SCBWI's Blueboard - A Message & Chat Board

Struggling with Self-promotion

Discussion started on

I've always been a very introverted and nervous person, and for this reason all of my freelance work has been from personal commissions. Yesterday I bit the bullet and set up a facebook page for my art, and an Etsy store. I invited all my friends to like the facebook page, but not many of them did, and I'm really not sure what to do next.

I've joined a lot of websites, tried to show off my work and given links and samples out to many people, however I've still had no luck at all. How do you use social media to your advantage? Or is there a better way to promote yourself? It's hard because I was so worried about doing it, and now it's like I was right to be worried because it hasn't worked.
#1 - June 13, 2018, 03:54 PM
My Facebook Page: www.facebook.com/mikomiji
My Etsy: www.etsy.com/uk/shop/mikomiji

Going to be some fun competitions in future for my fb likers :)

Global Moderator
Poster Plus
  • ***
  • SCBWI Member
  • SCBWI Region westcentny
Welcome!

My first comment is that I stink at self promo. :-P

My second comment is, how long have you been promoting yourself? It is a slow burn, so definitely give it time to build on FB, etc. Make sure to participate with others as well, not just to expect a people to only reach out to without you doing anything in return.

And third, what is your end goal? To sell your own work on Etsy?
#2 - June 13, 2018, 04:09 PM
BLACKOUT -- available now
DESERTED -- available now
SISTERS DON'T TELL -- available now
www.deenalipomi.com

Global Moderator
Poster Plus
  • ***
  • SCBWI Member
  • SCBWI PAL
  • SCBWI Region iowa
Mikomiji, I think we all feel that. Self-promo is awkward at best. :hug

And yes to all the things dinalapomy101 said. It takes time--so you were right to get started! I wouldn't worry much that not too many people liked your FB page. Likes don't necessarily translate into...sales?

You might figure out what your goal on SM is (and you may not know entirely right now, and that's okay, too). Mine is to find the fun people, enjoy myself, contribute something, participate in the community of writers/illustrators/readers, and raise my profile so that folks who want to find me can.

I would recommend getting a Twitter account, following some illustrators, writers you enjoy, agents and editors, and then not tweeting anything for several weeks minimum--until you catch on to the culture. Twitter is like jumping onto a moving treadmill--but it's a really good idea to see what the people who represent and buys books are saying.

Good luck! SM can be a great way for introverts to make friends, because you can control the amount of contact and pace. Enjoy!
#3 - June 13, 2018, 05:51 PM
Learning to Swear in America (Bloomsbury, July 2016)
What Goes Up (Bloomsbury, 2017)
Twitter: KatieWritesBks

Thank you so much for your help!

I find Twitter so confusing but will give it another shot. Instagram is a little easier but I like to keep it casual professional (50% artwork the other 50% mainly photos of my cat :P) Following on Twitter could be a very good start though so thank you for that!

My goal is to finally be able to leave my 40 hour p/w busy customer service position, and start selling my art on Etsy and taking on other commissions to make a living instead. The SM is more just to get my work out to as many people as possible. I'm going to do things on facebook like give-aways and prize draws to those who like and share my posts.

This website among others has taught me the importance of networking and reading about other people and their work. It is surprisingly enjoyable to just be able to come on here and reply to others and get feedback :)
#4 - June 14, 2018, 06:04 AM
My Facebook Page: www.facebook.com/mikomiji
My Etsy: www.etsy.com/uk/shop/mikomiji

Going to be some fun competitions in future for my fb likers :)

Poster Plus
  • ***
  • SCBWI Member
  • SCBWI PAL
  • SCBWI Region canadaeast
Do you have your own website or just the Facebook page? If you don't have a website get one ASAP - a free site through wordpress or wix or something similar are just fine. Facebook works for some but has it's own issues. Did you set it up as a "personal" page or "business" page? Business pages are tricky things - Facebook wants you to pay for exposure essentially. Even those who like the page may not see your posts. I use public posts from my own personal facebook page to self-promote but mainly so if people are looking they'll at least find something. All my info is on my website. I use twitter to connect with the kidlit world - not so much for promotion although lots of people find it helpful for that (instagram too).  Postcards are my #1 self-promo tool for illustration stuff (or email for those that prefer that route). I'm not active on Instagram but I have an artist friend who said she gets a lot of work via Instagram. Etsy can be problematic but lots of people sell there. With Etsy you still have to do your own promotion to bring people to your shop but there is a risk that once they get there they will buy from another Etsy shop. (I buy on Etsy sometimes & rarely remember who I bought from - just that it was Etsy.)

But first you have to figure out who is your Audience? Who is going to buy what you're selling?
Where are they? Where do they hang out?
How will you reach them? How will you show them what you have/what you can do?

ie: my audience is publishers (they buy stories/commission illustrations)
They hang out at work & on twitter/instagram, at conferences, etc. I keep a list of publishers I'm interested in working with & their contact info.
I can show them what I do by sending out postcards/emails/posting my work on social media with the right hashtags ie #kidlitart & twitter pitch parties - all of this self-promo stuff links back to my portfolio which is on my website.

I also do art on the side but I don't really promote that as much - mostly word of mouth or applying directly to opportunities that fit with my schedule. But that's where my facebook posts come in handy - to remind my network that I'm still doing art.

Networking is HUGE - word of mouth. So get to know people - local & online. Make the right connections and opportunities will open up.

Also any opportunity you have to learn about business/entrepeneurship take advantage it will really help! There's lots of free info online re: business plans & marketing for artists too.



#5 - June 14, 2018, 06:06 AM

Global Moderator
Poster Plus
  • ***
  • SCBWI Member
  • SCBWI PAL
  • SCBWI Region florida
Do you have a monthly newsletter?

#6 - June 14, 2018, 10:41 AM
ROYALLY ENTITLED (inspirational/historical YA) and OOPS-A-DAISY (humorous MG) out now.  http://www.melodydelgado.com/

Member
Poster Plus
  • *
  • SCBWI Member
  • SCBWI PAL
  • SCBWI Region sfnortheastbay
Many can relate here. For myself, few things feel more peculiar and *wrong* than the "look at me" of self promotion. I've been doing some, but with reluctance and I believe it shows.
Some folks, let's face it, are just very good at it, and good for them.

I think marla-lesage's^ advice above is very good. Social media is an urban jungle to navigate. But start with having your own website where you control the look/feel/content, and it's static. Go on from there.

(Full disclosure; I'm not even comfortable with my site and visit it(i.e. add and amend) infrequently. That's just the way it is. But at least I've been "findable"  :trenchcoat  if anyone's looking.
#7 - June 14, 2018, 03:15 PM
THE VOICE OF THUNDER, WiDo Publishing Aug 2012
THERE'S A TURKEY AT THE DOOR, Hometown520 July 2011

www.mirkabreen.com
http://mirkabreen.BlogSpot.com

Members:

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.