Attract High-End Buyers

Michele Renée Ledoux

From my inbox:

How does one connect to the buyer agents of high-end customers? How does one get into the loop of being looked at? Performing artists have auditions and can wind up on American Idol, etc. It seems that the rest of us struggle every which way to get out there. Other than having all the necessary qualifications and Internet exposure, how do we get into that select group of artists and designers that is being considered by high-end buyers?

That’s a $10million question, isn’t it? It’s what everyone wants to know. My short answer is “persistence,” but let’s dig deeper. When people ask me a question like this, here’s what I want to know:

How long have you been promoting your art? How many people are on your mailing list, and how have you been using it? How

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Schedule a preview of your art

Janice Mason Steeves, River of Longing. Oil on panel,

Home-based art sales are all the rage. I love the idea because these sales have low overhead and the comfort factor: you’re welcoming your guests into a relaxed, familiar setting. But regardless of how comfortable the setting is, the focus is still on making sales.

Did you ever consider that inviting your fans into your (or someone else’s) home could be a reward in itself? It could be your way of saying Thank You for their support.

Follow the example of artist Janice Mason Steeves. Instead of planning a sale, you could schedule a preview.

Janice Mason Steeves, River of Longing. Oil on panel, 34 x 26 inches. ©The Artist

Let’s say you have a new body of work and an upcoming exhibit of that work. You invite your fans or top collectors to a preview of the work

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Art Marketing Action: Finish Off the Sale & Follow Up

Give your art buyers only what they need at the time of the sales transaction (receipt, business card, etc.) and save the rest for following up at a future date. Here are some ideas for how to keep your name in front of your art collectors.

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Podcast: Include prior connections on your mailing list

Are you assuming–perhaps incorrectly–that certain connections are separate from your art connections? Regardless of the type of work you did before diving into your art career, every contact you have made is valuable. Related

Newsletter (a written version of this podcast)

Don’t shrink your mailing list just yet (newsletter)

I’d Rather Be in the Studio! (book, pages 17-19, 197-211 of the 2008 edition)

Listen & Download

The last episode of the Art Marketing Action podcast was November 22, 2010. You can listen to or download any episode on iTunes.

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Show a little love to your community

It’s February! The month when I (and many others) revert to those days when I used to put Valentine’s Day cards into decorated paper bags that were attached to the backs of elementary classroom chairs. While I no longer stuff greetings into paper bags, I am an easy target for anything with a heart on it or anything that’s pink and red.

Don’t worry, you don’t have to follow suit, and you don’t have to get all sappy. But you can take advantage of the season and show your patrons, collectors, and community a little love. It’s a perfect time to pay attention to that contact list.

Jennifer McChristian, Chapter Four. Oil on panel, 16 x 20 inches. ©The Artist

First, make sure your contact list is up to date. All names, addresses, and email addressees should be entered into

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Secrets to buying art now

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8 Ways to appreciate your Gold Star collectors

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Taking care of art while it’s in someone else’s hands

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Tips for collecting art

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Deep Thought Thursday: Commissioned art

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