Most business and marketing plans are linear, and most artists are anything but linear.
What if, instead of having a traditional business plan, you nurtured a holistic approach to your art career?
That’s what I want to help you do with The See Plan, a new tool to help you see your art career in total. I want you to see that a successful business is not all about making and marketing (the M’s).
The See Plan: 8 C’s for Getting Your Art Seen is circular rather than linear. You need all of the C’s for a healthy business and balanced life, however you define these.
Let me tell you about the 8 C’s.
Everything begins with the art. Without the art, you are not an artist.
It’s time to tie a bow around 2014 and prepare for 2015 by organizing your systems.
The ideas here should take you less than 1 hour, and they will bring peace of mind to your New Year.
1. Update the copyright notices on your website, blog, and newsletter.
Too many sites have old copyright dates on them. I’ve seen some as old as 2007! Blogging platforms will automatically update your copyright, but static sites need your attention now.
I’m not talking about the copyright notice on individual images. I’m referring to the copyright statement on the site, which is typically located in the footer of your pages.
If your website says ©2014, it doesn’t look fresh. Change that to 2015 before you forget.
I took this screen capture of my site earlier in the week. If you scroll down to
Your marketing mix is a blend of actions you take – both online and offline – to promote your art.
Your ideal mix is your ideal mix and nobody else’s.
You have to figure out what works best for you. At the same time, all of the options for where to spend time and energy could drive a person batty.
©Brady Allen, Internecine. Oil, 32 x 48 inches. Used with permission.
Should you be on Twitter?
Should you start a business page on Facebook?
Should you purchase an ad?
I suggest considering 3 criteria for deciding whether or not to make a task part of your marketing mix.
1. You are seeing results.
After you have implemented a marketing task, consistently over time, are you benefiting from it?
Notice the words “consistently” and “over time.” You can’t try
Questions, when used in business planning, are more powerful than statements because they make us think and formulate our own answers. They encourage us to consider our situation, environment, abilities, and resources. See if any of these serve you at the moment.
I seem to be recommending mind maps to artists with great frequency these days, so I thought it would be useful to review what they are and how you can use them in your art business. A mind map is a tool for brainstorming or organizing your ideas. Mind maps are great for creatives and artists because they put words and ideas in a visual format.
Throughout my years in business, I have found timelines to be invaluable for planning. Regardless of how much or little you have going on, timelines help you sleep better at night since you know you have all of your bases covered. I created five timelines to help.
Most artists don’t want to think about what might go wrong in their businesses. It’s not sexy to talk about backing up, getting insurance, or mitigating risk. Art Biz Blog readers (you!) know that these unsexy topics are necessary to confront. Do not put this off. Right about now you’re probably saying Bor-ing! and you want to leave. But this is critical. Take a look at any of the stories on the Craft Emergency Relief Fund (CERF+) website and you’ll see that many artists haven’t acted in time.
If you have a big event or art exhibition coming up, don’t wing it. Create a promotional plan for peace of mind. 1. Define the individual tasks – make each one as specific as possible. They should require just one step to complete. David Allen calls them next actions.
An anonymous artist sent me an email with these stats. The painting she is sending to a juried art exhibition sells for $1200. Other fees involved – which don’t include material, labor, or office time – are: