Easy Preparation For a Better Creative Business in 2018

art_business_success_preparationEasy Preparation For a Better Creative Business in 2018

It’s that time of year again. The overwhelmingly busy sales season, personal shopping for our own holiday gifts, decorating our home and/or office and maybe a bit of traveling, all while rounding out 4th quarter sales for our creative business. When your “quiet time” finally gets here, and you have time to breathe, set aside a bit of time to prepare for an even better 2018.

What does the preparation entail? Is there a checklist? What’s the right path for you THIS year? How will you set reachable goals and attain them? 

We take stock in ourselves each year when setting resolutions, right? We may look at the relationships that soured and the ones that soared, evaluate what happened and how we reacted.  Or maybe we look down at our waistband and think, “Ah… how can I get back to healthy eating?” Just like re-evaluating your personal life as a way to rise above and be better, the best way to move towards a stronger business is to look backwards. You can’t plan ahead if you don’t know what worked, and what failed.

I begin looking back to move forward by finding a quiet space and making time for review. In an artful notebook I handwrite the names of the many clients I’ve coached, graduates of my growth course, the services I provided, workshop I’ve offered, business partners I’ve collaborated with and potential opportunities.  Then I jot down my failings – realistically.  I make note of where I earned the most money and where I made the least, and in each instance I make sure to detail ALL the value I received because many times the non-financial benefits are equal to or outweigh the income.

In addition to the people I served, relationships I cherish, income I made, services I provided and my failures, I also write a list of my accomplishments, no matter how small.  Keeping a running list is a good habit to get into especially for the times when you feel frustrated, beaten down or overwhelmed.

Tips on How to Rise Above the Frustrations of Art Business Building

In addition to your notes, create an image board if you’d like. Anything that will get you to review the past, openly and honestly.

Throughout the year, I make sure to listen more than I speak. I take stock of the areas of business others want to learn, try to find patterns, pinpoint an overwhelming need that I may have missed or highlight a workshop I taught that was overwhelmingly successful. Listening to their financial needs is important too. Is there another grant available to support them? Sponsorships? What about less expensive workshops with a higher minimum student goal? If I don’t take the time to hear my target markets, I can’t support them and grow my consulting business.

One way cherish the relationship that mean a lot to you is to send out holiday gratitude. Sending gratitude is a good way to keep the relationship strong and set up opportunities for more magic in the year to come. Of course if you don’t make your own cards, buy from local artists or hire an illustrator to create an e-card image. Don’t sell when you send the card – keep the holiday card about “thanks”, only.  You can begin to sell again in January.

A Proven Method to Grow Your Art Business and See More Sales

Last important tip: don’t fear letting go of something that just isn’t working. Be vulnerable when reviewing the past year and walk away from people, places and things (products/services) that are no longer serving you or your business. Remember that anything that takes your time away from growth isn’t healthy or beneficial.  For me, when I launch Embrace Creatives, I’ll be giving Detroit Art & Business Institute’s monthly art calls, articles, grants, jobs/gigs to my new entity and streamlining DABI to focus solely on creative business education & consulting.

So be brave, be realistic and be honest while you look back to propel yourself forward.

Comment below to let me know how it worked for you!

Andrea Rosenfeld

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