Being an artist is often times one of the most rewarding, yet stressful life experiences you can have. With the current consumer climate, the shift from hobbyist to maker can be daunting when you consider all the hats needed for successfully scaling your business. From content creator, to video editor, and public relations, it’s no surprise many businesses start off strong, only to fall due to unrefined foundations.
In this blog post, you’ll learn a few guidelines of what it takes to develop the foundational understanding when starting the journey from worried hobbyist towards successful entrepreneur.
1. Keep Your Brand On Target
Branding is the number one aspect of your business that can make or break your stride towards excellence. It takes time and effort to find and develop your voice, but this step is crucial when beginning the journey towards being a profitable product. Also, no one ever said your brand needs to be boring! Showcase your best work and show behind the scenes. Your brand should always represent both your work and your voice. Play to your strengths and don’t be afraid to take a chance. Failure is never the fall, it’s the decision to remain lying down after the decent.
2. Find Software and Platforms You Like and Stick With Them
Marketing takes time and effort. It’s no surprise that those who do well, are those who stuck with it. Much like horseback riding, it’s not the years you’ve been around it, it’s the time spent in the saddle that makes the difference. With all the apps available at the touch of a button, it’s always wise to expect a learning curve. This is not a race, and remember to always do your best. Practice makes perfect, so take the time to learn your software to ensure you can move efficiently & with ease.
Favorite Editing Apps:
Canva (for marketing materials), InShot (for basic video editing and reels creation), Apple/Droid Screen Record (for music capture), Airbrush (for selfie editing), and Adobe Lightroom (for photo editing)
3. Be Authentic
Don’t be afraid to show who you are. Be honest and don’t shy away from the weird, quirky, and unique parts of your true self. According to the official Instagram business blog, 90% of Instagram users follow a business, so why not yours? Your followers love your work because they connect to it. Determine what parts of your process you’re comfortable with sharing, and don’t worry about the rest. Write to your audience in your own voice.
4. Stay Up To Date
With the competitive nature of social media, there’s always some new kind of bait n’ switch ready to grab the users attention. Watch for trends and then meditate on how to transpose them to work with your brand. You don’t need to dance, but maybe you have the perfect behind the scene shot to showcase trending music? Have a favorite thing you wear in studio? Make your own artist fashion expose. The possibilities are endless, but do what feels good to you. Play along, but pave your own lane.
Also, pay attention to emotional shifts. With the world where it is, it’s no surprise many of us have coinciding weeks. If you notice a lot of trends have a melancholy feel, try posting sound advice you once received, or maybe a quote that always uplifts you. Controlling the narrative around your brand in response to collective stimuli is a major secret of how to engage your audience without making them uncomfortable.
Favorite Trend Locators:
Google Trends (for searching popular keywords), TikTok (to catch trends before they hit Insta), Sprout Social & Later Blogs (to stay up to date)
5. Don’t Be Afraid To Pivot
Change is inevitable and your style will always naturally shift and evolve. Concentrate on where you’re going and don’t judge your past. According to Yelp, over half a million people started a new business venture during the pandemic. Does that mean you should stop? Absolutely not! Ride the wave of support and link up with others in your community who are of the entrepreneurial mindset. Together, we move forward. So go where your passion pulls you.
6. Continuous Growth Is Better Than Quick Fixes and Hacks
Whatever you do, don’t buy followers. Not only can this cause your account to be banned on almost every platform, you’re also paying for useless vanity metrics. Vanity metrics do not equal sales. Ever. Engagement and conscious community building and involvement is the most lucrative way to spend your time. Sure, run ads if you have the financial ability to, but it’s not a requirement. Many people find success by simply spending an hour a day engaging with their curated audiences.
Also, use what you have. If you only have so much time to spend, spend it on what you can. Only have an hour? Schedule what you can and spend the rest conversing. Too emotionally drained? No worries, we’ve all been there. Set the intention to seek out trends instead of mindless scrolling. Remember to invest in yourself, and do your best to choose when to over extend. The age-old rule of 80/20 still says it best. 80% of the time you shoot for the moon, 20% of the time, you spend among the stars.
7. Schedule & Delegate
One of the hardest learning curves you will ever find when working for yourself is time management and delegation. In the amount of time and emotional energy you have spent procrastinating over the thing you hate most, you’ve now wasted 5 billable hours, with nothing to show. Contrary to popular belief, many people who procrastinate are not weak or lazy, they’re actually secret perfectionists who are simply afraid of failure before they even start. When you have the ability, pay people for what you hate. Have a teenager at home? Great! Have them do trend watch for you. Need content ideas? Do a poll in your stories. Being an entrepreneur is not about the money. Having the money buys the freedom so many of us strive for.
Don’t shy away from your unique weakness. These processes will often times turn into some of your greatest strengths. The first step is acknowledging and moving forward without judgment. I may be bad at laundry, but I’m amazing at color palettes. Rely on your community. They are here to support you.
Favorite Time Saving Tools:
Trello (for organization & planning – ps. don't forget to look at the templates!), Facebook Creator Studio (now available for scheduling Facebook & Instagram posts), Later (for analytics, scheduling, and more), Fiverr & Upwork (for contracting out those pesky jobs you hate)
Remember to stay true, persevere, and know you’ve got this. The world is your oyster, and I promise you can do it! In 5 years, you'll simply be 5 years older and upset you didn’t start now. Your art is beautiful, now is the time to show it to the world.
About the author -
Jupiter has been a part of the Mermaid Trash family for an extended period of time. As one of Lauren's closest friends, she has been a valuable asset to the Mermaid Trash brand. From social strategy to email marketing, and more, Jupiter loves to play behind the scenes helping to make sure marketing and growth moves at a rapid, yet comfortable pace.
Read her bio below:
"Coming from an eclectic background of technology and real world experiences, I have spent over a decade curating, refining, and adapting not only my skillset but also my reality to ensure balance and compassion are always observed. I highly enjoy taking on obstacles and using both data and intuition to gravitate and execute projects to their most favorable outcome. To me growth is continuous and methodical and must be observed as a moving target.
I have experience in a multitude of subjects ranging in social media, web development, and other online marketing practices. On a personal level I have come from a somewhat untraditional background that would include not only living on the road working renaissance fairs but also making every single AirTran truffle ever served on the airline.
Through life experiences, I live to tell a story."
Article exclusively written for and posted on Mermaid Trash - 08/2021