Your Creative Business Brings You Joy and Sorrow: 10 Tips to Running a Creative Business
Running a creative business brings you both joy and sorrow, highs and lows - right? It feels so good to create and sell something but at the same time, there are those pits of not selling or hearing crickets when the piece missed the mark with your target audience.
The good news is:
- you are not alone in these feelings - they are universal with every single artist I've ever talked with.
- you can download this FREE Art Business Checklist for your "Daily, Weekly, Monthly, Quarterly and Annual Tasks". This task list is a detailed listing of what you should do to create a balanced Art Business that meets all 10 tips below. Grab it here.
Here are the Top 10 Tips to Running A Creative Business
1. Put your focus into one area and become good at it.
In the arts they say to niche down, many artists rebuke this as stifling. And while that is true, it is also true that you need to niche down. When you define a niche, this allows you to:
- focus on what you’re good at
- market your pieces to a narrowed target audience
- offer more value in your specific area of work.
2. Plan where you want your business to go.
If you have a good vision of what you want, this will be very helpful. You can always change your plan as things in life change, but having your plan written down will keep you focused on your goals.
In the Art Business Membership program we have several courses that talk specifically about aligning your life goals with your art business:
- "Planning Mindfully for Creatives"
- Goal Setting
- Defining Subgoals and Tasks
- Templates, Tools and Workbooks
- "Get More Time to Create in Your Studio".
- Gain More Time To Create
- Optimize Your Time
- Create Your Daily, Weekly, Monthly Task Lists
After all, if you don't know where you want to go, how do you know when you've arrived?
3. Do different things.
When you change things up a little bit, people are bound to notice and pay attention to you. Realize that if you only offer the same things as everyone else around you, you won’t stand out in the crowd of businesses. Taking risks gets you noticed.
You are creative, be creative! You know how we often get into the comparison trap? Flip the mindset switch and say "what are they NOT doing, that I can do?", then do it and advertise the heck out of it!
4. Pay attention to the numbers.
You may work in a more creative field but that doesn’t mean you can forget about numbers. You have to ensure that you have a regular cash flow and without an organized way to go through all of the numbers, you’ll never know how successful you are.
In the Art Business Membership program we have several courses that talk specifically about budgeting and measuring your goals:
- Budgeting for Artists:
- What and Why of Budgeting,
- eBook and Workbook,
- Budget Bingo and more
- Google Analytics for Artists:
- Create Google Analytics Account and UA Code,
- What, Why and How to Analyze Your Data,
- Where to Find Trends And more
5. Share your ideas to revolutionize.
Talking to others is the key to a successful business. Having a great diversity of ideas can help you to adopt an innovative way of doing things for your business. Collaboration helps you to succeed in this world.
In the Art Business Membership Program, we have several opportunities for you to meet with your fellow creatives. This allows you to network, engage and create connections! Where there is a connection there is creativity.
Coffee & Create: Reserve this time for your artist date with fellow creatives to gather via Zoom for a coffee, chat, and create session.
Tech Talk: Bring your questions about Photoshop, Social Media, Chatbots, Email, and more! You'll learn from other fabulous tech that can solve problems you might not even know you had!
Group Coaching Call: Art Business Members meet with a panel of 3 Artists via Zoom to answer questions.
Lunch and Learn: Bring your lunch and learn with a specific topic from an expert in the field.
Connections, Communication invoke Creativity! Join the Art Business Membership Program today!
6. Have proper protection of your ideas.
You don’t want to ever run into the issue of someone stealing your ideas. Be sure to be able to defend your ideas if you ever do run into this unfortunate issue.
Here are some helpful:
- How to Copyright Artwork: What, Why and How
- Artists Soar Podcast: Copyright: what do you do when someone is stealing your artwork
Your ideas are the essence of what you and your business are, so ensure that you know how to protect yourself including the use of trademarks and/or copyrights as needed.
7. Take a digital approach to your business.
This is one of the many necessary and frustrating things that we do as artists. Talking about our art, sharing it, and then adding the social media part where you are an ant in a coliseum trying to be heard...it can be completely frustrating.
This is another mindset switch to flip. Let's say you have 20 people following you, imagine them all in a single room (like a Facebook Group), that's actually a lot of people to engage with and create meaningful relationships with. Engage with your customers, employees, and suppliers. Learn how to use different social media platforms to help promote your business.
In the Art Business Membership Program, we had Social Media expert Rachel Harchanko provide a discussion "Social Media Overview" and artist Stephanie Weaver provided a discussion on Email Marketing for Artists to aid your efforts in engaging and growing your audience.
Engaging on social media will help you to extend the boundaries of your business and how to appeal to people to support you and your business.
8. Don’t lose hope.
When Chuck Yeager broke the sound barrier in 1947, he said that right before he broke the sound barrier, the plane was shaking, the noise was unbelievable and he debated on whether to abandon the project, but just as he pushed through the barrier it turned quiet, calm and peaceful - pure joy.
Also, did you know that Monet tried to commit suicide at age 28...thank God it didn't work or we might know impressionism!
You might be just seconds away from peace and achieving everything you! Don't give up!
Remember that while you are a creative business and regardless of the type of business, it can take 2-3 years to establish yourself as a profitable business and more to feel as though you are gaining ground.
Don't give up, keep the vision of the life you want to lead in mind.
9. Always strive to improve.
Continuous improvements help to make a business succeed. This includes looking back at things that went wrong and making them better.
In the Art Business Membership Program, we have a Group Coaching Call with 3 fabulous artists with the intention of helping artists go above where they are right now, whether that is a discussion about art or art business - the purpose is always to enable you to move forward towards your goals.
10. Have fun.
You’re supposed to have fun while running a creative business. So often we get focused on the business side, or that feeling like everything we create has to be "Pinterest Perfect" or sale worthy, we forget to have fun! This is exactly why I created the Coffee & Create time, this meetup gives you the permission to play on any project you want!
Experiment and play create new ways of doing things and might just create the breakthrough you need to achieve #5 above to revolutionize!
It’s not easy running your own creative business but when following these tips, hopefully, it can help your business run a little bit easier and if you really want to push forward with your business and gain a community of like-hearted artists, join the Art Business Membership Program today - you won't regret it tomorrow!
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