You’ve poured time, talent & energy into creating something - a work of art, an artisanal craft, a book, a song - and you’re ready to send it out in the world. You want to set it free and let it live out its days in a new home, with a new admirer to enjoy it and cherish it. One final act of love that you can offer that work & the person who’s exchanging cash for it, is the gift of a great buying experience.
It’s a lot to ask an artist to work on her money fears, cash worthiness, or personal value. It’s too much to ask some people to do in this lifetime. It is something that you can work on to emotionally heal yourself, so that the process of the sale feels less painful & more joyful. It could take years of therapy & it will probably involve unearthing and resolving completely unrelated emotional knots and tangles. If you’re called and compelled to do that, please do it. Do it for you, do it for the people who love you, do it for the people who love your work and want a great buying experience when they purchase your work.
Whether or not the therapy, resolution & forgiveness are hurdles too high to scale in the moment, start now buy giving your customers the gift of a great buying experience. How do you do this?
- Really take stock in what it’s like to purchase from you. Then take stock of what it’s like to purchase from places where you’re happy to spend. Next, consider what it’s like to purchase from places where you’re less than happy to spend. Try to recreate the happier experiences more often for your customers.
- Consider your customer. They found your work / your art / your product. This special thing that they were looking for that is so special & unique to find, and they found it! Yes! (You know that feeling that I’m talking about when you strike gold and find JUST THE THING you’re looking for - yes, that is how your customer feels when they have finally found your work.) The thrill of the find & the joy of the purchase. It’s why we shop. It’s why we go to the craft fair, it’s why we covet the art or the craft, or savor the experience. It’s been found & it validates me & I love it!
- Let your customer love the buying experience as much as they love your work that they have just found. Honor their thrill that the search is over. Honor their joy that they can bring this piece home to enjoy or give the gift that they have been eager to give. Respect that they have the cash to make the purchase and that they have chosen your work to purchase.
This means temporarily abandoning your own guilt, shame & judgement for charging someone for your work instead of just giving it away. It’s means stepping outside of yourself & your mixed up emotions in the moment to just make it about your customer & their pleasant buying experience.
Let the last part of your exchange with them be one where they don’t adopt your guilt, regret or shame. They likely want to to feel good for having bought your work that they love, let them. Let them feel that bliss. And rather than get in the way of that joy with your own twisted heart, adopt their joy & reflect it back to them.
That is what makes customers excited to sign up for your email list. That is what makes them excited to open your emails, send in a request for a commission or find you at the next show to buy one of your latest pieces - joy. The joy of your craft, your work & the pleasure of the sale.