Creatives and Business is all about helping you build a successful art business, arts or cultural organization or other creative business. I have put together some great resources on this site to help you sell more art, improve membership and attendance, and better manage the business side of things. I invite you to check it out and share with your creative friends. Best of Luck! – Neil McKenzie
Next to creating your art, the most important function in your art business is marketing. If you are not concerned about marketing then you are more likely just pursuing your passion or engaging in a hobby. If you are looking to grow your brand, expand your markets and make money, then marketing should be on your list of business skills to master.
What is marketing?
There are a lot of ways to look at a subject or concept and marketing is no different. People confuse marketing with sales or marketing with advertising. Marketing is a broad concept that encompasses much more.
According to the American Marketing Association, “Marketing is the activity, set of institutions, and processes for creating, communicating, delivering, and exchanging offerings that have value for customers, clients, partners, and society at large “ While this is certainly a comprehensive definition what does it really mean?
The Four P’s of marketing
If you have been following the series of articles on the basics of Art Marketing you already know that a traditional way to describe marketing is called the Four P’s. The Four P’s are: Product, Price, Place (Distribution) and Promotion. In this article we will take a look at the Product part of this marketing model and answer the question – “What are you selling?”
My Artrepreneurship students at the Center for Innovation at Metropolitan State University of Denver are required to prepare their Product List as one of the first steps in developing their business and marketing plans. At first glance this seems easy, but trust me, it will require some thinking and examination into what products you make, what they are used for and who the end user is. The process usually goes something like this:
If you sell your art you are in business! Whether you are just selling your art as a hobby, to make extra income or you are going all out in your art business you need to learn about business. More than likely you went to art school and not business school but don’t worry, the learning about business is not out of your reach. One of the things I have found in teaching business to hundreds of students is that those with an art background did not have a problem “getting it” and in many respects excel because of their creative talents.
Hopefully since you are reading this blog I probably don’t have to convince you that business skills are an important part of any creative career whether you are in business for yourself or you work for someone. The business world has changed and many of the things that have worked in the past may be less effective or not effective at all. Having a good grasp on how business works will help ensure the success of your creative enterprise or make you more valuable to your employer.