In the last post in our creative series we spoke of the need for a business plan, now we need customers. In our latest post, we talk about how to get customers for your creative business.
While your business plan generally outlines your business’s future, a stand-alone marketing plan focuses specifically on creating opportunities, and sales in more detail. On just that one function how to get people knowing your business and building an audience. Whatever venture you do you will need customers, so first you will need fans and you create fans by generating many opportunities for people to view your work. You should also know that fans come in many shapes and sizes:
Admirers – These are people who simply like your work and may never be in a position to make a purchase, but they will support it.
Creative community fans – Here are people in a position to help progress your career, e.g., media, curators, Radio DJ’s, Journalists, major collectors, or other artists.
Future customers – These start off as fans, but at some point will invest in your work. It could be in 6 months’ time, it could be 2 years, but they have already committed in their own minds to buying your work at some point in the future.
Actual customers – Obviously, customers are just people who make such a connection with your work that they are willing to invest in it. In the creative industries, in the case of art, they are known as collectors. No matter what type of fan a person is, they all have to start at the same place seeing your work via the opportunities you have created.
Do not stop creating opportunities for your creative start-up business or it will simply die away. Creating new, ongoing opportunities may be the single most important thing you can do, other than creating the work itself.
Here are some examples;
Gave away business cards
Hold an open studio day, album listening session, pop up fashion show
Book exhibition space at a festival
Commission an online video documentary of your creative start-up business
Make relevant Social Media pages to suit your audience