Promoting Yourself is Not a Crime

Are you afraid to promote yourself?

It’s not considered cool for some reason.

That whole thing about being humble is a virtue.

Well, I am here to tell you as so many others have probably already done, that if you don’t promote yourself no one will find you. You don’t have to do it blatantly and boastfully, however, you do have to put yourself out there and be proud of who you are and what you do.

The myth of instant success goes something like this. You build this fantastic product, sculpture, tool, the art that you create, and someone of “value” sees it and delights in it and suddenly everyone is delighting in it and you become rich and famous…

Wouldn’t that be nice? You will more likely find a million dollars in your mailbox before this happens.

So what do you do? Today in this global economy where your audience is now millions of people around the globe rather than the few thousand who live in your town, you become acquainted with technology. It is your friend. Don’t get me wrong one on one connection is still my favorite, getting to know, in person, your audience is the best way to make friends, fans, customers. However, if the people you know are not the people who are likely to use your product or love your style of art, it doesn’t mean that you have to move. Your audience is just a few clicks away across the web.

It can be daunting to figure out how to connect with your audience, especially for people who did not grow up with a computer at their fingertips from the day they were born, but I am here to tell you that it can be done. I can also tell you that you don’t have to be on every single social media channel and you don’t have to spend all your time on the computer. Remember learning how to walk? Baby steps are the key. There are many online resources as well as community resources to help you find your way. There are also services, consultants, agents, that are happy to do a good deal of it for you.

However, you have to understand that if your goal is to put your art in other people’s hands, you have to make the effort to get it out there.

If you think it’s impossible, I am here to tell you that it is not.

When I first started trying to sell my art, I was so terribly sure that I would fail and of course, I did. I would get myself all dressed up, pack up my samples and drive to a gift shop or gallery I hoped would buy. Often I would just sit in the car in front of the store trying to syke myself up to go in. Sometimes I would just leave, never making it in the door and sometimes I would make it in and I would say something like “ Any chance you want to buy some of these pictures to put in your store?” The owners, of course, would say “no thanks” because there was no connection, no reason to buy, they didn’t even know what I had!

It took me awhile to figure it out, one of the things I did was start selling in farmers markets, The more I sold, the more it built up my confidence and I realized that not everyone was my customer and the more I connected with those who were, the less I felt the need to try to sell to everyone.

The internet is like that, sort of. You need to do some research to find the people who will love what you do and then you connect with them, and there are enough of those out there to keep you busy producing your product.

So the moral of this story is, marketing is almost as important and creating. The success of the one does not happen without the other. It is up to you to find your marketing style just as you found your creating style.

You can do it, I know you can.