All artwork must go!
Select pieces up to 50% off!
No reasonable offers will be refused!
Sounds like the giant art sale at the airport hotel, huh? Loud sales proclamations just don't work well when selling fine art. Mentioning SALE seems to cheapen the art.
But we do know that even high-end galleries offer discounts to valued collectors as well as to museums. So why can't artists have their own sales? You can with the right strategies in place.
First, consider any ramifications your sale would have on relationships with gallerists, collectors, or retailers. Plan accordingly with the following 8 tips in mind.
1. Have a reason for the sale.
It can be an anniversary, holiday, birthday, or moving sale, but it should be tied to a reason or event. For example, my sale starting today is a close-out on audio products I will no longer sell.
2. Be very clear about what is on sale and what isn't on sale.
Will all of your work be on sale? All work prior to 2008? Anything smaller than a breadbox? All reproductions? Double- and triple-check the language you use in your sales message to ensure there is no room for misunderstanding.
3. Be honest and sincere with the language you use.
There is no need to hype the sale of your artwork. Remind people of the value they are getting during this one-time offer. The value in my audio sale is 29-38% off all audio products.
4. Create a sense of urgency.
If your sale doesn't have an ending, there's no reason for people to act quickly. A typical online sale is about 3-5 days. You'll need a longer time period if it requires opening up your studio to guests.
5. Extend your offer to your collectors first.
Your collectors have already purchased similar works from you at a higher price. They might not be happy to learn that they could have gotten it at a lower price if they had waited. Make your collectors happy by sending them a personal letter well in advance of your starting sale date and offering them first choice (and maybe even a little extra discount). Perhaps you call it a Pre-Sale for Collectors Only.
Rather than using email for your collectors' announcement, opt for a distinctive letter sent through the postal system. This will make your collectors feel special.
6. Set up a special sales page on your website or blog.
This is critical! There are too many distractions on your website home page. By directing traffic to a special sales page on your site, you can better facilitate the next action. See my sales page at http://artbizcoach.com/sale
7. Don’t hold too many sales.
If you're announcing sales frequently, buyers will know there's probably another one coming up around the bend. They'll wait for your next sale to purchase from you.
8. Provide a call to action.
Don't assume people will know what to do. Tell them where to click, whom to call, or how to email you for more information. For instance, if you want to take advantage of my closeout audio sale, go to http://artbizcoach.com/sale.html
Don't forget that the sale ends at midnight ET on Friday, July 16. [outdated link]
FINAL WORD: There's no reason you can't have a sale, but you want to make sure you've covered all of the details before it's announced.