Ten Things You Can Do When Your Art Business is Slow

Managing your art career is a practice in time-management and planning ahead. There are so many aspects of an art career—creating, marketing, selling, organizing works, keeping track of your finances—to […]
On June 30, 2020

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Managing your art career is a practice in time-management and planning ahead.

There are so many aspects of an art career—creating, marketing, selling, organizing works, keeping track of your finances—to name just a few.

Downtime in your art career is the perfect moment to recalibrate, find inspiration, and take care of the nitty-gritty. 

Taking care of tasks during a slow period supports your present and future career. Jump in on your to-do list. With each task you take on in a period of art career slowness, you are boosting your career and preparing for a busier future. 

Create a system for managing your collector contacts

Now is the perfect time to go through your contact list and see who you should be catching up with, reaching out to, or updating about your work.

First things first, make sure that you have all your contacts and their information all in one place. Scan through your contact list for duplicates and missing information. Do you have all of your contact information up to date? If you are missing information, reach out to contacts. Let contacts know about what’s new in your art practice, and ask for their new address, phone number, or other missing information. 

Avoid the need for a mass follow-up in the first place with more regular check-ins. For example, following up with contacts after a sale is a great time to make sure that you have their most up-to-date information.

It’s helpful to not just know the basics about your contacts, like their email addresses, but to be familiar with their personal details. When you interact with your contacts, it’s as much about them as it is about your art. Building personal relationships go beyond basic networking. Remembering important details and being able to interact on a variety of topics allows you to connect with clients and ensures that clients feel a connection to you and your art.

If you are juggling many contacts, consider using a system like Artwork Archive where you can make notes about the last time you interacted with a client and record their personal details. With Artwork Archive you are also able to group your contacts. If you reach out separately to past buyers, workshop attendees, gallerists, or fellow artists, you’ll want to make sure to have separate lists for your various contact groupings.

Send out a newsletter to your audience. 

Now that you have your contacts cleaned up, it’s time to reach out and reconnect with clients and partners with a newsletter.

A good newsletter is an opportunity to not just update, but to engage.

When you draft your newsletter, what are you looking to accomplish with your outreach? If you are looking for feedback for something like workshop themes, include a poll. If you are wanting to showcase new work, make sure to include photos and information about the process of making these works. 

When people buy art they want to feel a connection to you and to the work, you can help your readers build these connections.

Keep it short and sweet. A good newsletter is personal, informative, engaging, and readable.

If you don’t normally send newsletters, experiment! If a newsletter format doesn’t work for you, think about other email outreach ideas. Here are some email outreach templates that can help get you started.

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