More on Offering Options to Your Audience

This week’s Art Marketing Action newsletter is all about offering options to build your audience. I don’t have prices on my consulting pages because I realized my clients aren’t all the same. They have different desires and are at different points in “taking the plunge.” So, I talk to them, try to understand what they need, and then present them with options for how we can work together.

Here are more examples of offering options–all of which can be done without compromising your signature style (critical!):

1. The jeweler or metalsmith
Various clasps, chaines, and stones.

7thumb2. The potter
Different glazes and sizes. David Beumee offers a wide variety of glazes for his gift and bridal registry.

Know the home trends. Shop (gasp!) Pottery Barn, Crate and Barrel, and Williams-Sonoma. Not only will you see what most people are buying right now, you will, hopefully, be better armed to distinguish your work from the mass market.

3. The photographer
Different sizes, frames and mats. You may have a signature style of framing (many photographers do), but it would be nice to carry around a book of your work featured with other framing styles.

4. The portrait artist
Most offer bust, 3/4-length and full-length portraits of their clients.

5. Anyone
A variety of color. Jan Carson of Moon-Lily Silk Mobiles offers any combination of twelve standard colors of silk for her popular leaf mobiles.

Do what you can to offer options and accommodate your customers.

Image: David Beumee, Three-piece place setting #7. Porcelain. (c) The Artist.

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4 comments to More on Offering Options to Your Audience

  • As far as offering variety in framing, I’m reconsidering that in my art fairs. Historically, I’ve always chosen a frame style that I felt fit the painting. But as I’ve done more art fairs I’m realizing that a consistent look makes a better presentation overall for my booth, and so I’m going to go to a standard frame for new works. Will this mean every painting has the same frame? Not necessarily, but they will have similar appearance. My choices or options will come from offering some work unframed, and if those interested insist, a discount for paintings where they don’t like the frames. Since I’m just now changing over to this philosophy, I’ll be interested to see how it pans out in fairs this fall.

  • Always ask what they are looking for too! The options need to cater to their needs, and that’s not always financial. I always ask if they’re looking for something in particular or are hanging in a particular space/size. If they like certain colour ranges I will bring out other works in those colours for example since not everything can be on show at once. Even if it means smaller sized paintings! I always remind myself: don’t get greedy. The artwork is about me, them loving the artwork is about them. I won’t push a big painting for the sake of the pricetag, I’d rather have a happy customer at any price. :) Tina.

  • When offering options, do you recommend having an options “policy”, so that you are clear what your parameters are, and can offer them in a way that is professional? Or do you recommend feeling out the customer to see what options would make it easier for them to buy? or a blend of the two? Thanks, this is timely for me! Carla Sanders

  • I don’t see the need for a policy per se. You, of course, will have your own guidelines, but individual situations demand flexibility.