What you gain: Overcome artistic rejection and build digital presence
Estimated time to read: 15 minutes
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Artistic rejection and low sales
First of all, all artists and creatives get rejected (like all the time). Cold hard facts. Noone gets standing ovations and praise every time they post a new design or artwork. When starting a creative business, the feelings of rejection will most certainly knock on the door. In this post, you’ll find ways to handle artistic rejection get tips on how to build a digital presence that over time turns into sales.
When moving from hobbyist to a professional the way you look at your art will in most cases shift. You don’t make art just for yourself and your amusement, but to earn an income. Suddenly you look at your competition and their “stories of success.” When starting out sales are often slow as it takes time to build a reputation, cohesive product line and find your target audience. It’s important to remember that Rome was not built in a day (for most of us at least).
Target audience and brand recognition
First of all, low sales and artistic rejection are often due to showing your art to the wrong crowd or in the wrong arena. Low sales are not necessarily a sign of bad products; you need to remember this. When I first started my business, I struggled a lot with the feeling of artistic rejection due to low sales. I found it hard to sell my designs; wherever I turned, I felt rejected and thought my art was not as good as my competition.
My initial strategy was to add more designs to my Etsy shop desperately, work harder on SEO and more social media (you get it). When this was not working out, I was hit by thoughts that my art was not good enough. Everywhere I looked, designers and artists were selling their designs like hot-cakes. Just not me. Or, that was what I thought. I think I got caught up in the Pinterest style “I made a million dollars on Etsy in my first month” kind of swamp. Keep in mind; there is seldom a fast and quick way of making a million dollars in one month. The thing is, with growing experience I learned that many of us start out slow.
Keep track of your conversion rate
The thing that made my sales slow was not my art in itself, but my lack of knowledge about how significant digital presence was for conversion rates. The conversion rate represents the number of people seeing your products divided by the number buying it. A “normal” conversion rate for e-commerce is between 1-4%. To make 1-4 sales, you have to attract 100 people or more to your listing. It’s a no-brainer you need some traffic to be able to get sales! I found my statistics here. It takes time to grow traffic like this, and there are no quick solutions just hard work and a smart and time-efficient strategy.
You need to keep a close eye to your conversion rate. If you have a low conversion, you might need to consider changing your strategy accordingly. Are you sure you show the right stuff to the right people? Do you need to change keywords or hashtags to attract the right folks? Showing nursery art for teens or modern abstracts to someone in search of kawaii clipart will not turn into many sales. Are you with me?
Digital presence is critical for creative online businesses
Low digital presence can cause low sales and the feeling of artistic rejection. You need to start building your digital presence right from the start. Make it a priority – the sooner, the better. If your target audience comes across your work, you are more likely to get a sale. Don’t let them get away!
Tools to build your digital presence
First of all, you need to choose one or two social platforms you think your potential customers might love interacting on. Don’t go over-board and do all social media platforms at once. You get burned out very quickly. You need to have the energy to work your magic too – creating fantastic art and products!
I use Instagram, my blog, and Pinterest to build my digital presence. Follow your analytics and prioritize the platform(s) that generate converting traffic (and you love spending time on). Be sure to use the business account as they often provide you with analytics (depending on the platform). You need to follow your traffic for some time to be able to notice trends.
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Build your digital presence with social media apps
A solution for low sales and finding your target audience is building your digital presence. I use two apps to nurture my digital presence. For Pinterest I use Tailwind, and for Instagram I use Planoly.
Tailwind helps you schedule pins, and you can also share your Instagram posts. The Tailwind Tribes are an effective way getting your pins seen. When I started to use Tailwind Tribes, my Pinterest took off. I schedule 15-20 pins a day. Pinning from your Tribes make scheduling very fast and easy! I do some manual pinning as well if I have time. I don’t strive to have millions of followers, just the right ones. This approach seems to work very well, at least for me. If you like to try Tailwind you can use this link to get $15 off the pro plan.
I use Planoly to schedule my Instagram posts. I strive for one post every working day. Using schedulers are very good to handle social media stress. I use the free version of Planoly, but there are handy features for those who want to sell their artworks or designs directly on Instagram. You can get a “buy button” with Planoly in the paid version.
How to create the foundations of your digital presence
You need to create a coherent media kit to build your brand reputation on social media platforms. On the blog Jules Design you can get practical tips on how to plan and make your digital presence. She shows many digital channels you can use from the start. If you want to learn more go and read her post here!
Please let me know all your tips and tricks on how to handle artistic rejection and how to get sales blooming! Post a comment below, love to hear your take on this.
See you soon!