It can be all too easy to lose sight of the purpose of your creative business - why you do what you do and how best to manage and promote your work and business to meet your market is a topic that overwhelms many of us - the on-line aspect particularly!
There are so, so many choices out there - Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Blogs, etc ..... and trying to spread yourself over all these platforms can seem overwhelming, time-consuming, confusing and plain hard work.
Personally, if I feel negatively about a task I have no desire to do it, and if I have to, well, it's probably not going to be done to my best ability for a start. You too? Yeah, no-one really wants to do something their 'supposed' to!
On the flip side, these days, an on-line presence is essential for informing your current customers and building your presence to secure new ones. But it doesn't have to be hard - really, truly, it doesn't!
Let's start with this simple statement - You don't have to do everything!
Instead, start with finding your groove and focus on the platform that resonates with you.
Love catching up with people on Facebook? Develop your page/brand there by informing your customers, sharing new work, asking questions about their preferences related to your craft type/products, offering insights into how you work, latest happenings etc.
Are you into Twitter? Focus on short sharp tweets similar to above, include a good mix of visual links to photos, listings etc as well as plain text.
Passionate about longer stories and writing? Make your blog your place to shine - develop a calendar of posts for the year imagining your ideal customer and targeting them while telling your 'story'.
Tops at taking great photos of your work and the things that inspire it? Instagram, Pinterest are your friend!
When you're regularly and consistently engaging with your customers and followers in a place and way that you enjoy showing who you are and what your brand is about - you'll not only have fun, you'll get results, grow your networks, and attract the right people.
To beat the overwhelm and refocus I suggest repeating the following quote a few times! ...
Follow that with a plan (write it down). Also jot down some things you enjoy sharing with your followers - new work, processes, tips, background about you, annecdotes, events - all make for great ways to develop your 'story' and encourage customer loyalty and engagement.
Then start implementing it. Begin by using the platform that you've identified as being tops for you - you can feed from it into other on-line areas if you like - eg if blogging works for you - set up your Facebook page and/or Twitter account so your blog posts auto-post to them when you hit 'publish'. A little word of warning though - don't ignore the other platforms altogether, your Facebook followers aren't going to want to see just a series of links to your blog posts. The odd status post, question, new product photo or other interraction will be necessary :).
So remember - the aim of the game is to carry through the excitement you feel for your new product, work or event to your audience making them committed and interested in you. How you do it, is up to you!
Care to share? Let us know how you like to interact with your followers (include a link so we can check you out)...