Sunday, August 4, 2013

mARkeTing is Almost as Important as Painting

Holding my framed copy of the magazine

mARkeTing almost as important as painting itself and every once in a while I have to ask myself am I doing everything I can to get myself out there.   This thought is more on my mind since it has been over 3 months since I have sold anything.  I found this article online and was pleased to see that most of the 16 suggestions I am already doing but a refresher never hurts.

Many of the artists I have grown to know in my two years of claiming to be one know very little about self promotion and frankly don't take advantage of the technology that is out there so besides this article I thought I would share some of the things I have done recently.

1.  BLOG, BLOG, BLOG AND BLOG!-  This isn't as hard as it sounds because as you can see I'm writing a blog right now and I like to write.  Even if you just post your most current painting to share or write a few lines about that art show you are going to it is getting out there.  I feel that it is important for people to identify with you as the artist on a personal level and blogging is the best way to do that.  Do you like your cat or dog?  Do you live near a tourist area?  Do you like old ghost towns?  Find something that will make you stand out and use that to BRAND yourself.  I try to blog several times a week and I check my blog statistics almost daily to see how many hits I have.

2.  Get a Website-  I love as I found it to be easy to use and I think it looks pretty professional for a free site.  My website is and I would love it if you want to browse my site and even ask me questions about it.  I check my statistics almost daily and so far my daily record for page hits has been 100 just a few weeks ago on July 19th.  Sometimes there are only 15 and other days I might see 75.  I don't know what makes the difference but I do know that on an average my page hits continue to climb and that is a VERY GOOD thing!  Eventually I believe that activity will generate sales for me.

3.  Join a Local Group- I joined the Vegas Artist Guild nearly 3 years ago and even served a year as their treasurer.  I made valuable friendships and have a number of opportunities to show my work that I wouldn't otherwise have.  If you want to be an artist, then you have to rub shoulders and elbows with artists (even if they are covered in paint and smell like turpentine).  I know have joined several other groups and they all have a number of opportunities.

4.  I have a account-  This is site that allows me to upload my images and then serves as a place that the public can order prints or cards with my images.  FineArtAmerica takes care of all the details and they send you a commission check each month for those sales.  I check my visitors to this site daily and browse the artwork that has just sold to get a feel for what is selling out there.

5.  Join a Co-op Gallery-  I have been a part of the City of The World Gallery in Las Vegas since January.  I rent a wall space and have about 15 pieces hanging there.  Each month the community has an art event called First Friday and this is a great chance to talk to the public about your work.  I get many compliments and positive comments and eventually that will equal sales.  I have to believe that.  There is no room for negative thoughts when it comes to marketing so don't get discouraged.

6.  Have FUN!  Don't paint just for sales but rather let the sales come from painting what you like.  I have to admit that I have been painting several smaller works (8x10) with the hope that a $50 price tag will be easier to sell over a large (24x36) piece that I'm asking $300 for.  I might like to paint large pieces better but my little chickens have been a blast to paint and they are so much faster to finish.

7. Find your Niche- If your art involves a specific location or industry then try to think of venues that aren't necessary art related but see if there is an interest. Get Creative and just jot down anything that comes to mind and then start researching who to contact.   I did that recently and it worked out very well for me.  I'm interested in Nevada Ghost Towns and so often I will paint something that is either a mining ruin or at least a desert scene.  I had painted a prospector panning for gold and decided I would actually contact the magazine, Gold Prospectors and low and behold they decided to do an article on my painting.  That article appeared in the Mar/April edition and generated a great deal of interest in my work.  Who would have thought.
Image of the page 1 of 2 in the Mar/April 2013 edition of Gold Prospectors

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