Making Art Work: Promoting Classes and Events
“Welcome to the Making Art Work Series! Through this accumulating and growing collection of resource articles, we hope to give insight and suggestions to artists in their journey to becoming their most successful creative selves! These articles also serve as key content for our Grumbacher Art Program, which you can read more on here.”
So, you booked the venue, got the students, and want to tell people about what you are doing? In this digital world, it can be dizzying with the options available to use. This article intends to break down some of the most efficient and effective methods an artist can use to promote and generate interest in their classes.
Find your Voice(s): These days, having more than one social media channel to promote your classes and activity is common. Most creatives use either a Facebook Art Page, Instagram Account and/or combination of other sources (Twitter, Ko-Fi, Youtube, Snapchat, etc.). Depending on your ideal audience, you may prefer one platform over another.
Frequent Flier Miles: Digital communication are important, but there is still merit in participating in the more traditional, physical means of promotion. Printing a couple fliers to post at your local library, community board, etc. can be just as helpful in branching out your offerings. (Tip: Instead of having your flier listing personal contact info, list your online handles to make it easier for people to connect with you on their time).
Quality over Quantity: Having a monthly (or even weekly) scheduled communication can not only help in creating a consistent stream of content but can also develop a routine for your followers. People tend to be creatures of habit, and sometimes posting or making announcements every day can be offputting. Make sure your communications are consistent and focus on information that provides value to your correspondence, however that may be presented to your contacts. Class times, locations, Q&A's, videos, new content and lesson plan announcements and more are great kinds of information to put in your communications.
Do it live: With features taking inspiration from apps like Periscope and Snapchat, you can “Go Live” to either make announcements, have discussions with followers or just hang out with your fans. This function is currently taking precedent on most platforms (Instagram and Facebook specifically). Once you go live you can either archive your feed, delete it, or allow it to disappear after twenty four hours to create an urgency with your content. This function can be intimidating for people who don't like being in front of a camera. However, if you know how to utilize your personality, doing live feeds can be a great way to garner attention for your classes and offerings. (Artists often "Go Live" to do their work and talk with viewers.)
News to the Letter: Newsletters can be helpful to passively inform people who want to know about your classes and announcements. While it may not be at the forefront of most social media, it is still a very formal and professionally handled medium! Once a month communication is ideal, with your class times, new program offerings and other fun announcements can be very helpful! There are several programs that can help you decorate and personalize your newsletters, so get as creative as you’d like.
Working the Net: With so many options, it may help to not only establish a “base” plan of action, but don’t be scared to explore new options and try out new platforms and programs as they arise. You may find yourself getting a lot of attention with Instagram, but get more class sign-ups through Facebook (or vice versa). Be sure to keep tabs on your statistics (reach, clicks, shares, etc.) and work to your strengths! Many artists will explore as many platforms as they can to expand their audience. Every little bit helps!
We hope this is helpful to you, and gives you some new ideas to try in your communication efforts! Do you have any ideas or strategies that work for you that we missed? Let us know in the comments! Happy teaching, and be sure to check back with more tips and tricks for professional creatives on thalo!