Hi everyone. Yianni Stamas here. Grants and crowdfunding are two of the most daunting challenges that artists can face in terms of income streams and for this reason we thought it was important to take them on in part 4 of our 6 part series “How to Make Money as an Artist: Income Streams for Creatives of All Kinds.”
This week’s sequence of steps can be found more in depth in a PowerPoint video and a PDF file for those of you who are members of the Art Gush Online Education Site. But even if you’re not an Art Gush member, we hope that the abbreviated version of the steps below will be helpful and of value to you. This short series of steps is a part of us guest blogging on a continuing series of different blogs with a new blog entry each week.
Regardless of whether you are a musician, writer, filmmaker, actor etc., the new model for artist success is to be an ArtisticPreneur and to take control of both the business and art of your creative career. In a step by step procedure here on “Artist Steps” we take a brief look at grants and crowdfunding as well as touch on the topic of digitally selling your art online such as through mp3s, eBooks and even movies.
Again, this is a part of a guest blogging continuum that is most easy to track week by week if you are a member of our NYC Create Newsletter for ArtisticPreneurs. Why? Because in each weekly email correspondence we provide you with the latest links to the series, regardless of which blog it occurs on.
While we sort out our policies on GDPR we are not taking on any new newsletter recipients at this time, but will make an announcement once we resume accepting subscribers.
Here now is the next series of steps for those of you who have been following along via the e-newsletter and blogs.
• Make notes of all the grants that apply to you.
• Request or download the application you will need.
• The strategy for getting grants is to get to know the people who are offering the grants. Even if you don’t get a grant from these people the first couple of times you try, because they know you, it is much more likely that down the road you will get a grant from them. This is very important to realize and can keep you motivated even if you don’t get a grant for the first couple of times.
• Get into the headspace that you will likely have to try for the grant at least a couple of times before getting it.
• Be sure to be cordial to all the grant givers, even if it is by phone or email and you don’t get to meet the grant giver in person.
• Something to note as you fill out grant applications is that the headache with grants is that they often have very specific guidelines that you need to follow to get them. Don’t make the mistake to not follow their guidelines because your project could get thrown out for this reason.
• Look carefully at all your grant applications. Have you followed directions to the “T?”
• What can you do to make your grant application more attractive?
• Another way to make money as an artist is to do crowdfunding. The secret to crowdfunding is that you have to drive traffic to your crowdfunding page. It is a myth that you can just put up a crowdfunding page and they will come. It does happen in some cases but this is rare.
• Market your crowdfunding effort in advance of actually putting it up on the crowdfunding site.
• Continue promoting your crowd funding effort while in process, and be sure to thank all those who donate to the cause.
• You can use things like social media to build up funders for your crowdfunding venture. But don’t rely on this only. Use email marketing and any other forms of marketing you have at your disposal.
• Although it can feel awkward, the best people to get behind your cause are friends and family. The more “cause” oriented your venture, the more likely you will be to get their participation.
• Call everyone you know. Use social media with every person you know, etc. You must be passionate about your “cause” for this to work.
• A suggestion when crowdfunding is to have giveaways for every level that a funder will give to you. Also you might want to crowdfund with something involving your art but at the same time be something that solves a problem for someone.
• You want to be solution oriented with the product, service or creative project that you are raising funds for. You must make a choice when setting up your crowdfunding platform to help others with your product, service or creative project.
• Create a workflow and schedule for your marketing efforts both online and off. You need to have that entrepreneurial energy and commitment.
• Another way to make money as an artist is to sell your original art regardless of what kind of artist you are. Now in the digital age it is possible, regardless of the kind of art you do, to make a version of it available digitally. You must again focus on how purchasing your art by others helps a cause of some sort.
• We will be getting into selling your art online more in the next Art Gush course, but for now put your attention on how the purchase of the art gives the purchaser a good feeling about helping in some way.
• Again, use all your marketing resources to get the word out about the purchase of your art online being available.