Marketing your surface pattern design work is what you will probably spend at least half, if not more, of your time on.
You may have beautiful artwork but you need people to see it, and not just any people but your ideal client.
As marketing can take up a lot of time, you want to know that what you are doing is effective and appropriate for your brand.
This blog post will give you some tips to consider when developing your marketing strategy so that you stay on track and best of all get results!
Create a website
This is the most obvious first step – creating a space online that showcases your work and allows potential clients to contact you.
Before you actually start making the website, I suggest getting some big pieces of paper and drawing out what you think it should look like – what will be the pages on the menu, what will be shown on each page, how will the pages link?
There are many resources online to guide you through making a website, just remember as you create your website refer to your brand style guide.
SEO sounds like it stands for Scary Electronic Organising – and I admit I was in complete denial about using it. But if you want your website to come up in google searches then you need to take a deep breath and learn to add SEO to your website. Basically it is just coming up with key words you add to each page to make them more likely to be found on web searches. Again there are many online resources to explain SEO and how to add it to your website – and trust me once you start it is super easy and not scary at all!
Blog blog and blog again
Ok I love writing blog posts and blogging is in fact how this website started, as a blog for underwater photography! You are probably wondering why regular blogging is important – well ‘fresh’ content is what moves your website up in google searches and best of all you can add SEO to your blog posts which again increases your search ranking. But personally I think blog posts are a FANTASTIC way to share insights into your work with your audience – I love reading other artist’s blogs and learn so much from them. The more people learn about you, the more you form connections and trust which eventually leads to clients.
Go where your ideal client is
So do you use Instagram, TikTok, Pinterest, LinkedIn, Facebook, Youtube, or everything??? Is your heart rate going up just thinking about social media?
Again deep breath – think back to your ideal client. What is they love, their hobbies and passions? Where would they spend their time on social media? It may be more than one platform, but to begin with just choose one and focus your energy on doing it really well. If social media seems really confusing and you don’t know where to begin, I highly recommend doing a course.
Most instructors will offer sample free training, do this first and see if you like the teaching style and enjoy the teacher. I personally am part of the Social Club Community and find that the weekly lessons and monthly Instagram planners are perfect for me, but again spend some time looking at options before choosing training.
Social media can be incredibly effective in finding clients, as long as you use it properly – and remember stick with your brand image and think of your ideal client in everything you post!
Look for other marketing opportunities
There are many ways to market your brand, not just social media. Look for opportunities like art competitions, art submissions, magazine submissions, Spoonflower challenges, and networking events. Even wearing your art on clothing and getting stopped on the street is a fun way to market your brand! You are a creative person so think creatively about how you can show your art to the world.
Review your marketing efforts
After you have spent all this effort into marketing your work, you need to see that your strategy is effective. This is where reviewing your marketing is important. Ideally when you create your marketing strategy it will include ways to review that it is working. For example you can look at your website analytics to see how many visits have come from Instagram, how many from google searches etc.. Did your website visits increase after you submitted your art to a competition? Did you get more client enquiries after running a series of Facebook ads? These are the sort of questions you always need to be asking yourself – as you don’t want to spend time on marketing if it is not getting the results you are after. Focus your future efforts on what does seem to be working.
Your marketing for surface pattern design will constantly evolve and while at times it can seem a bit ridiculous (Instagram Reels anyone?) just remember why you are doing it in the first place – to show the world your art and your brand – and not the entire world, but your ideal client.
And never ever do anything in marketing that you truly feel uncomfortable with, as it will show in what you produce and most importantly you want your business to be fun!!
Let me know if this post on marketing for surface pattern design has helped you in any way!