Daddy's Christmas Angel

Tuesday, July 7, 2015

Is Marketing for Artists and Writers More Important than the Creative Process?

When I began painting works of art on canvas and, later, started to write books, I truly believed that the creative process was the end goal. When the book was finished or the paint was dry, my part was over.

Not so if business success is the goal.

Once the art or writing is completed, the creative person soon learns that the real work is in the marketing of the finished product. Like it or not, artists and writers need to develop marketing skills. A writer once told me that she spends two days marketing her books for every day she is writing. Without marketing skills, she would be in big trouble.

Some people will decide to develop a marketing budget and hire others to do the work for them. Depending on your choices, that might or might not work well for you. What you can afford might buy less promotion than you need or expect. Much of the marketing still might fall back on you, and it is likely you will have missed the opportunity to get  reviews before the release of your book.
"Map your plan for the road" ©Mary Montague Sikes

Do it yourself:

1. At least six months prior to the book release or the opening of a one-person art show, make a marketing plan. One of the first items in that plan should be the creation of a good press release. Be sure you have one or two good quality photos to accompany that release.

2. If you don't already have a newsletter, start working on one to send out to announce your upcoming release or show. Don't struggle with this. Make it simple and offer information and tips that are helpful to others along with your news. Photos are always helpful.

3. Develop a mailing list. As you work on your plans, add people who are interested in you and in your work to the list you are developing. Collect email addresses at meetings, in your art gallery spaces, on line, on trips, etc.

4. Write articles about your areas of expertise and have them ready to send out to appropriate sites. If your book is about horses, use your research and knowledge to create an article that enhances your reputation in that field. Develop a list of ideas for articles that might include ones highlighting the setting of your book or the location of your paintings (if your work is realistic).

To Be Continued...

For professional artists and writers, marketing is essential, but your must first have a good product to begin your journey into the world of promotion. Go ahead now and map your plan for the road.


Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

I've never had a newsletter, but hopefully I've done everything else right.

Mary Montague Sikes said...

Alex, your comprehensive blog is your newsletter!

Birgit said...

Great tips including the newsletter.

Mary Montague Sikes said...

Thanks, Birgit!