Episode 216 – New Markets for Artists / Real-Time Chatting/Messaging

Real-Time Chatting/Messaging

Recently, I was using Facebook and making use of the chatting or instant messaging option. In essence, that means privately chatting in real time on Facebook. I had been emailing a curator and I had even had a meeting with him. Although the meeting was good  and he wanted to work together, I could not get a reply from him when I sent a follow- up email. He had asked me to send him emails but was probably too busy to answer

them. I wanted to make sure I would be working with him as planned, and then one day I was on Facebook and I saw that he was online and available to chat.” So I sent him a message, something like, “Hello, I wanted to ask you . . .” Just like that, in response to an unfinished sentence, he wrote back right away: “What can I do?” So through quick chatting in real time, we sealed the dates for an exhibit. Facebook chatting can be very useful this way.

Immediate  Answers

Facebook chat is really a powerful little tool because it’s even more intimate than writing messages or emails. When you engage someone in a real-time conversation, it is like having them on the phone, because you can go back and forth very quickly. Once you have become friends with someone on Facebook, you can open the chat window to see if he or she or any of your friends are online at the moment. If they are online you can open up a chat with them by just saying hello or commenting on something that they have done recently. Can this be obnoxious? Yes, but so can email and anything else if you use it in an impolite or intrusive way. If your messages and chats are kind and sincere, you should be able to get kind, sincere responses from the people you are trying to reach. In the case I just mentioned, chatting helped me to seal a deal, which was very satisfying.

To learn more about Brainard Carey and his services for artists, or to take a class from him, click here.  To join one of his free weekly webinars, click here. To download the workbook mentioned in this series, click here.

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Episode 215 – New Markets for Artists / A Word of Warning about Facebook Games

A Word of Warning about Facebook Games

As you may already know, there are games you can play on Facebook which tend to involve inviting your friends to play with you, from Scrabble, which I love, to games like Zombies, where you “bite” friends to turn them into zombies, to games where you make a farm or build a zoo. When friends invite you to play one of these games, it is tempting. I first learned about Facebook when a curator invited me to create a Facebook account, and the next thing I knew he was biting me and asking me to be part of the Zombies game. I couldn’t believe it—it seemed so childish—but I did it, on the basis that he was (and is) a very important person for me to know. I ended up getting addicted to the game and started biting all my friends. That is how these games are designed; they’re made to be addictive so that you’ll invite your friends to play them.

Game Problems

But here comes the problem. These games can be designed by any independent software developer who wants to make them. Most designers aspire to create a game that will be used by millions so that they can profit from it somehow. Other designers have darker ambitions, like getting into your friends’ accounts. Whenever you decide to accept an invitation to join a game, a dialogue box will open that tells you what information the game has access to, and that information will usually be a list of your friends. That means by clicking the “allow” button, you are giving it permission to use all that information. I strongly suggest you refrain from playing any of these games. It is because of them, in part, that Facebook accounts are now getting spammed, like those annoying posts you might see from people who are actually your friends, saying things like, “I got a free iPad, I can’t believe it! Click here to get yours.” When you click the link you are shown sites that mimic Apple’s real site and then they ask you for your zip code, email, and whatever other information they can get from you. There are tons of these types of scams, and their common goal is to get your email address so they can send you spam directly. Beware, and try not to participate in these games unless you are designing one!

To learn more about Brainard Carey and his services for artists, or to take a class from him, click here.  To join one of his free weekly webinars, click here. To download the workbook mentioned in this series, click here.

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Episode 214 – New Markets for Artists / List of Targets

List of Targets

The next step for you to take at this level is to begin making a list of people you want to meet. If you don’t know who you want to meet, you can begin by searching for art in your geographical area, or you could look at the Facebook page of a local museum and see who their friends are. Some of those people will be collectors you could meet with. The key to finding a market for your art lies in making relationships with people who can help you. You will meet some people who are interesting and some who are not, which means that you will have awkward meetings and enjoyable ones, too.

Take These Steps

Make a plan to contact four new people every week through Facebook. That means not just sending one note to a bunch of people, but rather sending an individual Facebook message to someone you have found who collects or curates art or owns a gallery. This should be someone who is near you or near a city or neighborhood you could easily get to. The reason you give for wanting to meet can be simple: You are trying to meet more people and want to talk about art, that’s all. Make a list of at least ten people, and after committing to writing a certain number of letters per week, make it your job to pursue and make new friends in the flesh through Facebook. If you do this, you will be taking advantage of one of the greatest benefits of the platform, though certainly not the only one.

Commenting and Communicating with Institutions

You should also look at galleries and museums you enjoy and “like” them on Facebook. That will make them show up in your news feed, and then you should occasionally comment on something or “like” one of their shows. This will put you on their radar, and they will have a tendency to click on your page and see who you are and return the favor. Put up images regularly on your Facebook page and tell your friends about your art, also ask questions. This will stimulate conversation and spread the word about your art.

To learn more about Brainard Carey and his services for artists, or to take a class from him, click here.  To join one of his free weekly webinars, click here. To download the workbook mentioned in this series, click here.

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Episode 213 – New Markets for Artists / Real-Life Connection through Facebook

Now That You Are Using Facebook

Just like in the art world itself, on Facebook you need to make friends with interesting people who are involved in the arts and are a part of the community you belong to or want to belong to. The easiest way to find the right kind of friends is to look at art publications or even well-known personalities in the art world. The Facebook page of Jerry Saltz, a New York art critic, has the maximum or about five thousand friends on it, and among them are tons of New York City art world personalities, from collectors to curators, museum directors, writers, and artists. In fact, the Saltz page in particular is very popular, because he manages his page with a certain savvy, and it shows. He has a talent for posting questions and making statements that generate comments in return, sometimes hundreds of them. Those comments are the art world talking to itself. All of the commenters are involved in the world of art, especially the New York world of art. Reading their conversations will not only provide you with insights into that world, it will help you to familiarize yourself all its key players.

Real-Life Connection through Facebook

Facebook is incredible in its ability to make real-life connections and meetings with curators and collectors possible for you. As you build your network of friends on this platform, you can also send messages to them easily. In fact, you can send a message to almost anyone on Facebook without even being their friend. I discovered this as I was looking through the friends of a curator whose page I found by searching for the word “curator.” As I was looking at different people who were friends with the curator, I saw that some were art collectors. I looked at what the collectors were saying on their walls and commented on it or “liked” it. Then I would send them a direct message, even if I wasn’t their friend, by using the “send message” option.

Facebook  Messages

One of the nice things about sending messages within Facebook is that Facebook inboxes are largely free of junk mail, so people actually read their messages. Once, I decided to message a collector who lived in New York City, and I asked her if she would have lunch or coffee with me so that  I could introduce myself. Remarkably, she wrote back right away and gave me her assistant’s cell phone number. I made a time and met her, and it was the beginning of a lasting relationship. I messaged a museum director the same way, and I went out for coffee with him, just to get to know more about him and see if there was something we could do for each other. For all the criticism that social networking gets for being isolating and not “real” enough, I say that if you want it to, you can use it to set up meetings with people in the flesh who can help you and support you or just become real, lasting friends.

To learn more about Brainard Carey and his services for artists, or to take a class from him, click here.  To join one of his free weekly webinars, click here. To download the workbook mentioned in this series, click here.

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Episode 212 – New Markets for Artists / Facebook: Setting Up Your Account

Facebook

This is the platform almost everyone has heard of, and it has ushered in a whole new age and changed the way we manage information about our friends and relatives. For artists, it has created a new way to share images and information. Facebook also turned a college student into a billionaire CEO, who wears jeans and a casual shirt in place of a suit. The meteoric rise of Facebook seems likely not to be short-lived, as we are all contributing to it by providing Facebook not only with our own personal information but with our friends’ information, too. Facebook is constantly evolving, updating itself every day in an effort to balance an uncluttered user experience with advertising revenue needs and privacy concerns.

Facebook: Setting Up Your Account

After signing up for Facebook with a secure  password  you can enter some information about yourself, which, for the time being, I would keep to a minimum: just your name and your college, or as little as is necessary for you to move forward. Once you are set up on Facebook, you will notice that you have no friends. When you’re first starting out on Facebook, the main  goal  is to add  friends.

You can do this automatically by letting Facebook use your address book to send invites to all of your friends, or you search for and add people you know on Facebook one by one. As you look at a friend’s page, you can look through all of their friends, and chances are you share a friend or two. Those are the people you can start adding right away. Those friends-of-friends are the new friends you are making. Once you have added them, they have to accept you as their friend and then that’s it. The next step is to write something at the top of your page every time you sit down and look at Facebook. This is the “status” and it shows up as an empty text field. Make it easy on yourself and start by saying something inconsequential, like, “I just ate lunch and am going for a walk.” Write something new once a day or every time you look at Facebook. You will notice that people will comment on what you have said and you can reply to those comments, starting a conversation.

To learn more about Brainard Carey and his services for artists, or to take a class from him, click here.  To join one of his free weekly webinars, click here. To download the workbook mentioned in this series, click here.

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