Artist Dread Scott leading a Creative Capital workshop.
The following post is adapted from artist Dread Scott’s upcoming webinar, Creating a Marketing Strategy, which covers all aspects of marketing your work, including defining your goals, developing effective communication tactics, and building your support community. Below are Dread’s tips for getting your crew of supporters together.
Like everything you do as an artist and a person, your marketing strategy should start with stating your goals. What are you trying to achieve with your efforts? The answers to this question could be “cultivate a funder,” “build an online community,” “sell more tickets,” or “announce a project.” While the objectives vary as much as the creative process, the key is to match your tactics with your goals.
Artist and Creative Capital grantee Jen Bervin at work. This image of her is featured on her artist website.
Your website should be completely dedicated to you and your work. Think of it as a studio visit or a reading where you are not present. A visitor to the site should be able to find all of the information they need – including images of your work (in detail if needed), excerpts from your writing, information about your career, a bio and/or statement, and any relevant press or reviews. They should be able to get press releases or printable images, find your contact information, and learn about your upcoming public events and projects. It is a tool to communicate with your audience as well as allow them to communicate with you. It can also be used to promote the work of fellow artists, social causes, or keep people up to date with your process.
A well-designed, functional website is a great promotional tool for both emerging and mid-career artists. On Thursday, June 16th, 2016 at 7pm EST, artist Sue Schaffner presents her “Website, Blog & Email Essentials” webinar, an overview of best practices for your website, blog, and email marketing and communications. In order to teach by example, we’ve included some of our favorite artist websites and note what’s working.
As an artist it’s important to build a path to greater sustainability and self-sufficiency. Our Professional Development Program works to create workshops that serve artists’ needs and help them reach their goals on their own terms.
This summer we are launching the Creative Capital Summer Intensive—a free, four-day professional development workshop for 40 New York City area artists in all disciplines—and we want you to apply. (Deadline: June 27) The Summer Intensive offers a unique opportunity for artists to receive arts-focused professional training in strategic planning, verbal communications, marketing and promotion, web skills, financial management and business.
The Summer Intensive is supported by BAM’s Education & Humanities department with participation by DanceMotion USA℠. The event will be held on August 10-13 at BAM Fisher in Brooklyn, New York.
Due to high demand, eligible participants will be selected through a lottery process. In order to be included in the lottery, artists must complete the online registration form before June 27.
For complete program details, including eligibility requirements and access to the registration form, click here.
Working with several advocates for the decriminalization of sex work, the Center for Artistic Activism took over the controversial sculpture “Perceiving Freedom” in Cape Town. Photo by Steve Lambert.
Interested in launching a socially engaged art campaign? Curious how successful artists have pulled it off? Stephanie Bleyer is an expert in community engagement campaigns and founder of the firm Six Foot Chipmunk, where she helps artists across disciplines create strategic plans, raise funds, and reach and mobilize new audiences. On Thursday June 9th, 2016, she will lead the webinar Producing & Funding Your Community Engagement Campaign, an essential for artists’ projects involving social justice, education, public art, or community building. Adapted from Stephanie’s webinar, the following information pairs best practices with action-oriented case studies.
Steve Lambert and Stephen Duncombe in North Carolina.
Steve Lambert and Stephen Duncombe of The Center For Artistic Activism help artists make political art work. For them artistic activism is more than just a descriptor for certain types of art. It’s more than a tactic. They see it as an “entire approach: a perspective, a practice, a philosophy.” They will be leading a new workshop in Creative Capital’s New York offices on May 23rd, where artists will learn how to use their creative practice to organize communities, speak truth to power, and make more engaging and impactful artworks. We talked to the pair about their work, their critical inspirations, and the artistic activism they see in the world.
Sharon teaching at Chautauqua Institution. Photo by Don Kimes.
Sharon Louden needs no introduction. A successful artist, editor, and advocate for artists, Sharon’s transparent and earnest approach to sustaining professional connections has made her four-part webinar, How to Approach and Engage with the Gatekeepers of the Art World, one of Creative Capital Professional Development Program’s most sought-out offerings. Back by popular demand, Sharon will be leading her series starting May 23rd.
Below you’ll find some tips adapted from Sharon’s course on “effective research” that we and past webinar participants have found useful. If you want to learn more about how to communicate and build relationships with other art world professionals, don’t forget to register for Sharon’s webinar.
An artist at a recent Creative Capital workshop.
Ever wonder how artists get written about in the press? Often artists with representation—a gallery, or an agent—will leave public relations work in someone else’s hands. But artists in every stage of their careers can learn a thing or two about good PR strategies and take their press outreach into their own hands. Next week, our Professional Development Program is producing a brand new workshop in our New York City offices on public relations specifically for artists. We’re bringing in Sascha Freudenheim and Alina Sumajin from PAVE Communications and Consulting to lead PR For Working Artists: Strategies for Success on May 2nd. We spoke to Sascha and Alina about the difference between marketing and PR and how to get your press release to stand out from the inbox slush pile.
Kirby Tepper leading a workshop for Creative Capital’s Professional Development Program.
Kirby Tepper is a man of many talents: actor and educator are just a few of the hats he wears beyond the confines of his day job as a licensed psychotherapist. The same interpersonal expertise that makes him valuable to the clients in his practice also serves to empower his artist peers. Though he particularly enjoys working with artists, Kirby has helped people from many backgrounds, including doctors, writers and lawyers, find a more confident, direct communications style. On May 2, Kirby will be giving a webinar on Effective Negotiation For Artists, where participants will learn how to ask for what they deserve with confidence. We asked him about his theatrical inspirations and the don’ts of artist communication.
A photo Christy took of her name badge and the PDP materials at the workshop in Trenton, NJ.
The Professional Development program has launched a new blog that chronicles New Jersey artists’ growth and process through our Blended Learning Program. Blended Learning is a multi-format course in financial and business management that helps artists establish a secure base upon which to create and grow their work. Thanks to the generous support from the Geraldine R. Dodge Foundation, Creative Capital’s Professional Development Program was able to bring Blended Learning to the artists of two communities in New Jersey—in Trenton and Newark.
We’ve asked them to share their stories throughout their journey—testimonies of what they’ve learned, the questions they still have, the strategies they’re trying out, and the results they’re seeing in their art and in their life. Here’s one of our entries from artist Christy O’Connor, who took part in the Blended Learning workshop in Trenton on April 3, 2016.
Tracie Holder at the Scottish Documentary Institute
Tracie Holder learns how to tell her stories by first telling them to funders. As an award-winning filmmaker, fundraising consultant and engagement campaign specialist currently working with Women Make Movies, Tracie has raised an impressive $2 million for her projects from a mix of government funders, private foundations and individuals. On April 28th she’ll be leading her webinar, Grantwriting For Artists, covering all aspects of compelling and successful grantwriting for artists working in all disciplines. We talked to Tracie about how she got her chops in grantwriting and how artists can incorporate their search for funding into their creative practice.