There are plenty of people who are willing to help you promote your art, but don’t expect them to know where to begin.
If you’re one of the many artists who are showing in non-art venues like restaurants, coffee shops, and bank lobbies, you might be resigned to the fact that these venues can be challenging for sales.
But if you’re an art ninja, you will never tell yourself such a story. You must believe that any venue is the best venue for you at the moment.
Vow to make the most of your opportunities by going the extra mile to enlist others to promote your work for you – wherever you’re showing your art.
Scratch the back of the person in charge. Your contact at a venue may be lower on the totem pole, but be sure you also know the decision-makers as they set the tone for the whole venue. Invite these people to your studio well in advance of your exhibit opening. Send them Thank You notes, say nice things about the venue on their Facebook page, and promote the heck out of their business.
Invite yourself to staff meetings at the venue to educate employees about your art. Give them the language they’ll need to talk with others about your work.
Don’t create a convoluted message that requires a PhD to decipher. Provide memorable sound bites that can be quickly recalled. Put the blurbs on one side of a postcard-sized piece of paper that employees can refer to.
Drop in from time to time to check on your art and to find out how the work is being received. Ask if there have been any questions that you could answer.
Call when you can’t drop in. Email is okay, but it doesn’t relate subtleties that can be detected in someone’s voice. Pick up the phone and ask what you can do to lend a hand.
Say Thank You in a timely and appropriate manner. Did someone on staff help sell a big work for you? Send a handwritten Thank You note or give them a smaller work of art to encourage them to keep doing more of the same (and just because you’re a generous soul).
You will remain your only champion if you so choose.
Or you can nurture a quiet army of fans on your behalf.
How do you enlist others to help promote your art?
This post was inspired by an interview with Shelly Lewis Stanfield, my sister-in-law, about how she has sold hundreds of paintings through nontraditional outlets. The audio and transcript of this interview is available to all Art Biz Incubator members. Check us out.