The Art of Throwing an Artistic Marketing Event

As an independent artist, you have to wear a variety of hats to find long-term success. That includes introducing yourself to the world of marketing. Traditional marketing methods like social media, newsletters, and online portfolios are all great for getting your name and work out there, and even connecting with your target audience. But, nothing beats meeting art lovers who might be interested in your work in person.

One of the best ways to do that is by hosting artistic marketing events where you can showcase your work and make lucrative sales opportunities.

Hosting events not only gives you the opportunity to sell your work, but to develop healthy relationships with potential buyers, which can create loyal customers for years to come.

It doesn’t have to take a lot of time or cause extra stress to host an artistic marketing event. Marketing this way will help the longevity of your business. But, if you’re not sure how to get started, we’ve got several tips that can help.

Why Art Shows Are Important

Even in this tech-forward, highly digital world, in-person art shows remain just as important as ever. Hosting events allows you to show off your work with pride, and explain what each piece is about. You can give your personal stories and perspectives that could sway a potential customer who might not have understood the work beforehand.

People are also often likely to purchase art in person. When they’re able to see a piece in front of them and look at it without pressure, they can develop an emotional connection. They can see how it might fit in their home or office. Plus, when you’re there to explain your motive behind the piece, it can further their emotional investment and create a lifelong appreciation for your work.

The Art of Connecting

Talk to any marketing expert, and they’ll tell you how important it is to have loyal customers. Because art is so personal, obtaining those customers often comes from fostering relationships with them. Marketing events are a fantastic way to network with those who are passionate about the art world and ready to open their eyes and minds to something new.

Not only can you meet people who will be interested in purchasing your work, but you could end up meeting those with influence and power in the industry. They might be able to display your work in bigger galleries or help you with your marketing strategy on a larger scale. You can learn a lot from the right people, and they can help you find greater success along the way, all because you put yourself, and your work, out there in person.

When you’re an independent artist, selling your pieces is essential for continued success. If your work doesn’t sell, you’re going to experience financial issues, which can lead to a variety of mental health issues, including:

  • Stress;
  • Anxiety;
  • Depression;
  • Tension with friends and family.

One of the best ways to maintain consistency and success with your work is to keep networking. Forming relationships with customers and people interested in your art will help to ensure you have consistent buyers and fans. When you know your work will sell among your loyal followers, you’ll have the freedom to create the kind of art you’re passionate about without feeling so much pressure.

Throwing a Great Event

Hosting an event to display your work is about more than just hanging a few pieces in a gallery and hoping people show up. A great artist doesn’t necessarily create pieces for other people. They create art that speaks to them. But, if you can market yourself and your work in ways that can resonate with others, you’ll be able to draw in more guests to your events, and eventually make more sales.

Don’t be afraid to have fun and let your creativity shine when it comes to hosting a marketing event. Make sure you have the basics covered to keep people entertained and satisfied, including elements like:

  • Hor’doeuvres
  • Live music
  • Decorations
  • Multiple art prints

You should also consider serving wine at your events. It adds a touch of formality while allowing people to sip and stroll while they look over your work. Make sure you’re using the right serving glasses for the type of wine you choose. For example, flutes are typically used for sparkling wines – a great option if you’re celebrating the release of new work. But, if you want something bolder like a red wine, choose a glass with a wider bowl and rim.

Finally, a successful art show needs to have the right venue to fit the style of your work. Once you have the perfect place set up, get the word out well in advance. Send out newsletters via email. Mail postcards. Post the event all over your social media platforms.

Budget Marketing Events

Marketing events can be an expensive process, and not every artist has a large budget to do so. Here are some different tips that you can use to host your marketing event on a budget:

  • Team up with other artists: Recognize your marketing event doesn’t have to just be about you. If you are part of an artist collective, know other artists who work in your medium, or know other artists looking to promote your work, look at hosting your event together.
  • Opt for potluck over catering: If you want to have food for your event, opt to prepare your own or have a potluck style catering with other artists.
  • Craft a different kind of event: A marketing event doesn’t just have to be a show of your most recent work. Consider giving an artist process talk, hosting a teaching event, or another type of event that would translate well to an area outside of an artist gallery. You can then offer to host your event at non-profits, local libraries, or public schools to get the word out.
  • Apply for assistance: Look into grants from local, state or national level to help fund your event.

If you’re willing to put on your marketing hat from time to time, you can find lasting, continued success as an artist while enjoying the benefit of personally connecting with your fans and buyers.

Katie Brenneman is a frequent contributor to the Light Space & Time Online Art Gallery blog. She writes about a variety of topics including art marketing advice for artists. Visit her X profile to learn more about her.

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