Friday, November 22, 2013

Marketing and Handmade Gift Giving in the Age of Technology

In todays world of technology and social media we are exposed to so many images so quickly.
Ancient Treasures Ammonite Ceramic Ocean Jasper Bracelet by StaciLouise 
And for many of us "in" this handmade community of DIY, craft, art, jewelry designer, bead maker, component specialist, etc., we are practicing how to fine tune our eyes to see through the fog of mass produced to be able to quickly pick out the most interesting to us, which tends to be the artist made handmade items.

And it is that skill of visual refinement for handmade high quality items that we as artists and art appreciators should be trying to just ever so delicately get in front of "the general public".

When you think about how people shop and look at online content it may help your marketing your work, and make your social media efforts more fruitful.
1. VISUAL. You see an image and immediately know if you want to click on it or pass it by. This is why your photography is SO important.
2. CLICKABLE. Make sure you title your photo when you can, have your name on it, make it link to somewhere that makes sense.
3. INTEREST. Title your work. A brief glance is all you may need.
4. INSIGHT. Inspiration and the creative process. Interested people often love to see where and how artwork is created.
5. CONNECTION. As customers learn about your art and they learn a little about you. This helps make a human connection to your work.
6. EASILY FOUND. Make sure your customers are able to remember where they found your work. Have Email newsletter links, follow buttons, pinterest links, share buttons, etc., all easily clickable.

Take a look at Karen McGovern's newly updated website where you can find all of her wonderful creations. Look at the photo, the description, the story behind it, and the clickable links!
Karen McGovern Butterfly Keepers
A lot of thought goes into creating a site like this, but once you know what you want and how you want your customers to interact - you'll just run with it and make it your own! Great Job Karen!

There are many ways for you to share that work with others through social media and help educate others about artist made handmade - just ever so much that they begin to see and make a connection.
Handmade for the Holidays Love My Art Jewelry Pinterest Board

One of my personal favorites is making a collection through a Pinterest board that expresses my interest in the work and what I would do with it in my life. Always keeping in mind that the original source - the artist or owner of the image should be the final clickable link in that pin.

If a pin does not go back to the originating source, I try to find that source or I do not re-pin it (there are exceptions of course - but the effort is always present).

For Love My Art Jewelry on Pinterest - we are hoping that having a Handmade for the Holidays board - that we can help promote some great handmade findings, supplies, finished jewelry, art and the related for individual artists. We can easily grab images from our link-up events for handmade items, our Flickr group, and similar social media to help promote handmade. Always being mindful that the intent on a Pinterest board like this is to try to get someone to purchase your item, not copy it...

PS - you should follow our LoveArtJewelry boards for updated info!
And just FYI it would have been LoveMyArtJewelry, but that had too many characters.

And as an artist, I highly recommend to every other artist out there to get your name on your photograph.
Here is a website called PicMonkey I use from my computer: for collage and editing photos (adding text too)
And an app called OVER for my iPhone: or just "OVER" in the app store.

Once your image is out there on the internet - it's out there.
You might as well have your name on it for proper credit and for legal protection.

When you create collections of your favorite things - through Pinterest, through favorites and your shop activity feed page you can blissfully look and see all of the wonderful handmade items that are out there and pretty much ignore all those mass produced items being posted to the "handmade" sections where they should not be allowed.

Shamefully though - with mentioning the way of searching sites as big as - finding artist made handmade through their clickable links on their home page is practically impossible. And in turn disappointing because when the general public lands there, that is what they have to start their search.

So keep in mind that these other social media based - artist handmade collections that you can make and share, are an excellent way to promote handmade at no cost other than your time and visual skill at making a collection.

Use things like #handmade #makermade #artistmade to put your social media efforts into the right category.
And communicate with us by using @LoveArtJewelry.

Both the # and @ should be followed by words strung together as all one word to file properly.

What are your favorite ways to help promote handmade?
Your blog? Flickr? Tumblr?
And what apps or websites are useful to you?

Don't forget to join up with our Black Friday through Cyber Monday post if you make handmade and are planning on running a sale or promotion at any point over that weekend (11/29/13 to 12/2/13).
The Link Up Tool closes on 11/28/13 EST.

Happy Holidays and may you get many sales this season to help support your family and your creative obsessions habits outlets!


stacilouise said...

This stuff makes my head spin, but you really help to de-mystify it marsha! love the new pinterest board, I plan to hop over there and pin some ideas of my own!

Christine said...

Thanks for so much great information!!

Artisan Beads Plus said...

I am going to read this in more depth this weekend. Thank-you for all of these tips! And..... yes, Karen's site is terrific! I would love to be able to do something similar.

Keith@Vintage Crab Jewelry said...

That is some really good advice, thank you! I am trying to improve my photo taking and I have to say that since I started blogging it has already improved. So many great photographers in blogland and they don't mind sharing some tips. I am so grateful!

Marsha of Marsha Neal Studio said...

Glad this is helpful for you guys! It gets so completely overwhelming...

I really try to stick to a few basic techniques, then add more to help promote as I go - but there is definitely a tipping point where my brain shuts down and I just can't add anything more to my plate.

Always out to find what goes the furthest with little effort time-wise (because I really want to be in the studio making beads!)

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