If you’re a small arts organization (or on the marketing committee for one), you know that finding the right marketing methods to grow your organization can be a challenge. And if something seems off, don’t worry – it’s not you. Arts marketing is a whole different ballgame from general marketing. The ideas, budgets, and methods that work in other industries don’t always translate to ours. That’s why it’s crucial to approach Arts marketing with a strategic mindset. Here are 3 key ideas to keep in mind, when crafting your Arts marketing plan, that will take your arts organization to the next level:
1. Your Product Is Intangible And Its Value Varies By Patron Which Requires Creative Marketing
Selling the Arts is a totally different game than selling cars or gadgets. You can’t just slap a price tag on a painting or a concert and call it a day. See, in the Arts, you’re selling something much more personal and that makes its value subjective, which can be a bit of a challenge. Other sales-based industries have it easy – their product is a physical object that you can touch and feel. But in the Arts, we’re dealing with emotions and personal connections. That’s what makes it such a unique and challenging yet rewarding field to work in!
When creating your plan, pull up high-level examples and take a look at their brand marketing overall. What are they doing that is successful? Are they implementing evergreen campaigns? Are they having authentic communications with patrons? Are they building the foundation for trust in future sales regardless of whether or not their audience recognizes the show title or exhibit?
How can you implement these ideas into your own creative marketing? Think bigger than just what is coming next!
2. You Have A Multifaceted Audience
Arts lovers come in all shapes and sizes, and that’s a great thing! After all, the more diverse our audience is, the richer our artistic experiences become and the more sustainable our arts organizations become long-term. But to attract and retain an audience from different backgrounds, age ranges, and experiences, your marketing efforts need to speak to each group. Always take this into consideration when crafting your Arts marketing strategy.
3. As A Non-Profit, You lack RESOURCES!
Let’s be real with each other – working in non-profit arts is tough (Are you crying at your desk right now? Been there!). Resources are almost always limited, and there’s pressure to continually do more with less. Everyone is looking at your bottom line and expects you to balance out to $0 every year. I won’t even get started on how that hinders your ability to invest in your future, plan forward, and spread your art on a wider scale (another blog post for another day!).
On top of all that, your staff (if you have any) probably either turns over really frequently because they are overworked and underpaid, or they’ve been there forever and are caught in the churn, so they just have to keep doing things the way they’ve always done them because there isn’t time to change it up.
This has to be taken into consideration when creating your marketing plans-your strategies have to be efficient and effective-you must see results because you can’t do things that don’t work – you don’t have the time or money to do so.
That’s Where Confluence Arts Solutions Comes In!
We recognize that everyone’s tastes and preferences are different, and that this can make our job challenging at times. That’s why we’re so passionate about sharing our love for the Arts with others and helping to create opportunities for people to experience it in their own way. We know that our fellow Arts Marketers face similar challenges, and we’re here to support them every step of the way!
As an Arts Marketing Coach, a former tap dancer, and the CEO and Founder of Confluence Arts Solutions, I have more than 20 years of experience working within every level of an arts organization. When it comes to Arts Marketing, my team and I can provide you with expertise, backed by a wide breadth of experience-based knowledge. We know what you are up against as an arts organization in today’s world and we can help you thrive in it!
To learn more about us and what we can do for you, please reach out to us for a consultation!