Being connected to social media is definitely one of the keys to my art success.
It took me many years to achieve international recognition, but Facebook, Friendfeed, Twitter, Linkedin, and Flickr have all been extremely important in introducing my artwork to thousands of viewers over time.
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No matter how busy you are, I believe it is essential for every artist to spend some time on social media every day. This is especially true for artists like myself, who have little money for advertising. Your most important tool is social media. It’s how you’ll establish connections with art collectors, museums, galleries, agents, buyers, and many others.
Two of my favorite places to acquire new clients and viewers are Facebook and Twitter.
It’s very important to start a Facebook fan page and upload your photos so clients, agencies and more can view your work right away and at their convenience. Currently my Facebook fan page has 7970 fans and counting. Each day I acquire from 2 to 10 more.
My Facebook page has generated:
• 159 sales of original paintings
• 4 interviews
• 1 agent
My faithful fans also lend support and comments, and in return, I use my fan page to list special coupons, events, art news and more.
My second favorite social media tool is Twitter. I tweet my art news and new work every day and up to 5 to 10 times throughout the day so my followers can see what I am up to. If you are posting to Twitter be sure to add a link to your art gallery, Etsy shop or personal website so your Twitter followers can view your work in one simple step.
My Twitter account has generated:
• 12 sales
• 2 craft show spotlights
Remember to connect your Twitter to your Facebook pages so you can post to Twitter and have it post automatically on Facebook as well. This is very helpful if you are juggling social media and daily painting.
And don’t forget about blogging or Instagram!
An artist’s blog is one of the key instruments to sales and recognition. If you can make time to write a post 1 to 2 times a day on what you are working on (like your techniques, or a how-to for people to follow along with) it can make for a fascinating and popular blog that will eventually bring you sales both domestic and international.
Today, many people use Instagram as their blog—and the same rules apply. Post 1 or 2 times a day to show people what you’re working on. If you’re unsure how Instagram works, this guide for artists is a great starting point.
How to manage your social media promotion
1. Make a list
Create a list or spreadsheet of all your social media profiles and accounts, so you can refer to it as time goes on and have a quick resource as-needed. Believe me, I failed to do this step from the start and I am sorry now. I am currently still trying to compile my list and have realized that I am a member of over 300 websites from free art listings to social networks.
If I could do it all over again, I would try concentrating most of my time on a few sites instead of stretching myself out to so many venues that it becomes hard to handle. But if you’re like me and want to get your hundreds of sites organized, you might like a new service I’m using called BOUNCE.
Connecting social media accounts can be a big time saver (like Facebook and Twitter). Anytime I tweet, it gets posted to Facebook automatically.
Since Facebook owns Instagram, there are ways to connect those accounts as well. For example, if you buy an ad on Facebook, you also can choose for it to appear on Instagram (which is great for posting artwork photos).
3. Use a bulletin board
Buy or make a bulletin board to put next to your PC so you can write down what task you’re working on each day, like this:
Monday – Post to twitter 4 times, upload new work to Facebook, post a blog to your Ning network, order art supplies Tuesday – Write a blog post, contact 2 licensing agencies, post to Twitter 3 times, list coupon code on fan page
And so on.
I like to schedule all my social media work to start around 4PM and then I try and work until I fall asleep. Creating art is best for me to do in the daytime, so I start around 10AM getting the paints, markers, and canvas ready. Any spray painting is done in the mornings before it gets too hot (I live in Florida).
Having a bulletin board with all my tasks is extremely helpful. Just writing things down is a big help! If I don’t, it’s too easy to forget the little things here, just because there’s so much going on every day.