The online art scene is a huge controversy. It goes against everything that’s been pre-established by a very old tradition of selling artwork.
Galleries and reps are no longer needed. Both were once-believed to be money machines. They are now no more than storage space. The internet has become a haven for artists to share and distribute their work in masses. It’s allowed artists to create and represent themselves, and it’s given artists the means to sell their work online.
How does an aspiring artist begin to sell their art online?
There are plenty of techniques for young artists to start selling their work online. But the most important step is to start learning. Figure out what other online businesses are doing, the tools they’re using and study how you can replicate their success.
Let’s start with my website
- I’m using WordPress to manage my content, a Content Management System (CMS)
- I’m using the free HubSpot CRM to handle my outgoing messages and offer a live chat
- I have the Printful integration to print my paintings and ship them on demand
Sure, I went to school for marketing, but I found these tools online by mimic-ing what I saw on other websites. Also the functionality these tools offer at the price point paid is so worth it.
I already have a website, how do I promote my art?
Promoting your art is one of the hardest things. Art is so subjective. You’ll really want to figure out the voice of your brand before you begin anything. Consider asking yourself these questions:
What makes you tick as an artist? My art takes on many forms, from colorful expressionism to contemporary realism, it’s appreciated by a vast audience.
What’s niche does your art speak to? My art speaks to the art collector that enjoys a pop of color
What’s your unfair advantage? My expertise in Digital Marketing and Entrepreneurship puts me at an unfair advantage over other artists starting out
(but that’s why I’m writing this. So you don’t have to waste your time in business school)
What other tools will help me get more involved online?
So this part is totally up to you. From your preferences to your availability to the grit you have to have in order to see things through.
You’ll probably want to consider setting up an e-mail system. I use Hubspot to collect users’ e-mail addresses. I then send out monthly newsletters using MailChimp.
Pinterest is an amazing tool to help boost your Search Engine Optimization. Each photo that links back to your website will give you Authority within search consoles.
Reddit has many forums specific to your niche. I used to paint paintings of characters from a video game called league of legends, and post them to the league of legends subreddit. With consistency, I was able to build an audience and rely less on Reddit to grow.
Another great subreddit is redditgetsdrawn. Users from this community post their personal photos and artists create art inspired from those photos.
Here’s what matters most:
The keyword here is community. Find a community for your artwork and build on top of it. Use tools to help you grow, but don’t rely on them to carry all of the weight. It’s your responsibility to grow your audience. And that can only be done with consistency.
Consistency is where I lack, and it hurts me when my audience is looking for new content. I often fail to deliver.