When I started as a professional magician in 2014, I put up my website and presented my offers.
I wanted to get as many gigs as possible and perform for high paying clients. I thought that if I had a great website, people would find me and book me. That was my idea of professional marketing for artists.
I quickly realized that few people are looking for a magician. Sad but true.
I had no money to spend on ads, so I had to learn a better strategy.
The big secret
I knew that if I got people into my world, they would often book me. The problem was to get them even to notice me. I had to do something to get them into my world.
Marketing for artists is about getting people into your world
I went back to the drawing board and thought about my perfect client.
What did they look for before they looked for me as an artist? It turned out they looked for many things, but the one thing that caught my attention was venues.
Every event needs a place to be, and if I could help people find a suitable venue, they would also notice me (and hopefully book me).
I created a simple guide to the top ten event venues in my town. I turned it into a PDF and gave it away for free in exchange for the peoples’ e-mail address.
Suddenly, people who never even thought about hiring a magician found me and booked me.
They weren’t looking for me, they were looking for a venue, but since I helped them upfront, many of them booked me.
My “problem” now was that I had too many requests. I had to say no to gigs.
At first, I was a little frustrated about this, but I quickly realized that I could now pick the clients I liked. It made my life both more comfortable and more fun.
This utilizes something called a “lead magnet”, and is an effective way of marketing for artists of any kind.
Instead of relying on people to search for your type of entertainment, you help them with the thing they need just before they hire an entertainer.
You help them with their problem, and in the process, they find you. If you’re good at what you do, chances are they will hire you.
I hope you see the bigger picture here. You’re not selling yourself to everyone. You’re helping people who are in your target audience with a problem they have. This approach is an excellent type of marketing for artists that feel uncomfortable selling.
But how do you present your service to someone who is looking for help with venues?
Marketing for artists with the IKEA-method
Have you ever been to IKEA? If you have, you might recognize this pattern.
You are looking for a new lamp, so you go to the lamp section of the store.
You find the lamp and head to the checkout. On your way to the checkout, you see lots of other things you need, and since it’s right there, it’s easy for you to add it to your basket.
When you finally reach the checkout, you have many items in your basket that you never thought of buying before you entered the warehouse.
It’s not bad stuff, or stuff you don’t need, so you don’t feel cheated.
Instead, you feel pretty satisfied since you didn’t have to look elsewhere for the things you now know you need.
Compare this with your “normal” store. With shelve after shelve, you only buy what you came for and then quickly leave. Sometimes, you don’t even find what you’re looking for and leave without buying anything.
Now take this concept and apply it to your online presence.
Your website is like the “normal” store, but instead of shelves, you have different pages, subpages, and options. It’s a confusing experience for any visitor, and many leave without hiring you.
If you could use the IKEA-method, you would take the visitor through your website and show her the things she needs.
The best part is this; you can (and it’s to marketing for artists like spinach is for Popeye).
There’s a thing called a funnel, and it’s the internet version of IKEA.
You give the visitor what she came for (your free lead magnet) and then show the visitor other things she might need.
Yes, you guessed it…like your entertainment service.
Marketing for artists without a website?
But wait, you might say…should I get rid of my website? No, but you should add a funnel as a compliment.
Your website is your branding, your home where people can read about you and, for all means, book you.
But your website is primarily for the ones who already know about you, and the cold hard truth is that not enough people know about you…yet.
The solution is to keep your beautiful website as a kind of online business card, but add a sales funnel as your “booking machine.”
A simple funnel for an artist could look like this.
- Page one – Free lead magnet that solves a real problem
- Page two – Thank you page with a short introduction.
- Page three – Contact form where the visitor can send an inquiry.
And that’s it.
Why can’t you add this to your website, you might wonder.
You can, but you run the risk of people leaving before they see your free lead magnet.
Visitors that land on your website will be overwhelmed with options. You most likely have 4-5 pages with information, photos, contact page, and so on.
For someone who arrives at your site without knowing what they want, that could be a very confusing experience.
It’s kind of like the store with too many shelves. People leave before they find what they need.
What about a pop-up?
A pop-up works best if you’re running a blog or another content based website (like this one). It’s not crucial for me that my visitors opt in to my e-mail list. I’m perfectly fine just to give great value to the reader.
For anyone running a business, getting leads is crucial!
The marketing for artists power-combo
It’s not one or the other. It’s a combination.
The best solution is to have your website as your business card but point every visitor to your sales funnel through your ads, profile links on social media, and so on..
Think of this from the perspective of your dream client.
Let’s say you’re a children’s magicians, and you want some bookings for the summer. You put out a free lead magnet in the form of a PDF with information on “5 fun games you can play at your child’s birthday party”.
Julie, who has two children and is planning a birthday party for the oldest one, see one of your comments on Facebook.
She looks at your profile page and sees a link to the free PDF. As this PDF will help her with a real problem, she enters her e-mail and ends up on the second page in your funnel.
She looks at your introduction video and gets intrigued about your service. She just needs to click on a button to get to your booking form. It’s right there.
Even if she only downloads your free PDF and leaves your funnel, you will have her e-mail address. That means you can follow up with her over time.
Compare this with a “normal” website. If Julie stumbles upon your website, she has too many options.
Instead of giving you her e-mail and showing her your introduction video, she will most likely leave without ever contacting you.
You can use the lead magnet strategy with your “normal” website. Just know that it’s not as efficient as with a proper sales funnel.
You don’t need to create the lead magnet
“Okay, I understand the concept. But I don’t have anything to offer, and I don’t have time to create something new.”
Don’t worry. I’ll show you a secret.
There’s something on the internet called PLR. PLR stands for Private Label Rights, and it’s incredible.
In short, PLR-products are products you can change, edit, and tweak to fit your business. There are many different types of PLR-products, but you should go with a simple PDF for this strategy.
The key is to find a product with “giveaway rights.”
If we continue on the children’s magician example above, a simple search on Google for birthday ebook “giveaway rights” shows many options.
For example, the book to the right called “The Party Planner” costs just $5.94 and have giveaway rights. You could use that as a lead magnet and help stressed parents plan their kids’ birthday parties.
Marketing for artists with no tech skills
But I’m not a tech-savvy person. I don’t know how to build a funnel.
When I started, building a funnel was hard. You would need to hire an expensive programmer and spend hundreds (if not thousands) of dollars before your funnel was ready.
Fortunately, that has changed in the last few years. Today, you could build your funnel yourself without anything else than elementary computer skills.
You see, there is this software called Clickfunnels, and it’s like funnel-building for dummies. With a simple drag-and-drop interface and pre-made templates, you could have your funnel up and running within an hour.
You can even get a free 14-day trial to test the software, no strings attached.
So, if you want to use the best marketing for artists, start your free 14-day trial today.