“Be Yourself.” Advice often said, but rarely taken. Being yourself is difficult because we don’t know where to begin. Who are we as a person? We think about our likes and dislikes, beliefs, morals, and maybe what we want to do for a living. I love the quote, “The best way to find yourself is to lose yourself in the service of others.” by Mahatma Gandhi. I have thought about starting my own business and how I treat others is very crucial to me. One of the reasons I took a marketing class was to figure out the basics on how to reach customers and better ways of interacting with them. Throughout this whole process, the main lesson I learned was, be yourself. When you are an entrepreneur, how you interact and treat your customers will determine how long your business lasts. If you are meaningful and have unique and engaging posts, you are more likely to keep your customers.
The most important basic tools that I learned would be Auditing, SWOT analysis, SMART Goals, and knowing your target demographic. I would like to start a business selling the art I create. Now since I haven’t started it yet there is nothing to audit, but it would be important for me to remember every month to check what is working for my company and what isn’t getting any traction. With a SWOT analysis, the strengths for my art business would be; my attention to detail in creating what the customer wants, reduced framing costs, and my ability to create something unique. A weakness of the business would be the time it takes to create that detail and put everything I have into it. Some opportunities would be using social media to my advantage when advertising my art. I could make explainer videos on how I go about creating the commissions and have timelapse teasers on other platforms. One other opportunity would be putting my drawings onto clothes, stickers, books, and pins. One threat would be not reaching my intended audience. My style of black and white art isn’t for everyone, but no matter what I do I put in my all. Another threat would-be artists who are able to complete work faster than me. My competition is generally either creating art videos for entertainment or tutorials which tend to be a little boring. I would want my overall goals to be; giving beauty to everyone, being an encouragement, focused on those who are having a hard time, and in the next five years creates a community to share people’s love and joy.
“There is nothing more beautiful than someone who goes out of their way to make life beautiful for others.”Mandy Hale
I have figured out I would use the platforms; Pinterest, Instagram, Facebook, LinkedIn, and YouTube. I would also be targeting an audience of young adults who has or currently is experiencing mental illness. I use my art as my own therapy, so I wish to make it into something that will give someone hope, that someone cares about them. I want to create a new type of art, one that helps people and one that connects other’s who struggle. I had never really known how promotions targeted certain demographics, but after learning and seeing how easy it is I want to try them. My main issue is money, I need customers to make money so I can buy supplies, but I don’t have many customers currently. The basics of starting on commissions are to show your versatility between different projects and to be consistent in your style. If you use the same style over different projects, it is easier to link your work as your own unique art style
As I have gone through the text I have been able to create a better plan for how to start my business and to keep in mind how I would like to connect with them. I want to make a place where people are comfortable to share who they really are and to give hope to those who consider leaving this world. I would like to create something interactive, where I can draw alongside people, maybe start conversations, and create a better realm for Art Therapy. I have figured out where I want to end, but the hard part is starting. I know I have to focus on consistency and to learn from all failures, but I still have a lingering question. How do you start gaining an audience when you can’t pay for promotions to reach them?
-Photograph and art created by Rio Matzke.