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Do I Have To? Hrm...No, But Also Yes

· Artist Services,Support Artists

One of the questions I get a lot when I’m coaching clients is, “Do I have to?”

If you didn’t read that as a petulant 6-year-old who was asked to clean their room instead of eating snacks in front of the TV, go back and read that again.
I know, I love my clients and they don’t say it quite in that tone. And there’s also a degree of whining that accompanies that question, even from adults.
Short answer: no, you don’t have to.
Longer answer involves a “….but you may want to try it.”
Listen, I’m not here to tell you to do anything you don’t want to do. What I am here to do is provide you with information that will help you get to the results you want.
(Hi, Sam here! Usually we write as a “we,” and I wanted to address this question since I’m the one hearing it a lot!)
I think a lot of us want to hear, “Do these things and you’ll have a six-figure business.” I mean, how many ads do you see on Facebook for people that promise that result?
While I’m not blasting anyone who makes money (we all have to in order to live now), I am deeply skeptical of the folks who promise those results. Because no one can promise that. No one worth their salt would, could, or should, in fact, guarantee results like that.
What worked for one person may not work for another. So, for an expert to claim they have the magic bullet or, “Just do what I did and you’ll get to the next tax bracket, too,” is very misleading and disingenuous.
I don’t hand out magic buzz-word answers, so I can’t say whether something will work for you or not. What I am doing is offering you techniques that have been successful for our clients in the past that you may want to try for yourself.

First, know what your measure of success is.

Basically everyone had a different answer and everyone has an idea of what success means to them.
When I’m consulting with a client and they ask, “Do I have to?” I can’t say for sure without knowing what success means to you.

Not only is this a powerful metric to know that will help you visualize and, ultimately, achieve your goals, this will be a guiding “why” that you can measure your decisions against. If you’re stuck trying to figure out what your unique success metric is for you, read our post, How to Set Goals You’ll Actually Achieve.

Second, understand the theory behind the technique.

When you know the rules, you can break the rules.
That goes for creating art as well as promoting it. My goal is to help you understand the techniques behind the marketing vehicles I offer to you. You have to know why you’re doing something, otherwise, what’s the point.
Explaining the theory and the expected outcomes will help us look at the results you want and pick the marketing avenues to try out. We can experiment to see if the expected outcomes perform better or worse for you.

Third, now that you know your goal, we can tailor the vehicle to your unique personality.

So, how will people know about it? You have to do some version of marketing to get the word out. If you’re an outgoing person who loves talking to people, you may want to put all your energy into going to artist spaces, coffee shops, and street corners to invite the community to your big night.
Does that sound like your personal version of hell? Well, let’s wrangle some words and send out personal messages to people on your mailing list, friends, and Instagram followers.
Either way, yes you have to tell people about it in order for them to know about it. I know - we’ll work on that whole osmosis thing later.
No matter which vehicle you choose, we’ll lay them all out on the table so you a) understand the pros and cons of each option and b) look at your goal and what success means to you and pick the best option with all things considered.
At the end of the day, understanding why you’re doing something is as important as testing it out and seeing if it works for you. After all, marketing is as subjective as art; if it represents you, then we’ll at least try it.
So, yes, you have to!

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