Q: I’m trying to get out of doing shows altogether. I’m aging and it is just too difficult for me to travel. What options are available to me?
A. As a large portion of the population ages, many of us will be faced with figuring out how to continue to make a living with reduced physical resources. For sure craftspeople accustomed to working independently in their own studios will find the most creative solutions to elder earning.
Hopefully you have been building and maintaining a mailing list. Now is the time to come up with new and interesting ways to put it to use.
No doubt you have been holding a holiday sale each year. Why not expand and host a series of studio sales at major buying times in your area? This could include wedding season, graduation and of course any local celebrations.
Printing a great brochure and mailing it to your out-of-town customers is another way to build sales and stay home.
There is also our new best-selling tool, the Internet. You can approach the Internet in two basic ways. The simplest way is to put your work on an established site. Look into www.wholesalecrafts.com and see if they might work for you.
Putting together your own site is more complicated and expensive; however, with the double-digit growth of sales on the Internet, having your own site could be very profitable.
Developing these new marketing approaches will require money to launch, take time to develop, and will need to be managed, but you do it from home. So why not redirect the money you are not spending on travel and booth fees to these new businesses?
Donald Clark is the author of Making a Living in Crafts and was a partner in Ferrin Gallery for 25 years. In addition to writing, he is currently a consultant to artists, a personal property appraiser, and a collection manager. He also continues to create his constructions that have been shown extensively and collected internationally.