I know you’ve heard about all the things you need to be doing to build your audience of ideal art buyers and sell more art: post on social media, write an email newsletter, create an Instagram story, write blog posts…and more. It’s overwhelming. To accomplish all of that you would need to clone yourself, right? In this post, I’m going to share with you how 15 minutes and working smarter rather than harder has helped me significantly build my audience.
Understand your ideal art buyer
I really am excited to share this strategy with you, but first things first: you need to understand who your ideal buyer is so you can focus on attracting an audience full of them.
In my course, Create a Marketing Plan for Your Thriving Art Business, I teach identifying your ideal buyer, and we go into depth in that. I have a free version of that lesson that you can use today: The Smart Artist’s Ideal Buyer Worksheet >>
Awareness: The most important part of your art marketing system
Once you have identified your ideal buyer, the next thing that you really have to worry about is awareness. The first step in a marketing system is gaining awareness and growing your audience. Without awareness, you’re never going to get to having an audience of your own that you can engage in a conversation, get them to purchase from you, and bring them back as return buyers.
Awareness is the absolute first and most critical step in that marketing process, so let’s talk about how you can be efficient with the awareness work that you need to be doing.
It’s overwhelming to manage “all the things”
I know you’ve heard about all the things you need to be doing to promote your art. It’s hard to create unique content for your Instagram feed, your Facebook page, your Pinterest account, Instagram stories, your blog, an email newsletter, and more.
It’s totally overwhelming. I know this because I, too, am a micro-business owner. I do nearly all of my own marketing and promotions work, so I have learned to be efficient.
Video content is the foundation
The first step in my strategy is creating video content. You need to be creating video content, too, because:
- Facebook prioritizes video content, especially Facebook live video
- Google prioritizes video content, so it can help your SEO
- Instagram video gets more attention than static posts
- Video is a great tool to connect with your audience on an authentic level
- If you don’t enjoy writing, video is a great way to create original content
So, maybe you agree that video content sounds important, but how are you supposed to record video every week or every other week for your audience and then still do all the other things? Here’s how:
Create one video and use it in these 8 ways:
- Create a 15-minute Facebook or Instagram live video and live stream to the other platform at the same time. I do this with a webcam (for Facebook live) and a small tripod and my iPhone for Instagram.
- Use a video trimming app such as iMovie (Mac), Movavi (PC) or even your iPhone to cut the Instagram video down to 1 or 2 minute segments, then post as an Instagram story and/or Facebook story using an app like Continual or Storeo
- Share the 1 or 2 minute video as an Instagram or Facebook post
- Have the video transcribed using an online service (I use Rev.com), then clean up the transcript and post it to your blog with the embedded video and any images that go along with the post
- Upload the video to your YouTube channel
- Create a Pinterest graphic using Canva and share to Pinterest and all of your other social outlets
- Write a short introduction to the post and send that and a link to the post as an email newsletter (always include information about upcoming opportunities for your readers to interact with you such as an exhibit opening or a juried show you’re a part of as well as a link to your online store)
- Send a pitch to a media outlet where you can find your ideal buyer and include a link to the blog post and video. The artist who gets a story will be the one who provides more content to a reporter. Today’s reporters are looking for someone to pitch them a story in which some of the work has been done for them already.
How to clone yourself
I know what you’re thinking: this is A LOT of work. Yes, if you do all of these things yourself, it is a lot of work. However, you don’t have to do it all yourself.
Other than having a plan, creating the video, and reviewing the transcript-to-blog content, you could find someone else to do this work.
A resource that I like for this is onlinejobs.ph–an online jobs forum for people in the Philippines. Most of the people looking for work on this job site speak English quite fluently. You can find a capable virtual assistant who can handle a lot of the technical marketing tasks for you for $5 or $6 an hour.
It’s a very, very affordable way to get this work done, so all you have to do focus on creating your next piece of content and then get yourself back into the studio
Create a marketing plan for your thriving art business
My Create a Marketing Plan for Your Thriving Art Business course will be launching in May. Within that course, we go deep into clarifying your ideal buyer—with the support of me and other Art Marketing Project members—and far more to help you go from overwhelmed and confused to having a clear marketing plan.
When you have the chance to try out some of these ideas, please come back and share your experiences with me. I would love to hear how this works for you!