This is a revisiting and updating of an old post written way back in 2013, Why Your Creative Business Needs a Business Plan. I know you’ll love my take on this concept and it will really help you sell more art.
If you hang out with me on this blog, you’re likely also reading advice from several other experts about how to sell your art.
Perhaps you’ve even got a growing (and dizzying) collection of unread pdfs, unwatched videos, and un-listened-to audio recordings that just might contain the one nugget of wisdom that will turn things around for you.
I’m not going to get into that crazy idea too much, except to tell you there isn’t “one nugget of wisdom”. You’ve got to learn what’s essentially a “lifestyle” for your business.
But you can’t learn how to run the lifestyle of your business if you’re not sure what you are working toward or what steps are likely to get you there.
YOU NEED A ROADMAP.
And that roadmap is what we call a “business plan” in the entrepreneurship world.
It’s a scary phrase – business plan – for most people because a quick google will turn up words like “projection” “SWOT” “executive” “operations” and “competitive” just to name a handful.
You may know most of those words, but they just aren’t things that you feel confident in attacking.
I hear from artists all the time – where do I start?
And when I say – with a business plan.
They kind of panic.
But a business plan doesn’t really have to be pages and pages of text, chock-full of charts, and impossible to stick to.
YOUR BUSINESS PLAN CAN BE CREATIVE… AND STILL BE SMART.
And you need to create one so your art can turn a real profit for you because a business plan gives you clarity and direction.
It’s overwhelming and confusing to run a business, as evidenced by the virtual piles of pdfs. You don’t always know what you should be working on and this lack of clarity stops your business in its tracks.
But if you have a business plan, when you feel like giving up you’re able remind yourself of the vision and your realistic plan to get there, making it feel utterly doable again & kicking that fear and stress to the curb.
Then you can easily refocus and get yourself back on track because the plan tells you how.
Business plans are also great at keeping you focused on the most-likely-to-buy people.
You need that target market, that perfect customer, in your vision at all times in order to sell the most art and connect the most deeply with fans.
When you write a business plan, you’re forced to identify that person. And you can continually revisit that to keep yourself from wasting time where it’s not likely to work (or even be appreciated).
But business plans aren’t just about focus – they also cause you to evaluate whether it’s possible for you to make a living in your business (and allow you to design a better business if it’s not).
That’s the most foundational aspect of running a business – can it make enough money?
And if you don’t have a business plan, you might not know whether it can.
The best part is that a business plan even takes it a step further – you’re able to actually watch how that money comes to life so it’s not just a theory anymore.
Planning might not be fun (though I think it usually is once you get in there!) but you can’t argue with the results.
BUSINESSES THAT PLAN GROW MORE THAN 60% FASTER.
(There’s a study on that one.)
And they get to enjoy less stress, more confidence, and more control over their business.
Have you created a business plan?
I’m thrilled to help you with it if you haven’t. I’ve got this fantastic course just for artists that walks you through the process. If you sign up below, I’ll send you all the details in a few days when it’s ready for new students.