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How I Made the Naughty List

My fingers are crossed. Will there be a lump of coal in my stocking this Christmas? Will there be anything under the tree?   You see, I was naughty.   When you're naughty, you make Santa's naughty list -- and that means you don't get what you want.   Why was I naughty? Simply put, I didn't practice what I preach. And I learned an important lesson.   For 2014, I tried something new. I decided my system for getting things done needed an upgrade, so instead of writing out my to-do list each day and reviewing my goal list in my journal, which is always at my side, I converted to a digital solution. Now all my goals and "to do's" are on the cloud, and I can access them everywhere.   Seems like a reasonable solution, but my digital approach failed me -- or I failed it.   Last week I was killing time on an airplane, poking around all the programs and documents on my iPad because I was bored and didn't feel like working. I opened my goals document for 2014 and started checking them off one by one.   Then something terrible happened: I realized I had missed over 30 percent of my annual goals. Gulp.   I also realized that I hadn't opened my goals document for several months. Had I opened [...]

The Land of Danger for Art Marketers

As artists working on our own marketing and branding, we often feel like we’re in the desert. We feel barely able to make it, but then something gives us hope, something gives us the feeling that we’re making great strides — but it’s only a mirage.

When Advertising Is A Bad Idea

Ten Reasons Not To Advertise My clients are often surprised when I tell them not to advertise. Since I own a few magazines, they assume selling them advertising is my only interest. Not every client is ready to advertise, and others may not be a fit for certain magazines or websites, including my own. It depends entirely on their needs and goals.  No one would ever trust me or my people if the solutions we proposed always led back to our magazines. Here are 10 reasons you should not advertise. Ten Reasons Not To Advertise 1. You Don't Know What You're Trying To AccomplishFrequently a meeting with a gallery or artist will reveal that they need to improve their business, but they don't have a specific strategy. They often approach us about advertising with nothing more in mind than "I'm not sure of my goals, I just want to sell more." Though that's a starting point, it's never good to advertise until you have a deep, specific strategy. We can help you work on a strategy, but you must have that in place before you do anything else, or you may waste money and hurt your reputation. 2. You Don't Know Who You're Trying To ReachIt's hard to hit a target when you don't know what it is. It's important to understand where most of your existing customers come from and [...]

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Clobbered By My Own Advice

  The Power Of Repetition  My kids desperately want a dog, but their mother and I have mixed feelings about taking care of their animal once the kids go off to college in three years. But at every turn, when we ask them a question of any kind … like, “What do you want for dinner?” or, “What do you want to do this weekend?” the answer is always, “I want to go get a dog.” Just yesterday my wife saw twin dogs online that are available for adoption. Suddenly the kids went into sales mode to convince us to get one of those dogs. Last night as I walked into my studio there was an 8” x 10” glossy of the dog on my easel. When I went to bed, there was one on my pillow. When I got up this morning, there was one at the breakfast bar. And today when I came to work, there was one on my keyboard. Though I’ve been pretty opposed to a dog for all the practical reasons, I have to admit, each time I see the picture, it melts my heart a little more and I get a little closer to saying yes. In fact, I’ve already gone from a firm “no” to a “maybe,” and I’ve even agreed to go visit and meet the twins this weekend. Of [...]

Your Thanksgiving Demo, and My Thanksgiving Wish for You

Perhaps, as you gather with family and friends this week, and through the holidays, you can change a life or two by offering a little Thanksgiving painting demonstration for those uninterested in football. Maybe you can inspire a child, a teen, an adult, or a senior. It’s never too early or too late. Your willingness to take the time to inspire others could give them the gift you were once given.

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