography that transcends language barriers to complex works of art, with the right style and technique, brands can leverage illustrations to create deeper connections with their audience.

We’re here
for you

WaterWerks has a long history of building long term relationships, both internally and externally.

From team members that have been with us for over a decade to clients that have trusted WaterWerks for even longer, we’re proud of the work we’ve all accomplished together.

Ready to work with an Agency that cares about you as much as they do the project?

We’re excited to see what we can build for you.

WaterWerks Agency96 LeMarchant RoadSt. John'sNLA1C 2H2 Canada