November 15, 2016
6 Best Ways To Support Your Favorite Artists
by Corrina Thurston
Artists, craftspeople, musicians, and those who are starting and running ANY sort of business, need help. Business of any kind is a numbers game, and if we don’t get our products or services in front of enough faces and get support from our communities, we will fail.
There’s a reason well over 50% of businesses fail in the first 5 years.
Do you know someone (like me!) who is starting or running a creative small business, and wonder what you can do to show your support or help them? Here’s 6 simple things that can help support your favorite artists.
1.) Buy Their Work
This one is obvious, the best way to support an artist is to buy their work.
If you have the means to buy something from your artist friend, even if it’s just a pack of greeting cards, it helps! Every purchase helps, probably more than you know, especially in the beginning few years of a business.
Sometimes I sell individual greeting cards for $3.50. You can get a keychain or small pair of earrings for only $12. And while these are small sales that some people might think don’t do much, they add up and can be extremely helpful.
If you have the means to buy larger items, like prints, even better! Whether you’re buying something for yourself or for a friend, any and all sales are appreciated by the small business entrepreneur.
2.) Share Their Work
Platforms like email and social media have made the sharing of things like artwork and products so much easier. See something you like that your favorite artist has posted on a site like Facebook? Share it!
Like I said before, the more eyes on our work the better, so the more people who are willing to share our work, the better.
Even though in most cases a share has a link back to the artist whose work your sharing, like with Facebook, don’t forget to put that artist’s name in your own description and why you’re sharing it. Just love that particular drawing and thought it was great? Say so in your post! Think other people might like a product for holiday present ideas? Mention that!
Your share might not directly lead to any more sales for the artist, but you never know! When you hit that button it might get in front of the eyes of someone who has been searching for just that type of product or service! And in that case, you’re helping not only the artist, but the person who’s interested as well.
3.) Talk About Their Work
Anyone who runs a business knows how vital word-of-mouth can be. Referrals are the easiest and best way for a business to get more clients, but it’s also something we don’t have much control over. You do!
If you’re in a situation to bring up something about your favorite artists, that’s a great way to support them. Getting the word out about someone’s work is essential to growing that business.
I am always blown away when a fan of mine talks about me and my work to their friends. For example, I went to the doctor a few weeks ago and when I told the nurse my name, she recognized it. Her friend had bought a print from one of the local retailers who sells my work and had gushed about it so much that this nurse knew exactly who I was and what my work was like even though we’d never met.
This happens frequently at craft shows and at random places, and it always surprises me. Thank you so much to everyone who talks about my work!
4.) Leave A Review Or Testimonial
Have you bought something from your favorite artist in the past? Leave a review or give them a testimonial!
People want to buy things from people they know and trust, so for you to leave a testimonial for the quality and all around awesomeness of an artist’s work, others will read it and feel more comfortable buying from them. I read testimonials and reviews all the time, and it certainly sways my opinion and helps me decide if I’m going to buy something or not.
5.) Contact Them
Don’t see a place to leave a testimonial? Contact the artist directly!
Can’t buy anything right now, but want to show your support? Contact the artist!
Contacting the artist directly and telling them how much you like their work, or that they’re inspirational to you, or to ask a question, is a great way to support an artist. We don’t just need people to buy our work, we need to feel wanted! We need to know that people like what we do and that they think it’s important we keep creating.
Being a creative entrepreneur can be a lonely job sometimes. It’s an emotional roller-coaster, and a much more challenging job than it might seem. But when people reach out and tell me my work or my story has touched them in some way, it’s like a little injection of hope that what I’m doing is important and that I need to keep doing it. When I hear from a happy customer, I’m thrilled! There’s nothing that can lift my spirit and help motivate my muse more than a friendly word from a client or fan.
6.) Send Them A Heads Up About Opportunities
Another way to support an artist is to send them a message when you see some sort of opportunity that might benefit them. If you see a call-to-artists for a gallery that has a theme your artist is known for, send it to them to make sure they see it. They may not follow through for one reason or another, but at least they’ll know it’s there.
I can’t count the number of times I’ve seen a publication or a gallery show that I felt like my artwork would have been great for, if only I had known about it in advance! There’s a lot of opportunities that are missed because we’re too busy creating, or we are marketing, or don’t happen to look in the right place at the right time. So help an artist out! Send us those opportunities you see that we might be interested in.
Know more ways to help support your favorite creative entrepreneurs? Let us know in the comments!