This week I have received emails and phone calls from two new clients asking for commissioned work. Woo Hoo! How cool is that? Both are custom gifts and I am pleased that they thought of my work when wanting to commemorate their special events. One commission is a first communion gift from a grandmother who was the recipient of one of my pieces a couple years ago. She had my business card on the back of her piece and sent me an email. The second was someone who attended the American Craft Council Show in March and kept my card. She called yesterday and is excited to be able to utilize my work in a gift for a newly adopted twelve year old.
A couple points here, they may be obvious but I am going to make them anyway! We take great care in framing my work and provide a professional job no matter the size of the piece. WE also take care to package unframed or in clean, clear self-sealing bags. We ALWAYS attach a copy of my business card to the back of the piece, framed or unframed. And here it paid off. The first client has admired my work in her dining room for years, and when she wanted a piece for her grandson, she thought of that blessing. Having received her own piece, she knew my work and how much it meant hanging in her home. In fact she told me that her children are already bickering over who will get that piece of art when she ‘departs this earth’. The second client wanted something special for the twelve year old who is being adopted for the second time…I can only imagine the full gamut of emotions that little girl is feeling as she heads down this road again. This client was not sure what she wanted, so we are still nailing down the text for this gift, but she needs it by the end of the month…so I will get busy this weekend.
Both are new clients, both found me via a business card. I carry them in my purse at all times, I have them in my briefcase, I put them on the back of framed and unframed art, and I keep them in full supply in the gallery and my studio. I send them out in thank you cards and I hand them out at the bank. Whenever anyone asks me what I do, I tell them I own an art gallery, that I am an artist, and then hand them my card. I also have an ‘elevator’ speech ready at all times. The elevator speech, for those who don’t know, is a thirty second synopsis explaining my art to a stranger who has never seen my work. I tell them just enough to make them want to see my work, hand them the card, and invite them to review our website, visit our gallery, or join us at the next show. Handing out that little 2”x3.5” piece of paper is like planting a seed. I don’t know when it will come up or what size it will become, but each seed is worth planting.
If I don’t show enough interest in my work to share it with people I meet, then why do it? I am more motivated than ANYONE I know (including my wonderful family, husband, fans) to do this ALL the time, so I had better get busy planting those 2”x3.5” seeds. And by the way, a box of business cards is about $25…I have already recouped 30 times that amount since the show in March…powerful seeds! Keep planting!