To Trade or Not to Trade (with Another Artist)

art21 PBS

You’re minding your own business at your show when an artist you don’t know comes up and asks you if you want to do a trade: his artwork for yours. You don’t know anything about this artist’s work. How do you respond?

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Roll Out the Red Carpet for Your VIPs

Red security rope by red carpet.

Your friends and followers on social media are valuable, but the people who buy from you and entrust you with their email and physical addresses are your VIPs.

My Art Biz Insider subscribers are my VIPs. If you are a subscriber, you know that I like to share gifts periodically as a reminder of how important you are to me.

My gifts are mostly worksheets or audio recordings, which wouldn’t be appropriate for your collectors and potential buyers.

So what do you give them? How do you roll out the red carpet for VIPs who offer their support and trust?

Here are some ideas.

Share Sneak Peeks

Before you post a new work to your blog or social media site, consider showing your list first.

Make it exclusive to them for 5 days and make it clear that

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No Action After the Down Payment

Sandy Askey-Adams, Quiet Evening 2

Here’s the situation . . . Someone gave you a down payment on one of your artworks. There was no agreement that outlined terms of payment. Months or even years have passed. The would-be collector hasn’t returned letters, emails, or phone calls. You’ve tried! Deep Thought Thursday

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How Evernote Can Save Your Relationships with Collectors

Database/spreadsheet programs for artists can be complex and clunky. Guest blogger Laurie McCarriar outlines 5 ways to use Evernote, a free app for Mac, PC & mobile devices, to cultivate collectors.

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Buying The Artist

“People don’t buy art, they buy the artist.” Deep Thought Thursday: Discuss this quote. What does it mean? Is it true?

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Collecting Your Collectors’ Names

Lee Shiney Art

Artist Lee Shiney creates a buyers’ packet for the back of his art so that he knows where his art ends up. When people register the art, they can also request to be added to his mailing list.

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The Art Collector Next Door

Kyle Vincent Thomas, Weathered (study). Oil on canvas mounted on panel.

Don’t delete people from your mailing list or wipe them off your radar just because you think they’re not potential buyers.

Kyle Vincent Thomas, Weathered (study). Oil on canvas mounted on panel, 20 x 16 inches. ©The Artist

Part of your job as marketing wizard for your art is to figure out who your audience is. But there will be times when you come across people attracted to your art that don’t conform to your notion of an ideal patron.

Embrace them!

When I was a naïve young curator, I worked with a number of collectors in our local community.

Some people looked, dressed, and lived as you would expect a collector to. They were well-coiffed, wore

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Blogging to attract art collectors

Collectors want to know you’re going places. Reveal–through your blog, Facebook, Twitter, etc.–that your art career is active. If your work is good and you present it well, we’ll be interested. If you have good content, you will gain readers. More readers=more people to refer you.

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Have a Sale with Class

Carol W. Larson, Relic III. Hand-dyed and painted textile. (c) The Artist

I’m having a big sale this week. I can recall only one other sale in the history of and that was my 5-year anniversary sale last year. This is even bigger because all of the audio is 20-40% off. It was time. If you’ve ever had a sale or ever considered having a sale, read on.

I don’t usually recommend sales for artists. They seem to somehow cheapen the art. You’d never witness a high-end gallery with a neon “SALE” sign in the window. As they say, it just isn’t done. Our product is above that. But we do know that even high-end galleries offer discounts to certain collectors as well as to museums. So,

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