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Artists Blog Dilemma

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83.3 million artists blogs
which one is yours?

Artists Blog Dilemma

– not a pretty picture. Not as pretty as the pictures that you paint anyway.

The artists blog dilemma simply stated is –

Over 83.3 million artist blogs indexed by Google. Only 10 sites per page show up on a search engine. If you are not on pages 1 -5 what are your chances of ever being seen?

And that is the good news. Now for the rest of the story –

I regularly review artist blogs and find NO comments. Meaning no one is reading your hard work. Or you get the ubiquitous – ‘Nice work.’ All that means is someone is using your blog to promote themselves.

Most pages take forever to load… and I have a really fast internet connection. That’s a whole other newsletter.

It is now 2014 and – Last blog update averages 2011. What’s going on here?

A lot of blogs are really artsy – some with black pages and white print. Looks great when you set it up, but no one psychologically likes black pages with white print. Gallery walls are white or off white… so the paintings stand out. Easy on the eye.

Some blogs only have comments by the blogger… not any one visiting the sites.

Some blogs have only 300 views since 2009. Ouch.

Here’s a rub… some ‘free’ blogs control the flow of interaction…in other words… the blog itself acts as a choke point… so your comments only benefit the host company of the blog site… not the artist or the blog commenter.

404 and you realize the artist has given up the ghost and is no longer maintaining the blog.

And the ‘moderation meal’… you spend so much time moderating… you burp. Because if you leave the comments area unmoderated… all kinds of strange comments with nothing to do with art populate your site.

Or you reach… ‘this site is available for purchase’ Another blog bites the dust.

Your guest book is full of entries from ‘Superman’ or ‘the cat lady.’ Not exactly the demographic you were hoping to reach.

How do you turn this situation around?

Well… what was your objective in putting up your blog?

Was it: to sell your art, to get your name out there, to enable free loaders to cut and paste your artwork into their own albums for free, or were you hoping to ride off into the sunset with your saddle bags full of gold?

I’m willing to bet… you thought you were going to make a killing on the net. But now… reality has set in.

Time to take off the rose colored glasses and call it for what it is…not a pretty picture. Not as pretty as the pictures that you paint anyway.

So… what to do?

The simple answer is… marketing. The complicated answer is … marketing.

Let’s take the complicated answer first. Some will tell you – ‘well, first you buy a list of art buyers – don’t worry about the cost… it’s an investment.’ Hah. Others will tell you – ‘Well, first you buy a great website with all the bells and whistles…don’t worry about the cost…it’s an investment.’ Hah. Others will tell you – ‘You need to get serious…invest in yourself… don’t worry about the cost.’ Hah. Now I could go on… but why beat a dead horse?

Now let’s look at the simple answer of marketing. ‘Marketing is a mind game.’ Ouch!

So… what is going on inside the mind of an art buyer? Some buy for investment. Some buy on impulse. Some buy just because they like the color red. Some buy because the image reminds them of their childhood, a first love, a favorite pet, others prefer to rent an image … you get the picture… it is all over the map. It’s like herding cats. How do you simplify the process?

Well… one way is to let someone else do the marketing for you.

Case in Point… The Saturday Evening Post and Norman Rockwell. Tom McCarvill and Ted DeGrazia. Arthur Everett Austine Jr. and Pablo Picasso. Playboy Magazine and LeRoy Neiman.

Notice… I did not put the artist’s name first. Because the artist was not the engine of their success.

Let me spell it out for you … the simplest way to sell your work is to let those who are committed to do the marketing… do the marketing for you.

The Saturday Evening Post was at one time…one of the most read magazines in the country…with a huge-mungous monthly distribution. All Norman Rockwell had to do was keep producing the kind of work the magazine wanted on it’s covers… and Rockwell became a household name.

Ted DeGrazia loved wine, women and song. It is an open question which brother took the aspirin and negotiated the licensing deals that made DeGrazia the all time leader in art distribution…but one thing is for sure. DeGrazia’s lawyer Tom McCarvill read all contracts with a fine tooth comb before DeGrazia signed any licensing agreements.

Pablo Picasso loved the cubism style… which he borrowed from some African masks. But it was Arthur Everett Austine Jr. who promoted Picasso and along the way Picasso became a household name.

LeRoy Neiman was not the only artist who painted large and with lots of red. But it was his personal relationship with Hugh Hefner and association with Playboy Magazine which presented his artwork in multiple issues that eventually made Neiman a household name.

There is a great line in the movie – ‘The Wolf of Wallstreet.’ “Sell me this pencil.”

This line comes in about 15 minutes into the movie and it reappears in a scene at the end of the movie.

It is the core of the movie… everything else in the movie is salad… entertaining enough to keep you watching. But this line is what the movie is all about.

This line is how all the brokers made their money, bought their fancy cars, ate shrimp and lived large.

The closing scene represents most artists… sitting in the audience, 30 rows deep and 20 seats wide, trying to think of what to do or say…to “sell me this pencil.”

And the boiler plate that comes out of their mouths represents what they don’t know about marketing. It is painful to watch.

In other words… most artists need to find someone… who knows how to…”sell me this pencil.”

Most artists need to find someone who knows how to stand the 83.3 million artists blogs on it’s head.

Most artists need to find someone who knows how to really reach the movers and shakers in the art world…and the art buying public.

Most artists need to find someone who regularly reaches out to the art buying public.

Why… because active reaching out to the art buying public is what gets the artist’s name into the memory banks of the art buying public.

If the art buying public does not recognize your name… when they see it in print… your name might as well be ‘whatshisname.’

Most artists don’t want to spend the 50-80 hours per week that it takes to actively reach out to the art buying public.

Well… you wouldn’t have any time or energy left over to create your work. So that’s understandable. And this activity is not the romantic or the exciting side of the art career. It is just plain work. It is a job. Ouch!

Reaching out actively and regularly to the art buying public is job with call backs, follow-ups, time-tables and dead-lines.

And besides most artists already work 40+ hours at some other job(s) to pay the bills. That’s a circle that cannot be squared.

So what is the artist to do… who is not a marketing guru, whose blog is not getting any traffic, whose time is at a premium?

Let’s keep it simple.

Well… without being too obvious… hitch your wagon to Focus Point Shape International Online Art Gallery and give yourself a fighting chance… to become a household name. Just a suggestion to the wise.