John I enjoyed the post, but I don’t agree that just being yourself and not worrying about (social media) marketing will typically lead to success as one defines it. I want to believe it, but I don’t as a result of personal experience and that of others in the San Francisco performing arts community, for example.
If you’re just interested in doing your art and don’t care about taking it the next level, ok you don’t need to worry. But let me give just one simple example. In order for me to perform my rock opera I need a real piano (a good one) and the appropriate venue. This requires a certain number of people in the audience to justify the cost. Need to do social network marketing/advertising and build up my network to do that. If you’re a band and want to enjoy the energy of the audience and meet interesting people, and exchange ideas you need to develop an audience. In San Francisco, the best musicians often get little audience while the mediocre ones who do a lot of social networking get the attention. There are countless other examples.
I’m thinking some additional ways to look at this:
If your art/craft requires an expanding audience to reach the next stage in your evolution and you need to do this social networking marketing thing, some of these things might help:
- Focus on social networking activities that you enjoy and get out and network with people in person if that’s your bag. But you still need a reasonable plan
- Allocate a specific amount of time you do social networking and time you just focus on craft. Goto some events just for fun, don’t make the networking only focused on making contacts.
- Support other artists or people in your craft. Join groups to exchange ideas, add new skills, etc
- Do/perform your craft as much as possible with other people / in public (that will accelerate things real fast, develop new skills and perspective)
- If you can afford it, hire an agency or consultant . (Yes I’m serious..,this is only for some people) tell them what you can do and/or like to do and they will help you focus to achieve your objectives and can do some of grunt work that you don’t want to do and help you manage the ups and downs
- Maintain balance in your life and have fun
I’m sure there are plenty more…