Tantowi grew up drawing and designing. Now she makes videos for a living and loves every second of it.
There is no doubt that artists and creatives thrive in the digital age. The methods artists use to get their work out and connect with the public range from blogs to websites to social media profiles. Instagram and TikTok have recently become popular platforms for artists. We use social media to communicate, and for artists who want to make a name for themselves in the art world, it is one of the most important tools. Connecting with others who share your passion can help you succeed as an artist. So I have put together some tips and insights to help artists of all kinds find success on social media and leverage this trend to their advantage.
Long before online marketing existed, social media quickly became an important promotional tool for artists. The first artists to use it were the most popular. They simply moved their followers from MySpace and Facebook to Twitter and Instagram, then to TikTok. In recent years, more and more aspiring visual artists have gained exposure to what many of us have begun to view as the ideal platform for visual artists. In this article, I hope to highlight how social media can work for you, dear artist, so that you can use it more effectively.
Find Your Authentic Niche
Ever wonder how some people get so popular on social media while others don’t? Social media is the perfect way to build your brand, and it works for both businesses or individuals. The key is finding your authentic niche online and still being yourself whether you have 100 or 10,000 followers. The search for the right niche can be difficult. A lot of people ask themselves if they should find a more “mainstream” topic because it would be easier to find an audience. It is true that there is greater visibility with a larger audience but this often comes at an expense. If you are creating art that doesn’t match your authentic self or is not true to who you are, then you will lose authenticity in your voice and your work.
Once you've identified your authentic niche, it's time to work on it. Because social media is such an important platform for artists, it makes sense to concentrate your efforts there. You should also be selective about what you post. Focus on a handful of specific topics or tags that resonate with you and give your audience something to get excited about. Post consistently and organically (no auto-posts) across all relevant channels, such as email, blogging, social media, etc.
There is a lot of noise on the internet about simply being a social media celebrity, but if the goal is to make art, fame is secondary to creating content that helps others. If you have a lot of followers, you have a lot of influence on others because your voice in the Internet world is like a talking point.
Get Involved in Relevant Hashtags
On Instagram, Twitter, and other social media, hashtags are a great way to connect with people. An artist can also use them as a promotional tool. But they can be difficult to use effectively. Many artists just use hashtags in their posts. Even if they get noticed, they are likely to get lost in the shuffle of other posts with the same hashtag.
Using relevant hashtags will allow you to build a following, which will help you gain more followers, likes, and help attract new followers who want to follow artists who post interesting things. Whether you're making art, selling prints or simply sharing experiences, engaging with the right people in the right way will lead you to fans who will support you regardless of what you're doing.
Know Your Audience
Your social media profile is your business address. Having a great social media profile can get you more willing clients, leads, or sales. For an artist, knowing your audience allows you to develop relationships that transcend borders, which is very helpful in case you want to build an independent business as an artist. The more people that know about you, the better chance you have of succeeding.
To make social media work for you, you need to understand who your audience really is, what issues they care about, and how they feel about your work. Learn what matters to them, what motivates them, and what makes them laugh. Create an authentic relationship with your audience by incorporating that information into your own brand and social media feeds.
Post Often, but Not Too Often
There’s a fine line between posting too much on social media and not enough. If you post too much you run the risk of your followers unfollowing you. If you don’t post enough, people will forget you exist. Just one post per day is enough to get a lot of followers.
Artists are always infrequent users of social media. A busy artist's life leaves little time for socializing. Many artists only delete their Twitter accounts during the week or month because they are too engrossed in their work to post regularly. Most artists have two goals in life: earning a living and creating art and becoming better acquainted with fellow human beings. Choosing regular topics that resonate with you on social media will help you achieve these two goals instead of continuing to post on social media constantly.
There is a general rule that an artist should follow four rules when using social media for art:
- Always talk about the work.
- Show an example of what you do.
- Share your latest work and progress photos.
- Ask questions related to your work and share resources that help you.
Don't Worry About Numbers, but Engagement
The numbers are nice but they don’t tell the whole story. When you look at engagement as an artist it tells you nothing about the quality of the communication. What matters most is that the person you are talking with knows you and your artwork. Social media can be overwhelming since there is so much information (good and bad) out there. But focusing on quality, real-time interaction will help you shine and expand your fan base.
Engagement does not necessarily mean likes and comments but is a good indication of how you are connecting with your audience. Numbers (followers) are not the key to social media success. Engagement is what matters most. A social media conversation should be a conversation between the artist and the audience, with you as the host. Social media can be overwhelming. Don't let it be. Make sure you know which social platforms are worth your time and which ones will collapse under their own weight without your participation.
The goal of an artist on Instagram is to be appreciated. But this means that you can't always publicize every new creation or keep quiet about the ones that don't work out. It's important to learn when to post and when not to. Social media has become a vital tool for artists not just because it gives us a chance to interact directly with our fans but also because it allows us to showcase our talents in a highly informative way that allows others to get inspired and decide how they want to support us financially.
This content reflects the personal opinions of the author. It is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and should not be substituted for impartial fact or advice in legal, political, or personal matters.
© 2021 Tantowi Gilang