Three Steps to Success as an Artist
1 – Get Found
2 – Get Famous
3 – Get Rich
The internet is awash with “x-easy-steps-to” tutorials that over-promise and under-deliver. This is not one of them, unless you are easily confused by my use of confusing semantics. Success is an elusive goal, to reach it takes effort and dedication. Let’s take that first step to getting found. It is not easy. Nowadays just about everything is done online, so the first step is to get on the internet. Unfortunately there is no such thing as people driving down the internet midway and seeing establishments right and left. You got to be in some place that people frequent to be noticed. In this first installment of this series we will take a look at social media, specifically Facebook.
You most likely have a Facebook account already. That is not quite good enough to build an artistic presence and reputation. No doubt you interact with friends and places. Many of your posts just don’t support the image of an artist, after all, they are just chatter with friends about all sorts of subjects far removed from your art.
Facebook offers “pages” – fan pages where you can show your art and interact with art collectors, other artists, and all interested in your creations. Currently Facebook offers a link at the bottom of the left sidebar to create a “Page”. Here is the top of my “art page”.
With the page you get a simple Facebook address too. Mine is facebook.com/Ludwig.Gallery – Neat, isn’t it. I can link to it from many other places on the internet, but that is getting ahead of our story. You can, of course, choose your cover image and profile picture to make your page uniquely yours. I have chosen a flower rather than the more customary personal portrait to identify my page. Also please note the very prominent “Shop Now” link, we will discuss that in a future article.
Go ahead, set up your own page. Add a few posts with images of your art. Now will people come to admire your work? Nah, nobody will see it. Nobody will come. You got to promote your page. So the next step is to invite your friends to “like” your page. You will find an option to do so in your view of your own page. Once they have done this they will occasionally see a post from this page on their home page. Just a fleeting post among the plethora of stuff that one gets on Facebook. But it is a step in the right direction.
Facebook will be quick to try and make money from you. You will see invitations to “Promote” your post. Sometimes Facebook makes it enticing by offering you credit. For just three bucks they will show your post to a thousand people. Much better than having it show up on just three friend’s feeds, no? No. Nothing much will come from those ads except that you are out the money.
Getting found is hard. You really have to work at it. At least now you have a place showing some of your work. You have to keep up posting. And you have to find ways to direct viewers to your page.
Ask your friends on your regular Facebook page to like your art page and to share your posts on their own timeline so their friends in turn can see and admire your work, and hopefully do likewise. You would really like to go viral that way. To do so you need very compelling, captivating posts.
This was my first small step that I suggest you undertake on your road to success. There are many more, but where will they lead? We have not taken up the details, the definitions of success, “getting found”, “becoming famous”, or “being rich”. Every artist sees these differently. We will take those up in the next article along with the next small steps on our quest to success.
First published in Our Arts Magazine on January 21, 2018