Want to know social media marketing tactics for creative entrepreneurs?
Wonder how to use social media to promote your work?
Have you ever thought about how creative entrepreneurs such as photographers, designers, artists, and others got successful using social media, and others…
…well, nobody even knows about them.
Your work may be good, however, if you’re not marketing it and sharing it, how people will know what you have something to offer them?
To succeed in business, you have to do both: creating and promoting.
Artists create a lot of visual content. So, let people see your work.
There are often two things, which stop creative people from showing their work on social media fear of critique and not knowing where to start.
When someone critiques your work, ask yourself whether it can help you to improve. If no, then move on. It is your point of view.
Still, social media marketing needs the effort to make it works well for you. Everyone starts from the first follower, but just some create a crowd.
What is the Secret of Social Media Marketing for Creative Entrepreneurs?
To find it out, I asked social media stars a question:
How to market yourself and a creative business through social media?
Here are 11 insights, which I’ve got about social media marketing for creative entrepreneurs. Get the Infographic at the end.
Gary Arndt – Photographer
The biggest thing is to be very consistent in your posting. I’ve posted a daily photo to my website every day for over 8 years. Consistency drives traffic and a following, and it also makes you a better photographer.
Tamara Lackey – Photographer
I remember hearing early on that you want to try to deliver content that interests as many people as possible. But I personally have found that experience to be pretty lacking in authenticity and, thus, less fulfilling.
There can be a perception of social media as shallow and overly time-consuming, but I think you create your own experience in that regard. I care deeply about several topics, and I share my passion for them rather often. I showcase my photography and my focus on what I believe truly matters in as transparent a way as possible.
Since I am fortunate enough to love the work I do, I share it with that same enthusiasm. And even though I am often sharing imagery along with additional information about how something what shot – the gear used, the settings, etc.
I also spend just as much time on expressing why I believe something matters, stands apart, or is worth my audience’s care and attention.
I believe that is why I attract the right clients for my work, ones who also care about similar things. And they care so much that they place a high value on my work accordingly.
So, in that regard, by simply communicating and sharing with authenticity and transparency – which, honestly, is much easier to do – I am able to connect with clients who truly value that.
Pei Ketron – Photographer
Focus on creating and sharing the type of content you enjoy and feel passionate about because that will be evident to your audience.
Potential future clients will want to hire you to do the type of work they already know you’re good at, which happens to be the work you already love.
Lindsay Adler – Photographer
A great way to build community is to reach out and ask for the opinion of your audience.
People want to be heard and want to feel their opinions are valued.
For example, when I am stuck selecting between two images I’m happy to get the opinions of my followers to help guide that decision.
I try to avoid having a social media feed where I only talk AT my audience instead of talking WITH them. Make it a conversation and value their end of the discussion!
Jim Harmer – Photographer
The most important decision I made with Improve Photography was to focus on one social network at a time, and throw everything I had at that network.
I focused on Facebook from the beginning 7 years ago. Every single article I wrote had links to join our Facebook community, every email I sent out had “calls to action” to join our Facebook page, every commenter on our Facebook page got a response, etc.
I went absolutely crazy on Facebook for over two years.
The results? We have one of the largest Facebook communities for photographers anywhere on the web, with over 600,000 fans, and I didn’t spend a dime on advertising it.
I’ve done the same thing with each social network we try to move to after the success with our Facebook page.
We successfully moved our Facebook audience to our email list once our Facebook page hit 400,000. We released a podcast and had a smashing success because we had an established audience already. Then we moved to Pinterest and got a huge following there too.
Now, we’re attacking Youtube and pushing the audience we have over to that platform and growing there. We are releasing a new video every single day, and we’re now growing our Youtube subscriber list by over 2,000 new subscribers each month.
Follow Improve Photography on Youtube for our very popular trip videos where we take you on location to shoot with the pros at Improve Photography.
Jacob Cass – Graphic Designer
Providing value is the key to success on social media and depending on your goals and niche, this can often come by sharing resources, links, articles, and advice, not just from your own site(s), but from all around the web.
Also, automating social media works too, so you can be active in all time zones.
Danielle Krysa – Writer/Curator
The main rule I follow for social media is that I only post things I would want to see/read myself… things that excite me, move me, and truly interest me.
People can smell a sales pitch a mile away, so be authentic and genuine. Always.
Kirsty Elson – Artist
When I started my Facebook page it was easier to be ‘seen’! These days it’s no so easy! I think over time I’ve realized it’s quality and not quantity (that is, don’t post if you haven’t got something interesting to show or say!).
I think it’s important to show your personality. I think customers are more likely to spend money on your product if they think they know you! Also always be professional and don’t be negative about stuff – people don’t like it!
Marc Allante – Artist
For me, the most important aspect of promoting my social media pages has been consistency and a professional approach.
I try to post at least once a day, sharing parts of the process and development of each piece and try to encourage participation with my audience.
The more people are liking, commenting, and sharing, the further each artwork goes and is exposed to a wider audience.
I also recently found that videos are a very effective tool to reach a wide audience as they are more often shared than pictures on social media.
Esra Røise – Illustrator
Social media has been a tremendous help in getting my work exposure.
Before I even had a proper web page, back in 2005, I used MySpace to upload my works, and it was really from there that it started being spread around and snowballed into real jobs.
In later years, social platforms like Facebook, and Instagram has taken over, and it has become an extra element to my online portfolio.
It is a far more personal way of connecting to your audience (this obviously has its up-and-downsides since there is no real filter standing between you and your audience), but generally, I would say that it has been an asset to the way I work, and I have definitely booked new jobs via social media.
I like that Instagram can provide a little more intimate approach to my world that my web page. It is like a little peek “behind-the-scenes” and a place where I can try out things and test it before I decide whether to put it in my “official portfolio” or not. It is also a cool way of sharing your process.
Although I mainly focus on my works on social media, I also try to share a little from my actual life and about who I am, which I personally appreciate when following other artists.
Aaron Favaloro – Illustrator
Enjoy what you do as there will be ups and downs so passion will help you ride out the bad days.
Having a target market in mind prior to posting always helps when trying to bring cohesion to your page.
Be prepared to loose followers when shifting your goals / focus. Easier to loose a few followers than to become stale and stagnant.
Have someone review posts prior to posting, someone who can offer you another viewpoint (choose someone you trust) you don’t want your vision diluted by committee. Designing by Committees is the fastest way to dilute brand and creativity.
Social media marketing can seem overwhelming. It’s not, but it will take some time to see the result.
Take it easy, choose the platform you like, and start there. Create your art and do what you can to share it.
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What is your experience with social media marketing for creative entrepreneurs? Share it in the comments; I would love to hear that. And let me know if you have any questions.
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Marina Barayeva is an international speaker and coach who helps women entrepreneurs become recognized experts and confidently sell their services. She is also a TEDx speaker, has presented to audiences in Asia and North America, and has been featured in such media as ArtPeople, CCTV, China Radio International, and others.