Let's keep chatting, shall we? So you've decided to focus on your strongest body of work, you've started to connect with members of the Twitter community with like-minded interests, and now you are ready to build on those relationships!
Answer questions, compliment a blog post or new piece, try and take an interest in what they are talking about. Of course you cannot do this with everyone, but what’s great about Twitter is you can do this quickly with several people each time you log in. And who knows if your interest in them will lead to an interest in you, and your work?
Think about how you build relationships in the real world. It starts with a handshake, the simple questions of "what do you do?" "where are you from?" "where did you go to school?" etc. On Twitter, it's just that simple, too!
I find that a lot of what I post on Twitter are those little moments that are funny...at that moment (like about 1/2 an hour ago when I cut open a bag of green onions, only to realize, upon turning the bag over, it had a zip-lock seal on the other end...sigh) But then other tweeters respond and I can laugh at myself and move on to the next thing!
If you are following people in a field you want to break into, be sure and respond to or re-tweet their interesting posts. For example, if there is a blogger who you would LOVE to feature your work on their blog, pay attention to their current projects and show an interest in what they write.
Not everyone will write you back, but don't fret, and don't take it personally. Sometimes they may mark your tweet and respond to it later, or may remember your name the 2nd or 3rd or 97th time you tweet back to them (remember - there's a fine line between friend and stalker) and then take a moment to really check out who you are and what you do.
Build on Your Success
Don’t be shy! Brag about yourself a little! Did you sell a big piece? Let us know! Did you finally master a new technique? Tell me how! Get into a major juried show? Awesome! I once had a fellow artist tweet to me, “You are always so positive about your art. I can’t do that with my own work!” To which I replied, ”Well if I don’t like it, who will?”
I am a firm believer in "Shameless Self-Promotion". Well, maybe shameless is the wrong word...dilligent? aggressive? Maybe...but seriously! - we need to be our own best advocate for our work! If you are a memebr of a gallery - awesome! Great! Your work should be there. But the gallery owner will not ALWAYS push your work over another artist to a buyer.
I spent a lot of time selling my art directly to buyers IN PERSON - at gallery shows and outdoor art shows as well. I know the questions potential clients will ask, I know what questions to ask them about their needs, I know how to SELL my Art.
Be positive about your work, show that you believe in what you are doing.
And then, when you have a great sale or story...let's hear it! When my work was selected for a new frame collection in Restoration Hardware, I wrote about it - and got additional sales from it - because people who saw the work searched the web for "Restoration Hardware Art" and found my blog post. Had I not said anything...I could not have built on that success.
***If you have any other questions, or some great tips on using Twitter - or a Twitter success story - I hope you share it here in the comments!***
I'd like to introduce you to another favorite Etsy artist, a great example of an Artist at Work! Victoria Webb, also known as FuriousDreams. We have chatted so many times, and share many of the same views on Art and Selling, and I hope you take a moment to visit her amazing shop!