With a second year of blogging now underway, I decided to start a weekly post about business. Specifically, running a small business as a self-employed artist. Perhaps I’ll share some information that is new to you, perhaps I’ll put a different spin on information that may be familiar to you. Either way, I hope you’ll enjoy reading about the business aspect of a self-employed artist.
If you’re thinking of pursuing your art as a business, I hope what I share won’t keep you from pursuing that dream. I remember a friend once telling me not to let my hobby become a business. Why? Because then you take all the fun out of it. I don’t agree with that statement in its entirety. Yes, turning your art into a business can be a challenge but if you love what you do then you can still have fun while doing it.
These next few posts will be a series on writing a business plan. Or, as I’m starting to call it, the putting your DREAM INTO ACTION (DIA) plan. That doesn’t sound quite as intimidating as BUSINESS PLAN.
So why write a business plan? Well, I’ve asked myself that question for several years. I’ve run my business for almost five years without one. And I’ve found that this is fairly common for most artists. We want to create our art and not deal with the marketing, the planning, the goal setting. Because once you start doing that…well then it becomes a business.
Well, if you’re selling your art, you’re running a business on some level.
I admit that business plans can be intimidating buggers; especially when you see one in its finished form with its executive summary, market analysis, mission statement, strategies, financial plan, and benchmarks. But presentation is all about semantics.
Think about your business plan or your DIA plan as a series of goals, both long term and short term. Think about it in terms of your market; where do you want to sell your art and who are you selling to? Think of it in terms of your competition; who is your competition and how do you compare to them? Think of it in terms of finances; how much money do you want to make over a set period of time and how are you going to do it?
These are the topics or sections that I’ll share with you over the next few weeks. As I work on my DIA plan, I’ll share it with you.
Here are some resources that are helping me get started:
A sample business plan for a decorative pottery business