Double Rainbow from my backyard, may be another painting down the road!  Double Rainbow from my backyard, may be another painting down the road!

I love marketing and finding new ways to reach my audience and provide a better service, so I attended this free art marketing seminar yesterday at the Santa Fe Convention Center, an all day event with free lunch to boot!  I had some of my own questions written down before the speakers took the stage, such as:

  1. Should artists use facebook/twitter?
  2. How can I reach serious art buyers?
  3. Advertise in art magazines worth it?
  4. Should Ebay/Etsy be considered for online art store?
  5. Selling prints a good option?

I didn’t need answers just yet, there was a lot of information to grasp, so here are some of the highlights I learned.

  • Put prices on the art, most people don’t like to ask prices and rather than ask, they leave.
  • Write detailed description of art on blog.
  • Provide clear instructions for how someone can buy your art and how you’re going to get it to them.

Why blog?

  • Fans can easily share your content.
  • Reveal the person behind the art.
  • Revise content into E-newsletter.
  • Teach what you know.
  • “Live-Blog” from art events.

Why Twitter?

  • 44.5 million unique visitors to date
  • Real, quick-time updates
  • Communicate with customers
  • Show your process
  • Build community with other art “tweeters”
  • Make special offers
  • Twitter pages are picked up by google
  • Hold contests/giveaways

If you want to make books, check out Blurb.  For business cards, check out Moo.  I have my cards from Moo and have received great response.

Why YouTube?

  • 62% of American consumers have used or watched videos on YouTube.
  • Tell stories about your work, your process and you.
  • Demo how you create
  • Share footage from art shows
  • Teach what you know

I’ve done one YouTube video here and plan to do more, it seems like a great tool to offer personal insight on the creative process and your art.  

Here’s how artists can refocus their efforts:

“More creations to a broader audience”

  • Purpose – Why are you making this piece?
  • Scope – How large is your project?
  • Timeline – How long can you complete project?
  • Target Audience – Who buys your art?
  • Delivering your message – How will you get the word out?

Non-essential spending is hit the hardest

For every trend, there is a counter-trend

  • Fewer print publications – more online venues
  • Mass offerings – mass customization
  • Status purchases – personal fulfillment
  • Luxury spending – “I deserve a treat, dammit!” (Like a piece of artwork)

Harness your Strengths

  • Determine your unique strengths, no better time to carve your niche.
  • Elevate & separate yourself from others
  • Cultivate the personality behind the work
  • Develop your “Elevator Speech”.  Describe your work in 60 seconds, such as what is unique, your technique, your relevant analogies to artists, refs to art movements, etc…

These are some of the main highlights from my notebook, but I feel you can learn something valuable here.  To top it off, I even made a cool friend in which we’re looking to collaborate on some future projects.  Collaboration and risk-taking with amazing customer service are just a few topics that just may give you new life to your career while helping others.  Flexibility will broaden an audience.  Listen to customers and their needs.  You have to surprise, charm & engage people.  Surpass expectations.  Start an art collection and support the arts (Zatista has a great article on this) It seems the “old” way of doing business is redefining itself for new and improved business values, and that is quite refreshing.