How to gain exposure for your art online
It is common for me to receive dozens of questions each month concerning advice on how to develop or improve online presence. There are many artists who want to improve exposure for their art by utilizing the Internet. The problem is that most do not know how to do it efficiently. True, there are many books about this subject on the market. However, there is also a world of information online that one can obtain without cost. It all starts with a simple search.
Search ‘online exposure for art’, ‘how to gain exposure for your art online’, or any number of combinations and you will most likely find some useful information. Google searches for ‘art business’, ‘art market’, or simply ‘online exposure’ can also be helpful. Below I will provide some general advice about obtaining exposure and creating presence online for your art.
One of your main goals will be to obtain traffic to your personal art website or the profiles that you have created on online art communities such as www.myartspace.com. This is a task that will involve some organization if you desire to do it well. Thus, be prepared to spend 15 minutes to an hour each day updating specific online efforts and posting links. The sacrifice of time is minimal when compared to what can be achieved.
Many artists make the mistake of thinking that the effort involved in gaining exposure and presence online is a one trick pony. These artists will create profiles on select online art communities or create a personal website thinking that alone will build their online presence. They create a personal site and online art community profiles-- but fail to update or promote them. Again, that tactic is a one trick pony that will have mediocre results at best. It is kind of like going to the gym only to leave shortly after setting up equipment. In other words, creating a personal website or online art community profile is just the starting point.
True, those minimal efforts will certainly help with online exposure and presence, but it is not an efficient way to establish yourself online if you allow them to gather cyber dust, so to speak. In order to receive a steady flow of traffic to your art online you must spread your links like wildfire on the World Wide Web. There are several ways to go about it. For example, if you visit an online forum you will want to include a link to your main art site at the end of any comment you make. Often there will be a space provided for the URL. If so, use it! This goes for Myspace bulletins, Facebook messages, Livejournal entries, blog comments… and so on.
You can also take advantage of email. When you write or reply to someone you will want to include links below your name at the bottom of your message. That will hopefully spur curious readers to visit your personal website or the profiles you have on online art communities. Email can be a powerful tool for gaining exposure. Especially if you establish an e-letter in order to keep family, friends, past buyers and other interested individuals current about your art practice, exhibits, and updated about your website and online efforts.
My point in all of this is that you can't simply create a personal website or community profile for your art thinking that the site(s) alone will do all the work for you. True, having your work on any site will bring visitors to your art, but you need to do some work yourself in order to maximize that traffic. You need to have your name and links to your art on as many sites as possible. You need to pass those links on whenever the opportunity arises. Remember that there is nothing wrong with promoting who you are and what you do. There is no room to be shy-- especially when we are talking about the internet.
On a side note, artists also need to think about Search Engine Optimization (SEO). That is a topic that I will go into further detail about in the near future.
Take care, Stay true,