fbpx

want to know my secrets? sign up for a list of my favorite resources!

May 7, 2019

I’m here to tell you exactly HOW I doubled my Pinterest stats in one month, for free. I realized a few months ago that I needed to utilize this platform more (for reasons I’ll share below) and I’m excited to share what I learned along the way.

Double Your Pinterest Stats in One Month

Do you know where your ideal clients are hanging out? Which platforms are they most active on, and which conferences are they hanging out at? You might immediately jump to a specific platform, but to be frank, you could be totally wrong! I’ve spent a lot of time planning content for Instagram over the years – because it’s where I enjoy spending my time the most. I mostly use the platform to share my work, and I assumed that’s why my followers were there too. After some research, I realized that a lot of my following is full of my peers (hey that’s you!), so I changed the way I approached the platforms, and looked into my other platforms too!

FIND YOUR PEOPLE & YOUR PLATFORM

First, figure out where your people are – are they hanging out in facebook groups, looking for your services on Instagram, getting into witty conversations on Twitter, or are they spending most of their time on Pinterest? While there are probably dream clients on each one of the platforms, I’m going to focus on Pinterest today, and how I increased my traffic in ONE MONTH FOR FREE.

DELEGATE

I love delegating. When I first started working for myself, I wore too many hats, and didn’t wear them all well. Now, whether it be a system or a person, I’ve found ways to make my life easier by handing off tasks. For Pinterest, I looked at both options, and decided to do my research and try to make the platform work best for me before investing in a Pinterest Manager (yep, that’s a thing!). I started by hopping on Pinterest and searching for articles about growing your account, and using it to get people to your site. I read them, took notes, and got to work. The one common thread I noticed was people talking about Tailwind – a Pinterest scheduling app. I actually already had the app, but hadn’t really used it much because I didn’t understand it (evidence that you get out of things what you give in), so I decided to give myself one month to learn what I needed to, and see how it goes. Using an app is absolutely a form of delegation, it’s affordable, and helps you be more effective with your daily tasks. Once you’ve finished the free trial – the app is 9.99, which is a small price to pay for delegation!

THE APPS

Within a day I started seeing results. I wasn’t looking for more followers, but more clicks to my website, and more views on my content. Over the course of the month I actually doubled my average views, and I know to keep up with it will require dedicated time and energy. The app is super easy to use, you add an extension to your browser (I use Chrome) and instead of pressing the pinterest button, you can click on the tailwind Icon, and schedule your pins. The program automatically spaces out your pins, making your account more active and involved throughout the day (instead of just at 1am when you’re wide awake and pinning from under the covers). Here are some things I love about it:

  • Schedule Pins for a whole month – this is exactly what I did. I spent about a week constantly pinning, and spanning them out throughout the month. One day’s work for a whole month of results.
  • Put your popular Pins on Loop – You can have your best content re-appear as if it’s a new pin, but it’s just circulating instead of having the same pin a thousand times.
  • Join Tribes to build community – This is a great way to connect with others, and help each other spread your best content. It’s typically a “one for one” – where you’ll pin someone else’s content in exchange for yours. They’re large groups, and you should find one that makes sense for your brand.
  • Check stats and analytics easily – I saw more blog comments, and figured out my most popular content which helps me create better content in the future.

THERE’S MORE

There’s a ton of other ways to use Tailwind, and I haven’t even scratched the surface, but what I’ve learned so far is working great for me, and is allowing me more time to spend creating the content I want to see in circulation. I’m learning what my customers are looking for, and love the ease of it. There are tons of resources online to learn more about the app, and other systems (like creating custom board covers) but this has been working just fine for me, and I can’t wait to hear how it works for you!

There are plenty of people offering Pinterest management if this all feels like too much work for you – like my friends at Pinegate Road! Either route you decide to go, I hope this helped you figure out which route to go, and that you learned something!

April 29, 2019

Create Animated Gifs on your iPad

When I realized you could make your own Gifs for Instagram stories – I saw a real opportunity to extend my brand on Instagram Stories (one of my favorite aspects of Instagram). I can use my artwork on stories to “jazz it up”, and honestly they’re just so fun to make. It’s exciting to see other people using them and enjoying them too! When I decided to make them, there wasn’t much information online – so I decided it was a perfect opportunity to make a class about it! I read everything I could find, and annoyed the heck out of Giphy support team until I figured it out. Now, I’m so excited to release a second class about it because technology is always getting more advanced and there’s an even faster way to do it now!

If you’re already lost – I’m talking about those adorable “stickers” you can add to your Instagram Stories (an plenty of other places) that feature a quick animation. Learn to Make Animated Gifs on Your iPad

Between the classes (which is are both under 30 minutes) we’ll cover:

  • The two ways it’s GIF is pronounced (it’s a serious internet battle)
  • How to Create them using your iPad
  • How to upload them to Giphy
  • Seeing and sharing them on Instagram Stories!

This class is under 20 minutes, and so much fun – I can’t wait to see all the gifs you’ve created, be sure to tag me on Instagram so I can see them in action!

See you in class!

Be sure to check out some of my favorite artists too! Hello Kristen Long, The Uncommon Place, Molly Jacques, and Adam JK

Take the first class here | Follow up Class here!

join the inbox party!

Sign up to receive irregular (but informative) emails about business growth, and other resources. I’ll even send you a FREE list of all my favorite resources!

April 29, 2019
I hope you’ve been enjoying this series about art licensing! If you missed part 1, part 2 and part 3 – go read them before tuning in below!
Intro to Art Licensing | Pricing
Wahoo! I’m excited to talk about the most frequently asked question about art licensing – PRICING!
As I’m sure you’ve learned, every client has a different budget. Pricing is a sliding scale – how big the client is, how many people will see the project, how many places it will be used, how long the license or contract is for. There’s no one size fits all for pricing, but I’m going to do my best to shed some light on how the licensing industry handles pricing.
Buyers can purchase a license a few different ways. They can purchase the work at a flat fee, a royalty/percentage of sales, a combination of a royalty and flat fee (sort of like a holding fee or advance), or they can purchase artwork outright – which means they are buying the ownership to the artwork in full.
With companies that work with licensing artists all the time – they’ll have a standard rate (or range) that they pay artists. They should also have a contract for you to sign, with their terms on it, since they do this often. However, you should have also have a list of terms and red flags that you look for. Don’t be afraid to negotiate, and ask for changes if you’re not comfortable with the contract.
One interesting things about royalties is that you don’t know how much income to expect before the piece is on the market. You can ask for some numbers from the client, but you won’t know anything exact for a few months (sometimes longer). Production takes a long time, so if someone purchases Christmas art from you in January – you may not see those royalties until the following year once the product is on the market. I’ve been disappointed by royalties, and blown away – so it’s a good idea to ask for some figures if you’re concerned about payment.
It’s also important to note that depending on your terms, you can license the same artwork more than once. You can license artwork A to both a greeting card company, and a fabric company –  as long as the terms aren’t exclusive. This helps you to build both consistent income, and a recognizable style.
I know – you’re like BUT HOW MUCH MONEY?! As far as royalties goes – it depends on the scale of the company  you’re working with, and the product. 4% of a greeting card is a lot less than 4% of a yard of specialty fabric – even if they sell the same amount of units. If your artwork takes 9 hours to create one piece, a flat fee may not be the right path for you. Remember that you can generate revenue from the same piece if more than one company licenses it.
Remember to READ contracts, know how long each piece takes you to create so you can determine your worth and value. Create a portfolio that’s strong, approachable and would work well on a variety of different products. Are you comfortable giving up the rights to your artwork, or signing exclusive contracts? Can you wait a year to see royalties, or are you more comfortable working on traditional freelance jobs? Remember, you’re the boss, so find what works best for you!

My friend Katie and I launched a course all about this, Art Licensing for Letterers! We both had similar introductions into the licensing world, and are so excited to dive WAY deeper into these topics with you in class. We’ll share real-world examples, a peek into our process, and REAL pricing scenarios.

join the inbox party!

Sign up to receive irregular (but informative) emails about business growth, and other resources. I’ll even send you a FREE list of all my favorite resources!

April 26, 2019
I hope you’ve been enjoying this series about art licensing! If you missed part 1 and part 2 – go read them before tuning in below!
This week is all about licensing agents. Licensing is all around you, and even if you’re just learning about it – it’s been around for ages. Think about Disney products – whenever someone wants to use Mickey Mouse – they need a license to do so – and you better believe Disney gets a kickback every time (cha ching).
Intro to Art Licensing Part 3 | Working with Agents
Some examples of licensing include fabric, home decor, greeting cards, stationery, wall art, and more! Because licensing involves a lot of legalities – some artists chose to work with agents. An agent’s job is to help advocate for your work – they talk with the client, show your artwork, book you jobs, and negotiate the terms so you can focus on crafting. Sounds amazing right? Well there are pros and cons – as with any path. A pro – is having someone on your side to help you along the way, and take something off your plate. But before you think that the only way to be successful is to work with an agent, I want to remind you that plenty of people are kicking (so much) ass without one. Some of the cons include giving up a (large) portion of your income to your agent. They’ll take a percentage of your sales as compensation. It’s hard to find the right agent – it should be mutually beneficial and your agent should truly believe in you, your style, and your abilities. It’s totally possible to land big name clients on your own – without a well connected agent. You’ll need to do your research, and split your time between making, and networking – but you’ll keep 100% of your profits. Figuring out the right answer depends on your specific, unique needs and situation.
I’m excited to be teaching a class all about licensing for lettering artists with my friend Katie, called Art Licensing for Letterers!. We both had similar introductions into the licensing world, and are so excited to dive WAY deeper into these topics with you in class. We’ll share real-world examples, a peek into our process, and REAL pricing scenarios.

join the inbox party!

Sign up to receive irregular (but informative) emails about business growth, and other resources. I’ll even send you a FREE list of all my favorite resources!

April 16, 2019

I’m back to shed more light into the world of licensing! If you missed the first part of the series, check it out here.

Intro To Art Licensing | Turn Your Art into Passive Income

IT’S NOT LIKE FREELANCE

Today I’m going to talk about how it’s different from your typical freelance jobs – like branding, web design and so on. My friend Katie said it best – typically, you’ll license artwork that you’ve already created. You’ll create a whole portfolio of pieces that are available (think: spring catalog) and people will be able to shop from it and create contracts/licenses around the pieces they want, and the industry they’re in.

THERE’S PROS AND CONS

There’s pros and cons to this system. I love working on commissions (more traditional freelance work) where I’m given parameters and have to problem solve with the client. When you’re creating your own collections – you can experiment, but you’re hoping to create things that will sell mass market, but also be unique. You need to be motivated, great at art direction, be able to spot/forecast trends, and be ready to design around the market needs (Christmas is apparently all year in the world of art licensing).  It’s a balancing act between finding your voice, and creating work that will sell. I often struggle with trying with this part… my experience having my own product line taught me that my least favorite design will usually end up being the most popular.

If you’re serious about licensing, you should have a portfolio ready to go – not just a collection or two – but a large portfolio that companies can look through that covers your bases. From Christmas (which is always in demand), to baby and birthdays, and everything in between. It’s amazing how you can find a way to draw flowers 100 different ways when the time comes.

I’m excited to be teaching a class, Art Licensing for Letterers all about licensing for lettering artists with my friend Katie. We both had similar introductions into the licensing world, and are so excited to dive WAY deeper into these topics with you in class. We’ll share real-world examples, a peek into our process, and REAL pricing scenarios.

join the inbox party!

Sign up to receive irregular (but informative) emails about business growth, and other resources. I’ll even send you a FREE list of all my favorite resources!

April 10, 2019

I get a lot of questions about the wonderful (and very strange) world of art licensing and surface design, so I decided to start a series to help people navigate the industry. Designers, Illustrators, Lettering artists and fine artists can all get involved with art licensing, but there’s so much information to share that isn’t readily available.

Intro To Art Licensing and Surface Design

MY BACKGROUND

I started licensing about four years ago. I was a freelance designer, just dipping my feet into the world of illustration and lettering. I had an opportunity to work with a wonderful client in the paper goods world, and it was a perfect fit for the type of work I was creating. However, I quickly learned that the project was a royalty percentage of sales, instead of a flat fee – so I had some research to do! I spent hours googling, and getting in touch with industry friends, signed the contract – and made a very important shift in my business.

THE SCOPE

I created about 18 pieces (lettering, quotes, illustration, patterns) for this company to license (use for a specific period of time and terms) – sort of like “renting”. Then, I received a small (but mighty) percentage of sales once the product was put on the market.

THE RESULT

It was incredible to see my work in big box stores, professionally photographed, and shared with people all over the nation! I knew it was time to find more clients. I spent the better part of the next year and a half working on building a licensing portfolio (more on that later) and immersing myself into the world – making new friends, reading articles, researching companies, taking classes on Skillshare, and soaking in everything I could.

HERE’S THE THING

A lot of licensing is sort of “up in the air” – you may create a piece with the idea that i’d be perfect for a greeting card for Trader Joes (yes please), but then a client wants it, and see’s it working so well for a reusable shopping bag. It’s important that you start to think of your art working in multiple ways so you can create pieces that buyers will love, and see a vision for! Buyers often have really cool ideas for bringing a piece to life – like die-cutting, flocking, foils and even pop-ups that are really amazing to see in person!

Over the next few posts, I’m going to share as much as I can about the world of licensing. I’ll help you determine if it’s right for you, and point you in the right direction for resources and industry standards. If this gets your SO EXCITED OMG then be sure to sign up for our class Art Licensing for Letterers!

join the inbox party!

Sign up to receive irregular (but informative) emails about business growth, and other resources. I’ll even send you a FREE list of all my favorite resources!

LET’S WORK TOGETHER