Maybe like me, you wondered “Is social media X better than social media Y?”, “how many followers do I need to make a living?” or “Am I good enough?”, “Is a website better than an Artstation or Instagram?”
Let’s take a step back: Notice anything in particular with these questions?
YES! They’re self centered. (I’m sure you guessed it).
Because we focus on ourselves, we disconnect from the world, we create our own reality. One where skills deserve to be rewarded. One where we have control over it.
I’ve spent the last couple of years digging into these questions. Instead of listening to people painting for a living, I turned toward people selling for a living: Marketers.
From the marketing standpoint, selling is not about them, it’s about the audience.
How can their product best help the audience to improve their lives?
This is the first principle. It is not ourselves versus the world. We can't expect outsiders to the craft to understand insider's knowledge. Make people understand the way we work, the way we should get paid, what quality to expect.
Does your mechanic get mad at you for not understanding how your car works?
As artists, we’re part of the world, our art connects us to it. Instead, we can learn from marketers and look to understand our audience. Who they are, why do they follow us? Why do they buy from us or hire us?
When it comes to selling, marketers' principles are different from the advice we get in the art field. Because they specialize.
Our specialization doesn’t come even close to theirs when it comes to selling stuff. We paint, they sell.
What can help us?
Here are 3 more interviews you might enjoy :
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We draw. We can help people connect, make them feel special, help them escape reality. We can help projects get funded, raise awareness on social issues or ease the workload on game productions. Art can decorate a home, be used as investment and tax deductible assets (like the Art market).
Truth is, it’s fucking hard to deal with the anxiety beforehand. You might forget what you wanted to say, lose track of the discussion, let your voice shake. Even after a year I’m still not there and I mess up All. The. Time. Every freaking interview! But you know what? It’s ok.