Should artists pay for advertising? Generally my answer is no.
Why? Because most artists don’t have the budget and there are more effective ways that are either free of relatively low cost.
Most of my business comes from the following sources and generally in this order:
With the exception of relatively low overhead for my Ecommerce site, each of the marketing mechanisms listed above are free and I would venture to say they are more credible.
Then how do get referrals you ask. Well… you simply ask. How?
Here’s an example:
“I’m so glad that you like my work. You know, I don’t advertise. Most of my business comes by way of referrals from people just like you. Can you think of one or two people to introduce me to who would also enjoy my work?” Then stop talking. This is key. Don’t be nervous and keep talking. Just let them say yes or no.
When they mention a name, say something like. “What would be the best way for us to meet?” They might say, “They’ll be at my party on Friday. Why don’t you come?” Or “I’ll introduce you via email.”
Your objective is to get to meet that referral in person. Not sell them. Just meet them.
1. Ask for one or two referrals
2. Ask how and when the introductions can best be made
3. Follow up and get some face time with the referral
Asking is free. And it’s simple. Just follow 1,2,3.