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Well. I can at least say that the average artist's mentality towards marketing never ceases to amaze me.
Either the guys here are young and naive --that's what I hope it is, since still being pure hearted in a time like this is good-- or they are willingly unaware of what's happening around them.

It all started with a question that came to my mind.
Would people be willing to pay a few point in exchange for a feature on a busy page?

How I got to the idea?
Well, I'm doing contests and giveaways now and then. Things for the community, you'd say. To get some feedback, feature stuff, promoting unknown artists, and that kind of stuff. In order to host those contests and giveaways I often need DeviantArt points. Now, I do get a lot of them by sheer donation. But that always seemed a bit empty to me. So I thought up some kind of idea. To give beginning artists the chance to get featured, and make use of the traffic on my page, in order to get their work viewed by people all over the website. Something like 10 points for a feature. Seemed pretty reasonable to me, considering I have to collect all artworks and update my journal regularly... and also considering the average amount of visitors on my page is somewhere close to 1600 a day -- if not more.

The reactions on that I got on the poll, however, honestly surprised me.
That it was like cheating to have people to look at your artwork via a feature, because they should've gone to your page and looked to it that way. It was even compared with being a whore. A bit far fetched, if you ask me. And a bit strange, because many of those people had their artworks submitted to groups. And I assume they didn't all get asked by those groups to put them up. No, they submitted their own work, in order to have them featured, at a group. So people would look at them, inside a group! Not on their own page!

I can imagine people being worried that a feature like that would not be because of skills. A pretty idealistic thought, if you ask me. But I can imagine that. But to my surprise it's those same groups that do a "Comment and I'll feature you" journal. And they're overwhelmed with people commenting in a desperate attempt to get featured. Those artworks are often just placed in the journal. There's no serious quality check, or whatsoever. It isn't about talent. Often you need to fave the journal, watch the artist, write a journal about it, and whatever kind of trick you have to pull off in order to get features. It's the same shameless form of promotion, and still everybody buys it, because it is not about points.

Well, let me tell you my point of view on this;
Those 10 points are worth $0.12. I'm well aware that there are people offering point commissions for those prices. You can find me complaining about that too, because I think those people are absolutely insane by devaluating their art to a mere $0.12. Come on... where's your dignity as an artist when you offer your work for prices like that???

But that aside. Have you ever thought about all those journals that say "watch me, fave this journal, write a journal about my action, and get featured". It's kinda okay if you watch them already. But imagine you don't. You have to watch them for the entire length of their contest. Which means having your inbox spammed with their stuff. Again; this is okay if you're honestly interested in their art. But I can tell you most people who join that kind of actions, aren't there because they like that artist so much. They just want their feature or prize. 
You have to fave their journal, for the mere sake of raising the number of faves and raising the journal to the front page of DeviantArt. You have to write about that shit on your own page, so all of your watchers will be notified about what action you join as well. And then you'll finally get featured. If you want to compare anything with being a whore...
It's similar to those "like and win" actions on facebook. And let's be honest... everybody hates people who do those all the time, and mess up your timeline with all kind of shit you aren't interested in -- not even to mention that there are no formal rules about those giveaways. They don't even have to give away their price. So the chances of winning that kind of stuff are smaller than having an airplane crash on your head. It's just another cheap marketing trick.

Taking all that into consideration, donating just 10 point without the whole watching-faving-promoting-whatever-thing all of a sudden seems very clean and transparent. You don't have to perform all kind of monkey tricks. You don't have to spam your watchers about shit you do halfheartedly, just to gain something. It's just donating a few points, that's all.

Maybe it's because I've worked in (web)advertising for years that I lost my innocent view on how people would think. But I'm well aware of how social media marketing works nowadays. I've seen big company's doing social media from the inside. With paid social media experts and everything. And I can tell you that even if a company appears to be nice and 'genuine', behind the mask it's all about phrasing words on social media in such a way that more people would like the company. So people will buy stuff they don't need, or accept sky-high prices just because "that brand is so good". No matter what you think, it's all about profit.

I can understand the whole artist's view on things. Many people around here are willing to be popular for their talent, and their talent alone. To gain recognition of other people for what they do. Not how well they market their selves. I can honestly imagine most fun comes from people discovering your page by itself and following you, because they like your art. But what wrong would it do to get yourself known? Would anyone know Pokemon if it was never advertised? It's true that most buzz was created when the missingno-thing went viral. But even that was anticipated. Would anyone know that famous writer if his books were never mentioned in the media? People are paid to review books, you know! Would anyone know that famous anime artist if he/she never showed up at a local convention or art workshop?

If you want people to know you, you can't just sit down and expect people to come to you. There are 12 million members on DeviantArt alone. You can't expect people to just magically find you in that maze of user profiles. Not in 2013, when the internet is social media, and every single site is filled with people screaming for attention or recognition. No, they would most likely find your work in a friend's favorites, a group, or a feature. They'll find you, because your work is at a place they could see. And they somehow watched you, because they saw your stuff somewhere, liked it, and clicked the link to discover you had a lot more in your gallery that they liked.

I see most artists having the idea that that marketing is bad. The idealistic thought the attention for their work should be 'genuine', and that marketing makes it less genuine. Although I wouldn't know why marketing would make your work less genuine. If people didn't like your work, they wouldn't watch you, even if you expose them to it. People nowadays are critical about where they spend their time on.

As a marketeer, I can say that many artists possess poor marketing skills. They've always been that way. That's the reason many artists never got the fame they deserved, until they died and somebody else promoted their work. That's the reason they devaluate their work to a mere $0.12 commission. The sole reason why the prices for art are so low. They allow people to see it as a 'fun job', and not take into account the many years of practice that went prior to that. Please don't fall into the same trap. The modern internet era makes it possible for everyone to get their selves out there. To do your own campaign. Yes, it might cost you a bit. Either in time, or money (Or both. Time = money). But the costs are nothing compared to what it was years ago, before the internet era, when you still had to hire an advertisement company and pay for printed media.

Web 2.0. is all about the users. 
You not only allowed to join; you're expected to!
So don't sell yourself short because of some stupid ideals.

(And for the many people asking about the feature for points. I'm not sure about that yet. But if you're interested and want to stay tuned; follow my journals ^^)
Add a Comment:
 
:iconsinnelius:
sinnelius Featured By Owner Feb 8, 2015  Professional Digital Artist
So, how do you market yourself then? Online specific, which is much more time labouring than money, and nevertheless require quick response.
Reply
:iconsinnelius:
sinnelius Featured By Owner Feb 8, 2015  Professional Digital Artist
So, how do you market yourself then? Online specific, which is much more time labouring than money, and nevertheless require quick response.
Reply
:iconsinnelius:
sinnelius Featured By Owner Feb 8, 2015  Professional Digital Artist
So, how do you market yourself then? Online specific, which is much more time labouring than money, and nevertheless require quick response.
Reply
:icondamaimikaz:
DamaiMikaz Featured By Owner Feb 10, 2015  Hobbyist Digital Artist
To be completely honest; I don't specifically market myself as artist, since I'm not professionally working in the art field (I'm having a job in computers).
I have written several journals with tips & tricks geared towards marketing art, though. They're in my journal history. 
Reply
:iconm-a-f:
M-A-F Featured By Owner Feb 10, 2015
You were supposed to click the link in her journal that said: you can't just sit down and expect people to come to you

It leads you to the explanation on how to market yourself~
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:iconsinnelius:
sinnelius Featured By Owner Feb 10, 2015  Professional Digital Artist
That's very nice of you!

And you have a very distinct gallery yourself :)
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:iconhimekanoda:
himekanoda Featured By Owner Oct 3, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
Hmm.. Good article
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:iconsamxi:
samxi Featured By Owner Sep 25, 2014  Hobbyist Digital Artist
I do agree. Selling your self short is like looking down at your own work. If you think your art are great, go for a higher price. :D
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:iconmizdawesome:
MizDawesome Featured By Owner Feb 21, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
I don't think this is whoring out at all! Wth... DA is all about having other people help you promote your art. That's why there are groups. People will never see your work if you keep it under a rock, even if it's amazing!. I've seen a lot of good artists who don't have that many watchers or commissioners and then I see other artists who have really low quality art and they have a tonne of watchers... It sucks but you have to put yourself out there and I think your idea is more than fair!
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:iconhaysiaharuzan:
HaysiaHaruzan Featured By Owner Jan 28, 2014  Student Digital Artist

I TOTALLY AGREE WITH YOU


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:iconflutist:
flutist Featured By Owner Jan 15, 2014  Professional General Artist
I think feature system is ok, valid and nothing shameful.
even random feature without quality check is okay (it is up to the page owner afterall).
but from a semi-idealist point of view it's like accepting a standard of no standard (if you understand what I mean)... and that is a valid opinion too.

:iconlazeplz: So while I'm too lazy for organizing a contest, I'm thinking of some kind of giveaway/beta-comm with game, something like this though that one is designed to favor friends than new people. I don't know... I'm still experimenting with this.
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:iconadastreet:
AdaStreet Featured By Owner Jan 7, 2014  Professional General Artist
Very good! I love it when you talk about this kind of topic, even though I sometimes let all kinds of things build up in my message/notifications inbox and don't read and respond to everything in a timely fashion. anyway, keep up being smart and awesome like you are!
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:iconfreemech:
FreeMech Featured By Owner Dec 29, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
very insightful.
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:iconljartisticintentions:
LJartisticintentions Featured By Owner Dec 27, 2013  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
I am keeping all of my art supply receipts so I know how much I should charge for a single painting of mine let alone if I get hired on to a project that will pay me to do a certain kind of art. that they want me to make for them.

By the way, I made a portrait sketch of a dragon of my own design if you wanted to see it, let me know. ^_^ (I made it in about 30 minutes yesterday evening.) used pencil for it.
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:iconearthbelowthewolf:
earthbelowthewolf Featured By Owner Dec 22, 2013  Student General Artist
I have nothing more to add here ;)
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:icondaftdivision:
daftdivision Featured By Owner Dec 22, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
As an artist who is also an aspiring musician, I feel like this should be read by all who want to get their music noticed, too.
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:iconmandinga91:
Mandinga91 Featured By Owner Dec 21, 2013  Student Traditional Artist
i read this with a great interest and found it really interesting.. have learned a lot about Deviant,Internet and Market...so thanks for the journal!

PD: im not writing any journal about this,i dont want to be a whore ajajajaja
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:iconashlingrainstrom:
AshlingRainStrom Featured By Owner Dec 13, 2013  Student
A few years ago I worked at a boutique. It was new; I started working the first day it opened and it was just me and the owner. We didn't get any business. I mean, it was a busy week if five people came in. The problem was that no one knew we were there because the owner never advertised the store. Even though it was a small town (around 10,000 people I think) and the store was on a main street, because the own never got word out about us she had to close it down after eight months. I really don't understand why people would think that advertising yourself and your product, whether it's clothing or art, is cheating. All your doing is telling people you're there...
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:iconexleston:
Exleston Featured By Owner Dec 11, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
ok, so maybe I am a bit naive... ok, really naive. yet I have another question along that same line. is it being an attention whore if I ask people who / look/ at my art -and maybe even grace it with a comment- to hit the watch button?

I don't have hardly any watchers but I get views, some faves, the occasional comment, and basically the hype over one of my pieces dies with the age of the 'recent uploads' . Is it too much for me to say 'hey! If you like this one, watch me cuz there's bound to be more!' or am I really that native for having reservations about doing it. Because one of the last things I want is to come off pushy, yet I can see that I may need to be more pushy.

and as far as giving up twelve cents for a feature, I think that's more than reasonable. I would pay for that. my only excuse would be that I don't even have any points to exchange because I haven't shelled out the money for them or even the premium membership. but what you've just said has got me thinking I need to.
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:icondamaimikaz:
DamaiMikaz Featured By Owner Dec 12, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Have you tried submitting your works to groups already?
I think that's far more effective than asking random people to watch you :)
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:iconexleston:
Exleston Featured By Owner Dec 12, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
Actually, I hadn't really given that any thought before. You're probably right, that would be a lot better. Like target goups- video game groups for half-life pics, and ect? I could sure give it a shot. if nothing else I'm no worse off than I already am, I suppose.

Hey, thanks a bunch!:D (Big Grin) Your dialog is as imspiring as your art work!
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:icondamaimikaz:
DamaiMikaz Featured By Owner Dec 12, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
YW :)
I like interacting with people here. Many of the people here have interesting story's to tell.
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:iconexleston:
Exleston Featured By Owner Dec 13, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
And that makes you an excellent listener. Thanks again!
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:icondanilov89:
Danilov89 Featured By Owner Dec 10, 2013
Very interesting post, thank you for writing such a lengthy post. I find myself at a crossroad, at a point where my skills are growing fast, but are well above what I could have done 3 months ago. Also because of this, because what I can make is slightly "above" what others can I guess envy appears? Even though supposedly I have 40+watchers the number of profile visitors has dropped greatly. I assume this has happened because people can not relate to my "rookie" skills and also the deeper (and darker) subjects I like to tackle. I dropped having a journal, I dropped clinging to the easy gratification of "oh boy! 3 - 20 people like my last painting". I know I must focus on myself. I do not paint to make others happy, it's my career choice, I Have to Make It and become good at it. So I'm one of those helpless dreamers that believe "oh if I paint it they will come" but guess what? You are right... people hardly take the time, because whatever is beyond their comfort zone or is not "trendy" raises no interest.
I know if you don't get yourself out there you won't get any work, from that perspective 12 cents isn't much to get you known and getting some commissions. Cheers!
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:icondamaimikaz:
DamaiMikaz Featured By Owner Dec 11, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
:hug:
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:icondiscarbia:
Discarbia Featured By Owner Dec 10, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
wow! i didn't even know people thought like that, i mean even the most popular people on dA had to go out and let the community find them. I mean it doesn't mater how good you are if people dont know your art is out there!
i would love the idea of getting featured for such a low price, then people that haven't got so far, and might dont have so many points can show people their art in a effective way :)
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:iconeloylie:
Eloylie Featured By Owner Dec 10, 2013
So what do you say is bad? Is it bad to be an permanent attention whore, forcing people to love your art, and in exchange they get something?
And why do you randomly donate points? What are they for?
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:iconsailorenergy:
SailorEnergy Featured By Owner Dec 9, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Good article there. :) I really agree. :nod: I used to work for Norm Brumms, known for his glass enameled copper sheet nature artworks, but he really suck at business. Someone else had to do the business managing for him, but he still makes all of those stupid business, some against the manager's advices. :facepalm:

  It can be also hard if many artists are very introverted and those who are born deaf, and having social difficulties when growing up. :nod:

I'm a geologist by career so I simply don't have time for marketing stuff and I draw just for fun. :)

Thank you for writing that article! :clap:
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:icondamaimikaz:
DamaiMikaz Featured By Owner Dec 10, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Well... for those being introverted, the internet is sure an outcome. You can get in contact with people without actually having to see them. And you can spend time with others whenever you wish it, without social obligations. Doesn't sound too bad, for an introvert, if you ask me :)
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:iconsailorenergy:
SailorEnergy Featured By Owner Dec 10, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
It depends, yep.  The best thing was regular emails during the "Golden Days" of websites. It used to be so easy to exchange emails. It used to be easy to advetise a website through search engines by typing keywords in filenames and html files.
 but Facebook and other social medias seems to be splintering the internet up like for example, I can't send a message from DA to Facebook. So we'd have to log to all of those different sites and that adds more stress. I did get stressed out from trying to manage several different social medias so I stayed with just DA and my TRSE website. The nice thing is that DA can help me post the pictures links at Facebook, Tumbler and Twitter. :)
     That might be why some artists couldn't do any marketing stuff because it was too stressful for them?
  
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:icondamaimikaz:
DamaiMikaz Featured By Owner Dec 10, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Hmmm... in my opinion marketing has become just so much easier compared to the old days (and yes, I've been there when the internet was still only a bunch of html files). Building, managing and keeping track of a fanbase has never been so easy since social media. Before the social media era, you had to manage a website. There was close to no response and it was hard to keep statistics of your userbase (name, gender, age, location, whatever). It used to be easier to get the attention, though. I admit that. Nowadays the internet is more crowded. This means you have to take more of an effort to keep up. On the other hand; fanbases can expand far faster than they ever could before.
So instead of stressing out, I tend to see the opportunity's of this new community. It's not like the internet is gonna change back to what is was anyway. 
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:iconsailorenergy:
SailorEnergy Featured By Owner Dec 11, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Hmm. It'd depend. :nod: I'm so used to website thing (netscape composer made it so easy) that it was easy for me, but yet, I'm having difficulties with figuring out how to work with current social media area. That makes me wonder if I'm doing it the wrong way.

Yes, more effort and that stresses me out because of my geology jobs.

  Social media do come and go. Facebook's already losing memberships while a new Intragam (I think?) just come out.  So what will the future be like? O_o;

Yep and agreed. It had been a pleasure chatting with you. ^_^ Thanks for the article!!
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:icondamaimikaz:
DamaiMikaz Featured By Owner Dec 12, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Well... social networks are shifting constantly. But it's a challenge :)
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:iconsailorenergy:
SailorEnergy Featured By Owner Dec 13, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Yep and at faster pace, hard to catch up. :/ If I can't catch up with it, it gets frustrating.

Now I need to find out how advertising thing works...
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:icontropicana:
Tropicana Featured By Owner Dec 9, 2013  Professional Artisan Crafter
Damn fucking right you just gave me a lama, you gotta hustle! 
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:iconrenekunert:
ReneKunert Featured By Owner Dec 9, 2013   Traditional Artist
In regards to some of the comments I am seeing: I see it this way...  And this is just my opinion and personal experiences with other artists.

It doesn't matter how much skill you have, honestly.
It is all about who you know and how much time, effort, and money you are willing to sink into it. 
If you have amazing art, but you don't have the cash to get it spread around, you will be a nobody (and even the famous ones weren't famous until after death). 
If you have crappy art but you have money for promotional reps, you can actually make it pretty far. 
If you have amazing art skill and good money, you can make it really far. 

It is the same with any business and art is no different. 

There are those that do it for hobby and make nothing from it.  Good for them.  Nothing wrong with that.
Then there are those that do it for a profession.  Make some cash, hire some agents, get it out there.  Good for them.  Nothing wrong with that either.

Whether the art is good or bad makes absolutely no difference.  What some think is 'shoddy work' is a masterpiece to someone else.  Those complaining about this shoddy work are usually the ones who are unwilling to take the same steps to get the work out there.  And it does take a bit of cash and effort.

Just for the record; I haven't paid for promotion yet, but I would be willing if I happen to run across the chance and had the spare change to make it happen.

As far as it being "just" deviantART, there are TONS of people here on dA.  I have seen deviantART links posted on Facebook from people who just admire the art because they "ran across it".  There are also TONS of people on Facebook.  Then there is Pinterest.
That is a WHOLE lot of promotion, if you ask me. Even if some of it isn't "paid for".
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:icondamaimikaz:
DamaiMikaz Featured By Owner Dec 11, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
I think you pretty much hit the nail on its head :)
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:iconamieku:
Amieku Featured By Owner Dec 9, 2013   Traditional Artist
This is interesting, and definitely true (the artists-suck-at-marketing part). But personally, I'm not on deviantart to get recognized. I just don't see DA as a "serious" site, so I wouldn't pay anything for exposure here. At the same time, I'm still a student and unsure if I'll be pursuing art professionally, but I've run into quite a few DA artists like me.
Just another perspective.
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:iconamieku:
Amieku Featured By Owner Dec 10, 2013   Traditional Artist
Haha well that's probably because I don't really have a "type" of art. But you're right, social networks can't hurt. Sometimes I wonder if we give them too much credit, but who knows where they'll get us in the future.
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:icondamaimikaz:
DamaiMikaz Featured By Owner Dec 10, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
I can imagine DA not having the right target group for your type of art, but I think it doesn't hurt to invest in social media in general. 
It could be a great way to build a social network.
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:icondareme:
dareme Featured By Owner Dec 8, 2013
Amen to this.

You make a lot of excellent points in this article. I think one of the crucial and deadly points here is that "marketing" is seen as something dirty these days.
"Selling your work" is perceived as synonymous with "selling out", which is very bad for the wealth of the individual artist. In this mindset, the only way to sell your work and hold on to your artistic pride is if people just randomly show up on your doorstep and demand to buy your art - without you, the artist, sullying your soul with any sort of pre-sales activities.
The problem is, it's not only the young and nave who operate under this illusion. Our culture as a whole has turned "marketing" into something bad. Partly, I think, that's thanks to all those large corporations you mentioned, who use clever phrasing and any gimmick they can come up with to effectively trick us into buying their crap.

I am happy you are using your influence to make a difference to change this perception. A healthy idea of marketing is one of the first steps of making Art more of an industry instead of a gambling game.

:heart:
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:icondamaimikaz:
DamaiMikaz Featured By Owner Dec 9, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
I've been working at advertisement company's for years, and it has lead me to think a lot about how advertisement works in society.
I admit some of it is indeed dirty, and a lot of it revolves around money. Yet I can see the beauty of getting a product out there that nobody has ever seen there. Or doing an excellent design or good social media campaign. The one thing that I think is important, is that you do it wholeheartedly. Do something because you believe in it. Not because you don't really like it, but do it to earn money anyway. 
Art is something we do wholeheartedly, because we love it. So why would we not want to show it to the entire world?
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:icondareme:
dareme Featured By Owner Dec 16, 2013
"Getting a product out there that no one has seen before" is undoubtedly a great thing - but you don't mean to tell me that's the majority of what advertising does, do you? Something truly unique, fresh and new comes along very rarely. And when it does, I don't mean to say that it "sells itself" - it doesn't, but it's a very different campaign then getting the customer to buy their electronics from your store instead of your competitors.
I totally agree about the beauty of getting a product to an audience. I also think there's nothing wrong with creating want for something, all though some of it seems to be a bit of a conflict of interest. An example:
As a human being, I want people to feel good about themselves and know that they're beautiful just the way they are. But if I want to sell beauty products, I need to make them want to improve themselves, otherwise they wouldn't buy my products. So I need to make them realize they could be better than they naturally are. Now what?

Personally, I am not too worried about this particular dilemma, but it's been in the media a lot. I think too often, advertising goes the route of trying to make people feel less good about themselves or what they have, in order to sell them their product, all though it's not the only way certainly.

However - take a regular person who's lived in a world where this is what advertising was to them all their life. That annoying break on TV when you were shown every reason why your own life was not good enough and you shouldn't be happy with what you have. And then tell this person to "advertise their art". They would think of that. They wouldn't think of simply "getting their art out into the world", because that's not what they've seen advertising do. They see cheesy infomercials and annoying pop-up-ads. Can you blame them for not wanting that happen to their art? I can't. The problem is that they don't actually have a concept of what advertising really is - just getting your work seen by the people who will love it. If they realized that was what it was, I'm *almost* sure most artists wouldn't have a problem with advertising or promoting their art; at least in theory; doing it, as I know, is a whole different matter, and a lot of work, that you could be spending making more art instead. But that's a whole different problem.
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:icondamaimikaz:
DamaiMikaz Featured By Owner Dec 16, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Well... there's certainly a bad image that surrounds advertising as a whole. And that's exactly the idea I wanted people to get rid of.
Yes, there are bad practices of advertising. Just like there are bad practices on nearly any other job on the planet. That doesn't mean that, when you advertise, you automatically do the same. The world isn't only black and white. There are many shades of grey in between :)
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:icondareme:
dareme Featured By Owner Dec 17, 2013
:thumbsup:
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:iconboldbodypromotions:
boldbodypromotions Featured By Owner Dec 7, 2013
I would be happy to help artist advertise!
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:iconcalicara:
Calicara Featured By Owner Dec 7, 2013  Student Writer
My main problem with "point for features" though, it's not that I don't want to promote budding artists, but because it often time promotes amateur artists, often making them wildly popular via fan-art or furries and gives them a false sense of having great artistic ability. This is not to say you can't draw those things and also be good at it, but often I see artists use the same cheap gimmicks over and over on art (ie: shiny wolves via photoshop texture, or furry cats via photoshop texture) and it is these reasons why they become popular. I realize beauty is subjective, but I also believe art should have purpose. (Not just random wolves and cats)

I have often expressed my discontent with accounts such as DAHub, because all it really means to get features on pages like that is that you have money or points.

I know by not featuring myself or asking others to feature me I am severely limiting my audience, but I'd rather pass on and be unknown that just throw myself out there for the sake of being an attention whore. If people like my art, I am glad, but if they don't I don't want them to feel obliged to have to endure it for the sake of money(or points).

I guess my point being, I don't think DA is really a fair way to judge skill level via popularity, because I know lesser known artists who make wonderful art but have few watchers, and artists who make lesser art that have thousands of watchers. People shouldn't be able to peddle their shoddy wares and become icons simply for the fact that they have money (though clearly DA is not the only place we see this kind of abuse.)

I will say though, I am one for groups. Groups, to me, are a much better way to promote your art. At least with groups the watchers can pick and choose the related pieces of art they wish to view, and not just have to view and fav something with great distaste for points.
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:icondamaimikaz:
DamaiMikaz Featured By Owner Dec 9, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
but because it often time promotes amateur artists, often making them wildly popular via fan-art or furries and gives them a false sense of having great artistic ability.
If people still believe popularity is the same as artistic skills, they're just naive. You will only get so far by drawing furries and such stuff. It's true they will make it up to a certain point. They will, however, never make it past that point if they don't change their mindset.

and it is these reasons why they become popular. I realize beauty is subjective, but I also believe art should have purpose
Well... you may not like it. But there's obviously a target group for it. And if they are popular, they've done at least their marketing right.

I have often expressed my discontent with accounts such as DAHub, because all it really means to get features on pages like that is that you have money or points
See it from the other side. It does give everybody a fair chance to get featured. Even if you're just starting out. Isn't that a nice thing too?

but I'd rather pass on and be unknown that just throw myself out there for the sake of being an attention whore
Why would promoting yourself immediately make you an attention whore? Imo, you're an attention whore when you make personal drama in order to get your art known. If you do features to get your art known... it's just marketing. You're doing something art-related to get your art known. Nothing wrong with that.

 I don't think DA is really a fair way to judge skill level via popularity
It's never been. Popularity on DA depends on target group (i.e. anime-art getting more exposure than other types) and marketing. Not on art skill. Although being skilled does help.

People shouldn't be able to peddle their shoddy wares and become icons simply for the fact that they have money
Have you ever looked around? Why do you think there are so many celebrity's out there that are known, but don't posses a single talent. 

At least with groups the watchers can pick and choose the related pieces of art they wish to view, and not just have to view and fav something with great distaste for points.
I am not planning to pay people for faving art. I just ask points in order to put them up. Whether people watch and fave them is entirely up to them.
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:iconcalicara:
Calicara Featured By Owner Dec 9, 2013  Student Writer
"Why would promoting yourself immediately make you an attention whore? Imo, you're an attention whore when you make personal drama in order to get your art known. If you do features to get your art known... it's just marketing. You're doing something art-related to get your art known. Nothing wrong with that."

I don't think promoting yourself in general makes you an attention whore, it's when you do it by putting tons and tons of money into it. For example, say I sell soap. I make pretty decent sales until one day a better brand of soap comes out that is better than mine and significantly decreases my sales profit. So, instead of improving my soap I take a chunk of the profits and invest it into advertising so that people see pictures of my soap everywhere they look thus making them subconsciously want to buy my product even though it's inferior. The more you see it, the more you think it, the more you'll want it. Marketers, I think, use visual hints all the time to promote inferior products especially in places like the food industry. It's ridiculous to think one would want to buy an inferior product simply because they tend to view it more often than superior product (which may not necessarily have as good advertising.)

This is how I feel about DAHub. You can make bad art (bad as in anatomically, compositional, or just overall poor quality), but still get advertised simply due to the fact that you have money (or points.) The contents of the package don't matter, all that matters is how much money you pour into that label. No matter how bad what's inside, if someone with money backs that brand it's gonna be big (Take a look at some of the TV shows on Cartoon Network, like annoying orange. It's annoying and stupid and poor quality, yet it has it's own show on a popular TV network.)

This is not to say you can't both have good art and money, but groups like DAHub enable you to have one and without the other (popularity, but with poor art skills), which I hardly see as fair.

Also, I agree that only limiting your art to what's popular (such as fan-art or furries) and thinking it can also earn you a future is naive in some ways (again, this is not to say it can never happen, but it's very unlikely), why even carry out the misconception in the first place? (Though maybe it's also in part to schools not always having the best art programs, I can honestly say my High School had a crap art program where the teachers didn't give a care what you drew as long as you tried, and it wasn't till college till I really started to broaden my horizons.)

And so why does this all matter? Well, monkey see monkey do. When you an aspiring artists looking to get yourself known, I believe you are more likely to start by trying to copy others. Is this bad? Not always, but it is to a certain extent. I think it's ok to use models, but at the same time I don't think it's good to limit yourself. And when you know your art sucks, because for most of us it's something we learn over time, you shouldn't try and force yourself to the top of the ladder. Popularity isn't equivalent to skill level, yet it does for some set a standard. If people strive to be "popular" their art may not always be the best, but people will look at them with a certain degree of fascination and perhaps also strive to be like this "popular" artist who may not even be any good at art to begin with.

Sorry if I ramble a bit, I like talking about this kind of stuff, because I went through it all too xD, I just kinda wish someone had told me sooner that cats are really not where it's all at. I wonder if then I wouldn't tried to focus more of my High School years on something more unique than just random animal characters...
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:icondamaimikaz:
DamaiMikaz Featured By Owner Dec 10, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
better than mine and significantly decreases my sales profit. So, instead of improving my soap I take a chunk of the profits and invest it into advertising so that people see pictures of my soap everywhere they look thus making them subconsciously want to buy my product even though it's inferior
If you're really think people are that stupid to buy everything that's advertised. Advertisement like that only gets one-time customers. If your product sucks, customers will not return. Hence, no profit. It's true that some company's work like that, but most company's that have that approach will go bankrupt soon enough.

Marketers, I think, use visual hints all the time to promote inferior products especially in places like the food industry
And if people would not like them, they wouldn't buy them again. So there must be at least something likable in that product.

This is how I feel about DAHub. You can make bad art (bad as in anatomically, compositional, or just overall poor quality), but still get advertised simply due to the fact that you have money (or points.)
On the other side; it also gives beginning artists a chance. Those that will get rejected in groups and such. The point that does bother me with DAhub, though, is that you have to fave and watch in order for points. I wouldn't want to go that far, as it indeed feels a bit unfair. I still see nothing wrong with exposure, though. People can determine themselves if they fave/watch, depending on how much they like the artwork.

why even carry out the misconception in the first place?
I never promise to make people popular so they could earn a full income with art. However, it could give them a start in commissions. Most of the people around here are youngster that don't pursue a full career in art. They just do it as a side job. Aside from that; who am I to decide on their future? If they want to do furry-drawing for a job, then let them be.

And when you know your art sucks, because for most of us it's something we learn over time, you shouldn't try and force yourself to the top of the ladder.
This is true. But this is also something artists have to find out for themselves. You can tell a beginning artist that he sucks, but he will only get angry. It's not until they realize what commercial art really is, that they see the need to broaden their horizons. 

Popularity isn't equivalent to skill level, yet it does for some set a standard. If people strive to be "popular" their art may not always be the best, but people will look at them with a certain degree of fascination and perhaps also strive to be like this "popular" artist who may not even be any good at art to begin with
Again; this is your moral speaking here. You'd like a world with all good quality products. While, in reality, that isn't possible.
Not all idols are people you look up to. And it's good that way. Sometimes we need bad examples in order to learn what we don't want with our lives. 
I don't think it's my moral obligation to make sure everything learns from a good source. It's people's own decisions. We can tell them. We can warn them. But most of them have to experience it their selves in order to understand.

because I went through it all too xD, I just kinda wish someone had told me sooner that cats are really not where it's all at
I did go through that stage as well. But I didn't forget about my own ignorance, back then. Even if they told me at young age, I wouldn't have taken it from then. I had to learn it by experience.
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