Once you’ve uploaded your designs on Inktale, it might be tempting to think that your job’s done. Actually, you’re just getting started. Now it’s time to make sales. Of course, you may simply get lucky and someone might notice your work purely by chance – after all, this is one of the benefits of an online marketplace. People come to Inktale to browse cool print products, and they might happen to find your brand. But why not increase those odds yourself?
So let’s take a look at some of the ways how to make your first sale arrive faster!
Optimize keywords and artwork titles
Make sure that your artwork titles and keywords are in tiptop shape. If you choose keywords that accurately describe your design, it will be easier for customers to find just the thing that they’re looking for. You can add up to 10 keywords, but don’t go overboard – stick to the ones that actually reflect the design. People looking for images with cats won’t be too happy to see pictures of dogs cluttering their search results.
Promote your print products on Facebook & Twitter
It’s even more important to ensure that customers come to your Inktale profile page purposefully to see your artwork, and this is where your own activities come into play. A good place to start is social media.
You most likely already have some presence on social media platforms like Twitter and Facebook. Whether it’s a personal account or a dedicated artist’s profile, you can start promoting your online store there. You can either focus on some specific artwork or products, or you can just link to your artist profile page on Inktale with all your designs.
Don’t oversaturate your social media feeds with promo links – make sure that you mix it up with fun and engaging content to help build relationships and brand loyalty. While these posts may not directly lead to sales, your customers will get to know you better. They’ll also remember you when they’re looking to buy the type of product that you offer. Your followers will simply get bored if you only ask them to buy, buy, and buy.
If Inktale’s your first venture into ecommerce and you don’t have a large follower base yet, don’t worry! Everyone starts out somewhere. Don’t be shy to share your work with your friends and family – they might become your first customers, and they can help advertize your store via word of mouth (an extremely important form of marketing) with likes and shares.
Those of you who are more experienced or simply feel like experimenting a bit can give Facebook ads a try. It might take some time and effort to master this form of advertising (and you’ll need some budget to invest as well), but it can be well worth it. Facebook offers a huge market of potential customers that you can tap into.
Forums are another great place where you can share your artwork. Find the sites where your potential fan base might be hanging out and dive right in!
Share your designs on Instagram
There’s one social media platform that can be particularly enticing for artists and designers – Instagram. With 700 million users, Instagram is a massive market to explore. And, as it’s a visual platform, it’s THE place where you can truly shine as an artist, showcase your designs, and find new fans.
If you’d like to build your brand on Instagram, consider switching your personal account to a business account. This will give you access to various stats and will let your fans get in touch with you easier. Sharing links on Instagram is famously tricky – links appearing in comments or photo descriptions are not clickable. But you can always link to Inktale in your “Bio” section on Instagram.
One of the things that rule the world of Instagram is hashtags. Jump on trending hashtags, participate in regular activities (like #MotivationMonday, #FridayFunday etc.), or create a unique hashtag for your own brand. As your fan base grows, people will also start using your brand’s hashtag. You’ll be able to easily find the pics which you can then regram, encouraging others to buy.
Play around with the number of hashtags that you use. Instagram allows up to 30 hashtags, so you can experiment and find the sweet spot that ensures the greatest response. See which hashtags increase the interaction rate, and which ones don’t have the desired effect.
Explore Tumblr’s community
Another network that you might explore is Tumblr – something of a cross between a typical social network and a blogging platform. Tumblr has around 230 million monthly active users, and more than half of them are in the 18-34 age group. Like Instagram, Tumblr is a great place for visual posts – almost 80% of all posts are photos.
On Tumblr, it’s important to take advantage of tags, which function similarly to hashtags. Tumblr users can track tags that they’re interested in, and if you tag your post accordingly, it will appear in the feed when users browse the tag. You can also build a base of followers who’ll see your posts appear in their dashboard feeds when you’ve shared something new.
One thing to keep in mind with Tumblr is that the sense of community on this platform is extremely huge – more so than on any other platform. Be ready not only to promote your own work, but also reblog other users’ posts, participate in discussions and maintain the feeling of community. Tumblr users skewer towards the younger side, and if you find the right strategy to posting there, you can grow a particularly passionate following.
The bottom line is – get out there and try to get people interested in your work! Don’t be shy to share your story and your inspiration behind your designs. The personal touch can help people relate to your work, and you’ll be more likely to convert them into paying customers.
Don’t forget that once you start making sales, you’ll be able to see the info about your customers on your Inktale profile. This will give you a chance to promote your work to them later via email as well.
Are there any marketing strategies that you’ve tried out and that you know that work? Or perhaps you’ve had some mishaps in the past that you’ve learned from? Share your tips in the comments below!