The world of sales, even with art, is much more than exchanging a product for money. It’s about a connection you create with a potential buyer and how that connection develops into a customer relationship.
These relationships sometimes come very naturally with someone, but other times, that relationship needs to be built. As the seller, building that relationship is your responsibility. Learning to build relationships for sales is not a natural interaction with someone, so you’ll need to practice. Don’t get discouraged if it takes a bit to get into a natural flow, simply turn the harder sales conversations into a learning moment.
You can do this by tracking how each of these interactions goes. Yes, I mean tracking how your conversations go – whether it’s good or bad, make a note of it and learn from it. I recommend keeping a notebook at your workstation so you can jot things down easily when you're emailing, on the phone, or immediately after an in-person conversation. I call this “Monday Morning Quarterbacking” and I have done it proactively with every sales (and often personal) interaction I have with people I am doing business with.
After you’ve started tracking your sales conversations, sit down once a week and go over your notes. This will allow you to see the patterns you make that may lead to a sale, or, unfortunately, bust a sale. If you can analyze and assess what happened… what objection(s) you got, how you answered it or did not answer it, what any sticking points were, what went well…You’ll be able to learn what works and what doesn’t and adjust as you go!
Sales is really a trial by error field of being an artist. It’s not easy to find your groove, and it can be discouraging when you miss sales and can’t figure out why. But, taking the time to sit down, and actually analyze the moves you make will make a difference. I know because I did it, and I help artists do it all the time.
You don’t have to dive into the world of sales alone. I cover sales over two modules in my Art MBA program and provide you with an in-depth sales check-list to get you started. I also talk about how I made my way through learning sales and then succeeding in sales and share all of my biggest tips and “tricks” when it comes to sales in the art world!
As one artist recently shared with me inside my recent coaching session for my Private Community inside the Art MBA program: “No one shares this information in the art world. I cannot believe all of the content and information you are giving” – (Thank you Ben J.!)