This Is Only A Test: Marketing Experiments to Improve Results for Your Art Business

Painting by M. Jane Johnson

You are undoubtedly investing a lot of time and resources into your art business: websites, blogs, social media, newsletters, postcards, and more. As an entrepreneur interested in earning money from your art, you want to understand what’s working and what isn’t.

©C. Tanner Jensen, L’Air du Temps II. Oil on canvas, 40 x 60 inches. Used with permission.

Every marketing effort should be a test. Nothing on your plate should be considered sacred.

You aim for increasingly better results. Test it!

What brings you the most clicks? What has given you the most shares on Facebook? What did you send that encouraged immediate responses from recipients?

Here’s a list of numerous things you might want to test to improve your results.

Online

Your goals: more visitors, more page views, more time on your site, more sales.

Increase the size of the image. Decrease the size of the

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How to Improve Your Slide Submissions for Juries

Sherri Woodard Coffey’s booth shot.

One of the sessions at the Arts Festival Conference in Portland, sponsored by ZAPP, was “Public Portfolio Critique.”

A mock jury of 6 people sat at the front of four screens in a large room. One at a time, artists’ slide presentations were projected as they might be in a slide jurying situation. The jurors offered valuable feedback for each set that was projected, and I took loads of notes.

Here’s what I learned. Most of these notes are from the jurors, but I’ve thrown in some of my own observations.

Patty Hankins’ booth shot for Beautiful Flower Pictures.

 

You have 20 seconds to impress the jury with your slides.

The festival organizers in the room had anywhere from 500 to over 2000 applicants for their events. They can’t spend more than 20 seconds on each set of slides.

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Yep, It’s Art and It’s for Sale

yep-for-sale

Imagine the scenario: A patron visits your open studio event, walks around for a few minutes, and asks, “Are these for sale?” Or this version: A friend shares an image of your art that you posted on Facebook. Hundreds of people see it and a handful wish they could own it. But they think they can’t afford it because there’s no price. So they forget about it and move on.

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Twitter Tweekly for March 23, 2014

@abstanfield on Twitter

A feature of my top tweets from the past couple of weeks. This week, my favorites are marked with a *. >>> Report: Super-rich, favoring just a few artists, drive art market latimes.com/entertainment/… Continue Reading…

How to Use iPhoto + 1 App for Your Art Inventory and Exhibition Entries

All artwork ©Elaine Luther.

Were you, like me, crushed when FileMaker discontinued Bento? I don’t know about you, but I wasn’t prepared to restart the search for new inventory software. Instead, I asked, how I can maximize what I’m using already?

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Turn On Your Cell Phones

Ayn Hanna and Barbara Gilhooly at the Visionary Art Museum. Photo courtesy the artists and used with permission.

What if, instead of worrying about everyone with a cell phone camera in front of your art, you encouraged taking photos and sharing? Don’t dismiss this right away. Let me explain. On two occasions I have witnessed audiences embrace a speaker or situation that encouraged photography. Here’s how those went down.

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Essential WordPress Plugins for Artists: Showing Off Your Art

Kim Bruce WordPress NextGEN plug in

I saved my all time favorite plugin for the final installation of my top choices for WordPress plugins: NextGEN Gallery. There is so much that you can do with NextGEN Gallery, the least of which is managing and organizing your work into separate distinct galleries.

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Should Your Older Art Be Put Out to Pasture?

Poor things. They’re barely three years old and they’re already considered past their prime. I’m not talking about the horses running the Triple Crown races this year. I’m talking about your art – where you should and shouldn’t show aging work.

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Anyone Can Snip: Protect Your Art with Watermarks

Guest blogger Kim Bruce shares how adding an (unobtrusive) watermark to your images protects your art and provides a way for people to find you and your site.

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Go Ahead and Spoil the Surprise

Margret Short: The Tears of Fernad

Consider posting online previews of your work before an opening, but remember – you don’t have to reveal all of the work in a show at once, nor do you have to reveal it to everyone.

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