Marketing Isn't So Scary

Welcome back, today we’re going to talk a little bit about self marketing.

First of all, put your imposter syndrome on the back burner for a minute. This moment, right now, you are a professional artist whether you tricked everyone into thinking you are one or you tricked yourself into being one. There are so many ways to market and talk about yourself. It’s overwhelming how many options you have available and how to take care of it by yourself. I want to talk about some steps and quick practices in how to manage this part of the back end of your business. We’re going to cover good habits to build, where to talk about yourself, and how to really push your work to the next level with your audience.

Take a few deep breaths, we’re jumping into the deep end here.

When we hear marketing, the first thing that comes to mind for me is billboards and social media. You’re not going to need too much print advertising so don’t stress about that. Let’s talk about social media, where everyone has so much to say about it. If you’re an artist, there’s a handful of different social media websites you’ve used or looked at. Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and TikTok are the top ones that I’m aware of right now. The how to market blogs and videos are inundated with contrary information; what hashtags to use or not to use them, best posting times, and the engagement. I’ve been working through social media, for almost a decade like a troll too big for the room smashing walls down and drooling on everything.

I’ve learned a few things along the way.

  • -post what makes you happy, talk about why it makes you happy.

  • -posting times vary depending on the audience. You’re best time might not be someone else's best time

  • -if you use lesser used hashtags that relate to what you specifically do, you’ll receive more genuine action with your posts with who you want to connect with.

  • -if you use high traffic tags, you’ll get seen more often but you won’t receive genuine engagement on your work.

  • -consistency is more important than quantity.

  • -you’re content doesn’t have to be top of the line quality at first, especially if that mindset is keeping you from getting started in the first place.

Decide on what you want to do, at least to get started. If you’re like me you don’t have much of a niche, but you probably have themes you want to illustrate or show. Find groups and communities, not of artists that do the same thing but of people who participate in those things. If you want to do ttrpg portraits, join a d&d group or ttrpg community. If you want to illustrate book covers, join a writing community. If you want to do pet portraits, draw a group that loves their dogs. With that said, lets talk about some don’ts that I’ve been seeing recently.

  • Don’t send unsolicited messages with your socials or shop information, it’s pushy and rude.

  • Don’t push your content photos/videos/whatever to people who already follow you, it devalues the engagement they give you.

  • Don’t tag followers in your posts unless they have something directly to do with your content.

These things are a surefire way to make your following feel cheap and used. Don’t devalue the people that support you.

Instead provide value to your audience, there’s a lot of ways you can support and encourage them too. I used to think the above meant free items and giveaways at the turn of a hat, and I was wrong. You don’t need to spend money to support the audience and give them a worthwhile experience with your work. Here are some different ways you can do that

  • Share resources

  • Teach them something you learned

  • Comment on their posts, hype them up

  • Do shout outs

We’ll talk about contests and giveaways in a different blog post, so don’t stress about those right now.

If you’re ready for the next stage there’s a few more things you can add to that marketing to do list. Offer a freebie with purchase from your website, start a newsletter, offer subscription services, teach classes, post more frequently (while maintaining that consistency). Talk about everything you do when it comes to your art, your audience wants to know you and about your life. This creates emotional value in your posts, and with emotional value comes long term audience members that genuinely interact with your stuff.

That’s it for this week, fiends. Have a great rest of your week and I’ll see you here next time.

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