As an artist, we spend all our energy creating, and when we come to sell the art, nothing seems to happen. This can be super frustrating, and I can tell you, it’s usually not because your art is “bad”.
Why do people by buy?
Understanding the reasons people buy anything is important to understanding why someone would buy from you instead of the next person. We may think we buy products randomly, or based on a basic need. But usually, this is secondary to the process of buying. People buy into people and brands that represent the type of person they are or most likely, want to be.
So how can you achieve this?
Firstly, you need to solve a problem. I know what you’re thinking… ‘How do stickers solve a problem?’ Stickers are a form of self-expression. Your art on the sticker they buy, represents what they want to show to the world about themselves; their philosophy, ideaology, preferences and statements about the person they are.
Why do they buy that pink sparkling sticker? Probably because they feel cute and adorable when they look at it. It tells everyone that this represents their personality and this feels their need! Needs don’t have to be ‘essential to life’ as it were, but I would argue that self-expression is essential to fulfilling to our deeper inner selves.
By creating that strong personal presence as an artist, connecting with people on the things they resonate with, you will then find those that want to buy into you. A consistent brand that people can relate to. The brand helps people recognise you in a crowd. Your brand message should line up with the aesthetic of your artwork. This creates trust, reliability and authenticity.
Now, we know that establishing a strong brand identity for yourself is essential for standing out in a competitive market and attracting a loyal customer base. By crafting a unique and memorable brand, you can differentiate yourself from others and create a lasting impact.
Here's how you can connect with your target audience and build a thriving community of supporters.
Define Your Brand Identity:
How do you define your brand identity? By clarifying your values, vision, and unique selling proposition. Ask yourself:
- What makes your artistic style distinct and captivating?
- Which emotions or messages do you want your art and the stickers you make to evoke?
- Who is your target audience, and what resonates with them?
Identifying your target audience is essential for effectively connecting with the right people who will appreciate and support your work. Grab a notebook and make notes an overall vision of your business and it’s branding by working through these steps:
1. Reflect on Your Artistic Style:
Consider the unique aspects of your artistic style, the themes you explore, and the emotions you evoke through your art. Reflect on who might be drawn to your style and the subjects you are touching on. Are there specific demographics or groups that align with your artistic expression?
2. Analyze Your Existing Audience:
If you already have an online presence or have sold your artwork in the past, analyze your existing audience. Look at the demographics, interests, and feedback of those who engage with your work. This information can offer valuable insights into the types of people who resonate with your art. Look at their social media profiles if they follow you. Write down any commonalities. Are they all women, are they creatives too, maybe they all like a particular genre of music?
3. Conduct Market Research:
Perform market research *yawn*… yes, this is not the exciting part but to gain a deeper understanding of the art market and your potential audience you should delve deeper into this. Explore similar artists or art communities and analyze their followers or customers. Look for patterns in demographics, interests, and purchasing behaviors. This research can provide really valuable information about potential target audiences.
4. Create Buyer Personas:
Also known as avatars or ideal customers. Develop detailed buyer personas that represent your ideal customers. Consider information such as age, gender, location, and occupation. Dig deeper into their interests, preferences, values, and lifestyle choices. Who else do your followers follow? This exercise will help you visualize and understand your target audience more effectively. It might not be what you originally thought.
5. Engage in Conversations and Gather Feedback:
Engaging with your existing audience and getting feedback is a great starting point. Initiate conversations through social media, art events, or online forums to gain insights into their motivations and preferences. Don’t try to sell, just ask for their opinions on your artwork, themes, and any new directions you are exploring. Their feedback can provide valuable clues about your target audience.
6. Experiment and Observe:
Experiment with different art styles, subject matters, or themes and observe the responses from your audience. Pay attention to the pieces that receive the most engagement, positive feedback, or sales. This experimentation will help you refine your understanding of the specific niche within your target audience that resonates most with your work.
7. Learn More and Adapt:
Continue to evaluate and refine your understanding of your target audience as you gain more experience and insights. Be open to evolving your artistic style or exploring new themes to align with the preferences and interests of your target audience. Stay connected with your audience and adapt as you grow as an artist.
Remember, defining your target audience is not a one-time task but an ongoing process.
Regularly reassess what you think you know. As you gain more clarity about the people who appreciate and connect with your art and content, adapt. You can tailor your artistic approach, marketing efforts, and engagement strategies to foster meaningful connections and long-term supporters.
Craft a Compelling Brand Story:
Sharing your artistic journey, inspirations, and the passion that drives your creations will help your audience engage. Let your narrative reflect your personality to create a lasting bond between them and your art.
You are after all, your brand.
Design a Memorable Logo:
Develop a visually appealing and memorable logo that reflects your artistic style and captures the mood of your brand. Consider colors, fonts, and imagery that align with your brand's personality and differentiate you from others. Your logo will become the visual centerpiece of your brand, so invest time and effort into its design.
Establish Consistent Visual Branding:
Consistency is crucial for brand recognition. Establish a cohesive visual brand identity that extends beyond your logo. Choose a consistent color palette, typography, and visual elements that align with your artistic style and resonate with your target audience. Apply these elements consistently across your packaging, website, social media, and promotional materials. For example; if you have a following that cares about waste and the planet primarily, consider choosing packaging that can be recycled easily or are biodegradable.
Create High-Quality Sticker Designs:
Focus on creating high-quality, visually captivating sticker designs that reflect your unique style. Pay attention to detail, color choices, and overall composition. It’s also important to consider size and the use of the sticker. A bumper sticker, for instance, would benefit from being much larger than planner stickers. This all adds to the reliability of your brand identity.
Strive to create stickers that customers will recognize as distinctly yours, fostering a sense of brand loyalty. Do you have your logo or signature featured? Maybe you use a set colour palette or feature your unique characters.
Develop Brand Voice and Tone:
Define the voice and tone of your brand's communication. Determine how you want to interact with your audience, whether it's casual and conversational, professional and informative, or whimsical and playful.
Consistency in your brand's communication style helps build a recognizable and relatable brand persona.
Build an Engaging Online Presence:
Harness the power of online platforms and social media channels to build an engaging online presence. Showcase your sticker designs, offer behind-the-scenes glimpses into your creative process, and interact with your audience. People love to see what goes on in the background with progress shots, timelapses of your work, your personal story and even your failure moments can create a real connection with your audience.
Engage in conversations, respond to comments and messages, and foster a community around your brand.
Provide Exceptional Customer Experience:
I cannot tell you how important this is. You must deliver exceptional customer service to enhance your brand's reputation. Be prompt and friendly when communicating, package your stickers with care, and go the extra mile for your customers. Positive experiences with your brand will strengthen customer loyalty and generate word-of-mouth recommendations.
Seek Collaborations and Partnerships:
Explore collaborations with other artists, influencers, or brands that align with your aesthetic and target audience. Collaborative projects can expand your reach and introduce your brand to new audiences, generating mutual benefits for all involved.
Continuously Evolve and Refine:
Remember that a brand evolves over time. Regularly assess your brand's performance, gather feedback from customers, and adapt accordingly. Stay true to your artistic style while remaining open to new opportunities and trends that align with your brand.
Dare to be bold, dare to be original. Don’t shy away from your true self or be scared to expose your failures.
Creating a remarkable brand for your sticker art business is key and requires clarity, consistency, and creativity. Define your brand identity, share your compelling brand story, and design a memorable logo. Establish consistent visual branding, deliver exceptional customer experiences, and build an engaging online presence. Seek collaborations, continuously refine your brand, and stay true to your artistic vision. With these steps, you can create a brand that resonates with your audience and sets your sticker business apart from the rest.