Creative entrepreneurs need fans! Not to build us up or to boost our ego, but to literally support our efforts as an artist so that we can continue to be more creative. Could you use a bigger audience? What if you had more raving fans? Let’s do some math! I know … creatives don’t always like math … but it’s important if you are a creative entrepreneur!
If you had 100 super fans that paid you $1,000 per year, that would be 100k back into your artist fund. What could you create if you had that kind of support? You sell in smaller numbers? What if you sold 1000 super fans a $100 worth of product per year, that’s 100k? Or if you dare to imagine, what if you had 10 fans that paid you $10,000? Imagine how wonderful it would be to serve those ten super fans? You get the point. Business comes down to math.
Personally, I think it is easier to find 10-100 super fans to nurture and care for over a year. What if you found these super fans and could spend one day a week, reaching out to them and giving them the inside scoop, behind the scenes, private concerts, and even artist retreats? These super fans will bring more super fans. Then this system of super fans can organically grow to whatever you feel you can sustain as an artist. Because it really comes back to this: caring for your fans and making space for your own creativity to flourish.
The best way to find super fans is to become specifically niched. Now as artists this can be extremely difficult. We became artists so that we could create whatever we wanted. Isn’t that the true essence of an artist? Traditional marketing teaches us that the more focused you are on your message, offer, and service, the easier it is to find people that want or need your “product”. So how do we transfer this to our art form without diminishing our creative integrity?
The artists, musicians, and creative entrepreneurs that flourish and find super fans are the ones that create focused series. Let’s take a fine artist: do a series of paintings that all have one overriding consistent theme. Maybe one theme for every season. For a musician, create music with one musical niche per album. This might feel like a creative prison. Carol don’t tell me to only paint flowers or to only sing one type of music! And, I am not saying that. Create whatever you want all day long but focus your marketing efforts toward one “series” at a time. Our fans need a focused message. One message that will go straight to their heart. People buy based on emotion. If you can make them feel a certain way... happy, peaceful, encouraged, passionate, then you are 75% on your way to creating a super fan.
Take a social justice approach. What is it that you feel strongly about? Create around this topic, market this topic, and find fans that feel the same as you. You can create fine art, written works, and music all around this topic. Be “cause driven” in your art. Maybe connect your launch to a cause that is outside of yourself. You were given your gifts and talents to change the world.
Just remember this saying, "A confused mind does not buy". If someone walks into your concert, gallery show, or other creative launch, it’s your job to pull them into your world, your vision, your direction, your cause. If you pull them into confusion and chaos, they may not connect, and not buy. Do you fear of losing fans if you go too strongly in one direction? You might, but in their place, you will gain perfect fans that “get you” and want to be part of your creative world. It all begins with you and your message.
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