What's the Back Story on Your Art?
10 Free Ways Artists Can Get Publicity
Selling Art with Confidence
The Power of Repeat Sales
6 Ways to Sabotage Your Art Business
5 Steps to Gaining Referral Business
It's Not All About the Money
Consistency is Key to Making Art Sales
Should You Quit Your Day Job?
6 Display Tips to Increase Your Art Sales
Making a Profit with Your Art
What Blue-Chip Galleries Can Teach Us About Social Media Networking
Artists Need A Business Plan
Your Greatest Asset in Finding Gallery Representation
The Personal Touch
Sell Your Art into the Corporate Market
Tell Your Story, Sell More Art
The Price is Right
Confessions of a Professional Art Gallery Closer
How to Create Raving Fans by Telling the Story of Your Art
Burnout & Its (Sometimes Surprising) Consequences
How to Get Into A Gallery, and Succeed With A Gallery
The Power of Persistence
Build a Budget for Success: How I Tripled My Income in 2 Weeks
Learning to Sell Art: Investing in Yourself
Top Traits of Successful Artists
What Makes Art Remarkable?
Working for Free
The Evolution (and Re-Evolution) of An Art Business
Ann Rea: Artist, Entrepreneur, Instant Success
How Do You Know When It’s Time To Become An Artist?
8 Ways to Improve Your Online Portfolio
Artists, Do You Need an Agent?
The Power of Consultative Selling
How to Make Your Customers Fall in Love with You
Artist Housing Projects
The Pinterest Guide to Selling Art Online
Artists Who Sell: How to Write a Killer Sales Page (and why)
The 5 Biggest Mistakes that Artists Make on Their Blogs and How You Can Avoid Them
Business Plans for Artists: Here, I Did It for You!
How to Write An Artist's Statement That Doesn't Suck
How to Make Your Art Stand Out Online?
10 Strategies to Improve Your Art Sales
Social Sharing on Artist Websites & Online Galleries
Why Artists Should Avoid Gallery Representation
5 Art Pricing Lessons I Learned the Hard Way
How to Research Your Online Art Market
The Crowdfunding Guide for Artists: Part 1
12 Things all Starving Artists Believe
Personal Branding for Artists
How Paula Manning Lewis Has Sold More Than 30,000 Pieces of Art
How to Build An Art Business While Working a Day Job
The Benefits of Buying Art Online
Beginning Your Journey as an Artist
Art for Art's Sake
1. Remain in the dark. It makes sense that anyone in business should keep up with their industry, right? But many artists don't have a true understanding and are unaware of the many ways they can market and sell their work.
The good news is that you don't need to reinvent the wheel to sell your art. There are plenty of really useful resources out there, from blogs about art marketing, to books and magazines, online courses, workshops and more that will teach you best practices. In fact, there is so much information that it's hard to miss. Start educating yourself by reading regularly about the business of art, and consider how you can put that information into action and start moving forward.
2. Fail to plan. Do you have specific and measurable plan for your business? Anyone who is vague about what they want to accomplish can't make a game plan to reach their goals. Create a written business plan. Write down the vision that you have for your business and the way you want to live. Set goals so that you can identify steps to reach them, and make note of your progress. The old maxim "Failing to plan is planning to fail" is very true.
3. Isolate yourself. Artists who work alone and don't have a network of support are more likely to feel frustrated and unsure of whether they are taking the right steps in their business. A community is essential to getting feedback, finding more resources and sharing opportunities. Whether your outreach is joining a guild, attending an artist salon, or becoming active on social media, it will help keep those feelings of isolation at bay, and help you grow as an entrepreneur.
4. Take on too much. Perhaps you'd like to sell your photography, but you also want to start wholesaling pottery and by the way, you plan to write a book, too. Pursuing three different directions at once is a form of self-sabotage, and yet it's very common.
Everything extra that you add to your plate slows down your progress. Choose your direction, and commit to it. Indecision (which causes inaction) is a huge business killer that leaves artists wondering why they aren't more successful in sales.
5. Take it personally. Presenting your art for sale is a public step. Many artists have very deep feelings about what they create, and tend to take comments, or lack of sales, very personally. Your work isn't for everybody. Focus on your targeted market and find ways to reach them.
Selling your work to customers is actually more about them, not you. If someone says no, or gives you negative feedback, make note of anything there that is valuable to you, and then move on. Taking criticism or rejection personally can paralyze you and your business efforts.
6. Don't follow up. In business, it's all about the follow up. When you hear of an opportunity and don't pursue it, you lose out. When you made one attempt to reach a prospect and never contact them again, you lose out. When you half-heartedly begin an email newsletter or blog or social media campaign and then fizzle, you lose out.
Business is built on a sustained effort of persistent, consistent contact and follow up to gain traction and market share.
How many more can you add to this list?
Have you overcome self-sabotage to grow your art business successfully?
This article is courtesy of Carolyn EdlundCarolyn Edlund, founder of Artsy Shark, is a business writer, speaker and consultant for artists. She is the Executive Director of the Arts Business Institute, presenting at art business workshops throughout the United States. Carolyn works with artists every day in strategy sessions designed to help them structure their businesses, set and reach their goals. Find out more about scheduling your own business consultation with Carolyn here: https://www.artsyshark.com/build-your-art-business/