Let’s talk about your social media habits. Have you ever found yourself spending 30 or 40 minutes on Facebook without accomplishing anything? I have! So if you want your time and effort on social media to actively promote your art business, you might need to take a more strategic approach. It’s fairly easy but it requires some thought, so let’s take it one step at a time. In this blog, we’ll explore where to post, and the next two blogs in the series will help you decide what to post and when to post.
These days, there are dozens of social media platforms to choose from for art marketing, with new ones appearing on the Internet every month. We can’t possibly engage in them all, so how do you decide which platforms are right for you? The first step is to decide who you’re trying to reach, the second step is to research who is using the various social media platforms, and the last step is to choose the platforms most frequently used by your target audience. Effective fine art marketing through social media is all about connecting with the right people.
So who is your target audience, the people who are most likely to buy the products (originals, reproductions, etc.) or services (workshops, art restoration, etc.) that you’re offering? That could mean more than one group—for instance, collectors and fellow artists—so be sure to identify all of the possibilities. Then try to describe each group as thoroughly as you can, using what marketers call “demographics.” For example, when it comes to your collectors, what is the typical age range of your buyers? Financial status? Gender? If you don’t have any sales history to go on, try to imagine what the answers would be. Then do the same for your other groups.
Next, let’s research the demographics of the typical users of the various social media platforms. A quick Google search of any of them (example: 2015 Facebook user demographics) will give you all the info you need, but make sure it’s current. You'll find that Facebook, Google+, Pinterest, and Twitter might be better if you’re trying to reach an older audience, while Instagram and Snapchat might be the best choices for a younger audience. It’s useful to do this same research for gender and income levels as well.
Another factor to consider—which we’ll talk about in more detail in the next post—is the type of content you think you’re most likely to share. Some social media platforms, such as Facebook, Instagram, and Pinterest (or YouTube and Vimeo for video) are more geared toward visual imagery. And since that’s mostly what we do, you may want to consider choosing at least one platform that is all about images.
One final tip: Whichever social media platforms you decide to use, make sure you have a consistent look to all of them. Use your same profile picture (marketing experts recommend a picture of your face), and the same or similar display images so that you start to present a cohesive message across all social media. And be sure to fill out your profile info in full so that people who don’t know you have the best chance of finding you based on the experiences you’ve had.
So what has your research revealed? I’m going after Facebook and Twitter for now, but I may add Pinterest later. How about you? How many platforms do you think you can reasonably support? And how often do you think we should re-evaluate our art marketing plans? Let’s connect.