I’ve mentioned this little project of ours for a while now but, until now, there hasn’t been much proof that it was ever going to exist. That changes today!
The problem is, most of us don’t have the faintest idea how. We hope we’ll make something beautiful, somebody will want to buy it, and then… ummm… right… so somebody will buy it and we’ll have some money. And… then what? We just want to keep creating. And, hopefully, people will keep buying.
But there is so much more to it than that. Who is going to buy from you? How are they going to find you? How will you show them your work? How will you keep yourself in the back of their mind – or better still, the front of their mind?
It’s called marketing and I know that to some artists, it can feel like a dirty word. But the fact is, if you want to make a living from what you create, you need to have a plan to keep people interested in you, and more importantly, buying from you.
There are so many components to marketing, but unlike accounting and banking and legal matters where you should, at the very least, consult a professional from time to time, a lot of it can be done by you as you start out.
Early on in my career, I was fortunate enough to have the opportunity to run a small business without the financial concerns of actually owning one. It was one of the best learning experiences I’ve ever had and is probably the one single thing that prepared me to take the big plunge – far more so than actually being a designer. I also learned a lot of valuable lessons the hard way – hopefully, I can pass on some of what I learned to others. And one thing that surprised me was just how simple – and fun – marketing can be. It’s creative in its own way. And it doesn’t have to cost a fortune.
You can be the most talented photographer, designer, writer, chef, comic book illustrator or jewelery maker out there but that won’t guarantee you success or growth. That part comes from paying attention to your finances, pricing your work, working hard and learning how to market yourself.
So over the coming weeks I’ll be writing a series of posts on marketing yourself as an artist on-line. We’ll also be looking at topics like creating an identity for yourself that reflects who you are as an artist – and how that should come through in a consistent manner in all your marketing materials. Other topics will include utilizing social media, creating portfolios, networking, logo and brand creation and blogging.
The first one will go live on Monday, February 1st and will be a two part piece on why you need a website – and how it doesn’t have to cost you and arm and a leg!
If you have suggestions or ideas for future posts, please be sure to let us know!