Friday, August 12, 2011
Marketing and selling your art online – part one
Order this print today and have it hanging on your wall next week!
How to market and sell your art online? That is what I entered into the Google search box and in a roundabout way have discovered a whole new world of possibilities.
Marketing is about satisfying customer needs profitably. So to begin you have to ask what are you selling, who are your customers, where are they, and what do they want to pay: it's the four p's – product, people, place and price.
If I earned a penny, or even better a dollar every time someone commented on my work with a "WOW" (in particular when viewing the new digital flowers in the Florilegium Solmentes portfolio), I would be a wealthy man. How can one turn those comments into sales?
I decide to offer the flower prints as signed limited edition prints for $200 each, $150 each for two or more. There was the stumbling block: price. Apart from a strange antipathy towards digital prints such as these (do people realize it took me just as long to create these images as it would to make multi-colour linocuts, for example), the price seems to be the most important factor in turning the "WOW" into a desire to buy the work. At least I had some interest and "AIDA", the old acronym so pertinent to advertising (attention, interest, desire and action), can be applied here.
Going back to the four p's, being in the right place, at the right time with the right product, should give you a better chance of making a sale.
Free online galleries and portfolios abound! But there is the catch, if there are so many, it also means there are MANY other artists also trying to market and sell their work online. So you have to (as my grandmother used to say) "stand out from the crowd". For now I am going to throw a handful of bait in the stream and see if the fish are biting and address the profile issue in the next post.
FineartAmerica offers a free account that allows you to upload images of your artwork and sell prints, on demand in an amazing range of sizes and formats (canvas, matted and framed prints etc). While their offer is enticing with the unlimited number of image uploads, the small print limits the number you can actually sell as "print-on-demand". Unless of course you pay $30 for an upgrade to premium membership. So I did and now they have made money from me but I haven't sold anything, yet. Well done FAA.
PS The yellow blackberry flower print is available in a variety of formats from david-esslemont.artistwebsites.com
Gregynog Hall Nigel Beale aka The Literary Tourist , came to visit and recorded our conversation in which he asked me about the history...