I get asked all the time about when and how I started my business. By all the time, I mean weekly, by either people I know or people who follow me on my socials. People often question how long I’ve actually been painting and selling my art and want to know exactly how I hit the ground running,
The truth is, I have been only selling art now for 6 months. I’ve always painted, but not in a legitimate ‘artist’ kind of way. I luanched my Instagram page on May 6, 2020, slowly followed by Facebook and I haven’t looked back.
Instagram for Business was a new learning curve for me. I had only ever really used it to follow teaching accounts for ideas to use in my classroom. So the reality was, I needed to learn really quick if I was going to take myself seriously.
Fast forward to now and I have taught myself an incredible amount. It is amazing how driven you can be when you set your mind to doing something just for yourself.
Keep reading for my 5 hot tips that I recommend for starting a creative (or any really) business using soical media.
TIP ONE – Take yourself seriously
I knew I wanted this to work. It had to if I was going to make a change professionally and continue to support my family. I knew I had the creative ability and the drive, but it needed a little polishing.
So, I worked on it every day. For 2 months, every single day, I picked up a paint brush. It was equally therapeutic and professional development. The benefit of this was that I built on my skills as at a rapid rate and started to find my style. I developed greater confidence in the products I was producing and in turn, started to consider myself a legitimate artist.
TIP TWO – Take loads of quality photos
Thank goodness for iPhone technology! A quality camera at your fingertips at any given moment. I documented everything. My set up and workspace, my work in progress from many angles, my finished work and also dare I say it, shameless selfies.
I googled how to take photos on my iPhone to learn loads of tips regarding quality natural lighting, angles and how to edit my photos to make them look professional. In particular – I got really good at making sure my artworks were squared by using the built-in edit tools.
Then I shared them. Lots.
TIP THREE – Learn about creating content
To start with, I was showing up, but I was stabbing in the dark! While I didn’t have any trouble finding content, I did however find it time consuming and ineffective. I soon knew I needed to work out a marketing strategy that was sustainable and effective.
Insert IGNITE YOUR INSTAGRAM. This was a serious game changer for me. The founder and editor or Oak Magazine, Kimberley Furness took me on a journey of pure genius. In this self paced course designed to help you learn what you can do in order to start, maintain and grow your marketing presence. It is here that I learnt about scheduling, hashtags, geotags and advice with useful apps. I cannot recommend it highly enough. @oakmagazineau
Another Queen you need to follow is Amy from Mountain Marketing. It is through following her avidly on Insta and joining her masterclasses that I continued to learn more about pillars of content and content mapping to build revenue and a loyal customer base. She also gave me the confidence to show up in my stories and chat. @marketing_with_amy
TIP FOUR – Know your audience
Once you have enough people following your page, Instagram and Facebook will provide you with Insights and Analytics. This data is a powerful tool to help you know the demographic of your followers including things like your audiences age, where they live and what time of day they are online.
Once you’ve got this, it will help you to know how to speak to your audience and what time of day is best to post to get the most attention. Don’t forget to keep checking back as you get more followers and adjust accordingly.
For me, I know my audience are 98% women aged between 25 and 45 who are online mainly at 9PM.
TIP FIVE – Be Authentic
I cannot stress enough the importance of being yourself. At first you feel like a real goof! Talking to your phone and taking photos of yourself. But think of it this way…. how is anyone supposed to take you seriously if they don’t know who you are? The key is to build a relatable relationship so that people feel more comfortable doing business with you.
The easiest way to do this is to simply be yourself. This way you stay consistent and you don’t have to overthink your approach.
I encourage you to take inspiration from other pages you follow. Show up in a similar way – take notes. Just be mindful that you are making things your own. There is nothing worse than having someone playing copycat to your every move. Not only is this not being authentically yourself, it’s not terribly flattering or positive for the other party. Just. Be. You.
Wow! Breaking that down to only 5 things was tough! I could have easily rattled off another 5-10 things that I have learnt and applied along the way, but that can wait for another blog post.
So in the meantime, I encourage you to have a go at working on one or two or five of my tips. Drop me a message and let me know how you’re going and of course, ask me any questions you’d love to know more about.
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