It always starts with goals.
Determine what the goals are for your marketing plan, or else you’ll be all over the place trying this and that and getting scattered to the winds.
Based on your major take away from last year – decide on the most important goals for this year.
My people want more exposure and a bigger audience, so those are the default goals for this article. (ha!)
Online Social Media
…which should really just be called “media” now as it’s fast becoming mainstream. News and network television are broadcasting and getting their news from social media:
This isn’t even an exhaustive list. All these tools are basically free and can be used to broadcast your art out into the world. The actual globe. Everywhere.
But you can’t just send out all your broadcasting without a home base. All of those social media sites are “lead generators” (finding potential people who will like your art). Those leads need to be directed back to your homebase – ideally, your own domain and website.
You could use a Tumblr or a Facebook page as your de facto ‘website’, but it has it’s risks.
All third party hosts can change the rules, interface, policies at any time without your consent and put a deep flaw in your business plan.
They could also go out of business, or just close up shop and then you’re S-O-L.
Not only have your lost your business site – you don’t even have access to ANYTHING that was posted. Nothing. ALL GONE.
This gives me night terrors.
There’s a lot of crap on the internet.
So what are you going to publish that’s going to get anyone’s attention?
An artist’s dependency upon images is a real positive in the social media realm. Images are impactful, visceral, interacted with often and are easily shared.So great, woohoo! You can share finished images, WIP, behind the scenes, studio shots, pictures of shows and events… what else?
Ask yourself, “What’s valuable to the people that like my art?
What else are they interested in? What other information, skills, posts, value related to my art can I publish that will attract people to what I do?
What kind of stuff like this can I post that people will want to share?”
(And maybe join your mailing list to get it).
I posted a whole bunch of post and incentive ideas for artists on Twitter a couple months ago. I put it together for my email list and it’s also available in the archives. You can join the Library to download.
Use an editorial calendar. It’s just easier.
Now that you kind of know what you’d like to share, now all you need is the when.
Use an editorial calendar – it’s way easier to keep all the balls in the air when you’ve got a calendar scheduled.
The most effective way to promote yourself online with social media is to schedule your tweets and updates to correspond with your major shows, events, sales and promotions.
Send out your valuable content AND mention your event/promo/sale as well.
Make it even more integrated by planning your pics/posts/content publishing to relate directly to your event, so that you can be promoting your show/sale AND growing your audience at the same time. How? That’s how I get paid.
Use the tools. They’re free!
I make regular use out of the social media apps and tools available online for my desktop and my iphone.
I work ahead on my posts, content and material for promotion well in advance – generally a month in advance.
This affords me the time to sit down with Hootsuite and craft out my promotion message and send it out, scheduled to the day and hour that I want to publish it AND on what social media networks. I can correspond tweets and updates to point back to promotional videos, posts or offers that I’ve got on my website, OR point to support material that I’ve created to also promote the event.
At the same time I’m using Hootsuite to get really specific and granular with my social media publishing, Buffer is my go to app to cycle through valuable tips and tricks and motivational and supportive updates to go out to my audience at the same time I’m working on a specific promotion.
Buffer & Hootsuite are two of my most valuable and used tools for my marketing plan. I lurvy lurv them. <3
Next up - let's talk about more online marketing options.