Today, I want to talk about the art of social media. As we all know and are experiencing, social media has become apart of our everyday lives. Back in the day, we as a society were limited to our methods of communicating with one another. Most communication had to be done in person or through word of mouth when it came to promoting our businesses, services and even artwork. With me being in my mid-twenties right now, I can’t even imagine doing this art journey, or really my entire business without the internet and social media being involved in some way, shape, or form.
I often signup for different blog subscriptions that interest me either personally or professionally, in which our topic today stems from a very good site that I have been following for about two – three months now that has been founded and operated by Alyson Stanfield, The Art Biz Coach. Her name basically tells it all, but she is in fact my virtual art business coach right along with previous professors I have built connections with from college, and art teachers from high and middle school. She doesn’t know it but, she has helped out a lot from simply posting on her website, along with sending weekly emails on different topics relating to the art world.
One topic she hit on last month was social media and how it is not in fact the answer for true, long term artists. I really felt where she was coming from when she stated and explained why hacking social media is not the answer. Sometimes we can all get so caught up in trying to get as many “likes” as possible on these social media sites, that we can no longer see the bigger picture and can’t obtain what we need because we are so focused on others “seeing” what we can do and have done. For a true artist, trying to figure out the easiest and quickest way to gain followers on these sites is a sign that you are off track. Of course, you should be focusing on your artwork more than anything, BUT social media can in fact help only IF you have the right people following you and are actually engaging with you on social media.
Social media won’t fix your broken marketing. -Alyson Stanfield
If you do not have the correct following, meaning if you just have a bunch of random followers who care nothing about your artwork, nor what you’re doing, and even throw backlash at you for simply posting what you love, then that amount of followers is useless. In art, it is essential and highly important that you have the right people around you not only physically while pursuing your dreams, but also virtually. Just think, how can that list of 2,000 followers who are into music, politics, and animals really help you who is apart of the art world? You and your following should definitely have something in common in order to engage with them fully and positively. Stanfield stated, social media is more valuable when you share your art with a generous and loving spirit. If everyone around you hates your art, find new people to be around who love it. There is nothing wrong with constructive criticism but please recognize when it is criticism that is coming from someone who wants to help, and when it is coming from someone who would rather help you fail and doesn’t want to see you doing good. Also everyone may not see your dream and may not feel where you are coming from. You have two options in this case, either explain your dream to them in hopes of trying to get them on the same page as you and to see what you see, or simply delete them from your pages. Everyone who is around you online, should be of some type of encouragement to your life and what you love to do. You may not be able to do this in the real world and apart of reality, but the virtual world is the only type of world where you can control who is around you and who should not be. Use it to your own advantage.
Last but not least, don’t get caught up in the hype over followers online. Trust me, there are million dollar artists out here who have 50 followers on instagram, twitter, etc. Some of these big time artists who have flown all over the world don’t even have social media accounts at all. They don’t believe in that sort of thing and may even be selling way more art in the real world than someone who is too caught up in getting their artwork out there in the virtually world.
Check out Alyson Stanfield’s article on Why Hacking Social Media Isn’t The Answer (and Why I Won’t Teach It) from The Art Biz Coach today!