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August 2009
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After the Art Show

The Art show has ended. All of the participants are taking down their tents, loading up their vehicles and all have one goal in mind-to get home!
There is no doubt that participating in an Art show of any length can be tiring. If it was a financially good show for the artist, then the take down is almost cheery. If it was not financially productive, the artist’s take down attitude reveals that frame of mind.
Regardless, once back home at the studio, the artist can then relax and revert back to his normal routine. Right? Wrong!
The hardest thing for new artists to comprehend is that attending an art show is only a portion of the sale. If your art product is a commission product, you really have some work left to do!
The guestbook that we advise all artists to have in their booths at the show is the very first thing that you, the artist, need to address the following day. If you were selling your art product, your sales book should also have all that contact information. Use that as well.
Send an email to everyone who signed the guestbook and/or bought your artwork, thanking them for signing/buying and including a link to your website and most recent newsletter. You are not selling them something, you are reminding them that you are the artist that they communicated with. New artists at these shows will not collect information. They sell their product and the buyer walks away. Not good. Seasoned artists value their clients. Your sales book and guestbook are vital tools to keep these prospects aware of you and what new events or items you are creating.
if the prospect did not leave an email address then send a card thanking them for their interest. All of this falls under the sales rules of establishing a relationship with the client.

A week later you need to call everyone who expressed an interest in your art product. That’s right. Use the phone! In this day of electronic communication, it is easy to forget that the single most effective means of reaching a client is to pick up the telephone. Make sure that your phone ID shows that it is you. And if you get a message machine, leave a message but also try again. Not all equipment is efficient and homes with children and teens can easily erase your message. Always assume that they did not get the message, not that they are ignoring you!
within 3 weeks of the show, all these contacts need to be in your computer and mailing list. Send emails once a month and in the subject line make sure that your name is in there. (ie: Email from Glass Artist, John Doe, etc.)
Newsletter need the option of the recipient being able to opt out. Do not assume they are not interested in you if they do. Just assume that they get too much email! Never take unsubscibing personally.
It is perfectly OK to remind your prospects of upcoming events, holiday specials and any worthwhile events. The point in all the contacting is to stay somewhere in the mind of your prospect so WHEN she is ready to make another purchase or a first one, YOU come to mind!
Although a computer file is great, I still like the 3 x 5 index card files because I can make quick notes on the cards. I have two long boxes. One for the buyers and one for those who have expressed interest but have not yet purchased. Both lists are important but the ones who HAVE invested in you are very important. Never assume that because they already bought something, that they are through with you!

So when the show has ended, collect and file all your buyers and prospects. Take the time to organize all the information and have it at your fingertips. Because your real work starts after the show!

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