Pedro Adao spent half his life trying to win his father’s approval. As a kid, he only experienced “tough love.” His father worried about making sure Pedro ended up successful, but that meant criticizing him at every turn. A B+ wasn’t good enough on a math test. He needed to get an A. Having a steady job wasn’t good enough. He needed to make six figures.
So, trying to fill the heart wound left by his father, Pedro started a career in financial services. Watch any movie about Wall Street, and you know the financial services industry is full of cut-throat strategies and high-performance goals.
Pedro even began investing in real estate on the side. His only motivation was to be more and more successful… except more was never enough. He made some risky investments and eventually ended up $3 million in debt.
The bottom fell out.
Do you know why? It was because Pedro was suffering from heart wounds.
Miriam Schulman’s art career DOES NOT look like your typical artist's.
Most artists abandon their art careers for good-paying jobs that pay the bills. Miriam, however, left a six-figure job writing software for Wall Street hedge funds to pursue her passion for painting. She realized there wasn’t a purpose to her finance work. What was the point helping hedge fund managers buy golf courses and vineyards on the West Coast?
So, after having her world shaken by 9-11, Miriam REJECTED the starving artist narrative and EMBRACED her dream of becoming a full-time artist.
She's achieved her goal, and now she makes six-figures a year doing what she loves. I bet you’re wondering how you can do that, too, Startup Nation. You want to pursue your dreams full-time, whether it’s coaching, training, or art.
Here are three tips for escaping the starving artist mindset.
1. Learn how to sell
When Miriam first launched her art business, she was taking pilates classes at a local studio. The owner offered a class that taught students how to sell pilates training packages to other people. Miriam took the sales class, but it wasn’t long until she realized she needed to be selling artwork, not pilates.
But that sales training was invaluable.
Startup Nation, if you’re going to be an entrepreneur, you need to know how to sell. No offense artists, but you’re notorious for being ineffective sellers. Look, you don’t need to put on a suit and hang around used car lots, but you need to know how to get your products in front of the right people. Take an online sales course. Read sales books. If you’re going to make six-figures, you MUST LEARN HOW TO SELL.
2. Embrace technology
Brick-and-mortar stores are no longer at the top of the sales pyramid. The market was already moving toward online sales before COVID-19 pandemic, but now it’s no question that most Americans buy their products through the Internet. This means that having a website and online store is NOT AN OPTION.
Learn the tools and programs that will help your business grow. These might include ClickFunnels, SquareSpace, Stripe, Ebay, Amazon, Etsy and hundreds of other programs that empower regular business owners to set up an online store and SELL.
Putting your art in a local gallery and hoping for $100,000 is not a smart way to run an art business in 2020. Learn how to use technology.
3. Don’t Nickel and Dime Yourself
Too many art businesses refuse to invest in themselves. Art business owners would rather spend five hours finding a complicated workaround for a website store instead of paying $15 a month for the premium package. Is your time so worthless ($3/hr) that you’d waste five hours instead of paying a small monthly fee?
This mindset is part of the starving artist narrative. Money is so tight that you’re AFRAID to spend money. Starving artists can only focus on the present, paying next month’s rent, and making the next sale. But successful artists invest in both tools and people who will help them scale their businesses.
Spend your money wisely to streamline your sales processes. Invest in tools that free you to focus on the very reason you started your business: ART.
KEY TAKEAWAY: Most artists fail to create a full-time business because they adopt a starving artist mindset. Escape that trap by learning to sell, embracing technology, and spending money on efficient tools and systems.
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About Joseph Warren
Joseph Warren is a Christian Speaker, Podcast Host and Spiritual Coach. Joseph Warren offers Spiritual Coaching to Christian Business Owners who somehow find themselves in a spiritual rut. In just 90 days, he helps them avoid expensive divorces, break free from addiction, restore broken family relationships, and start living their Higher Purpose!