What We Can Learn About Branding From Artists

-written by Hearth Member, Ryan Bonaparte

Artists rely on their brand to survive. If I told you a cellist was going to be playing at my house tomorrow, you might give me a strange look and wonder why I thought that was particularly interesting. However, if I told you it was Yo-Yo Ma, a world famous cellist with 18 Grammy Awards, you’d probably think otherwise. A brand is valuable.

It’s not just artists that rely on their brand, though they are generally some of the most successful at leveraging it. Whether you’re in business, medicine, engineering, or construction, your personal brand precedes much the same way it does for an artist.

But what does a brand mean for someone who doesn’t go out selling their work day in and day out? If you’re known as an expert in your field, opportunities will arise and your actions will be highly regarded.

In a way, a brand is a more in-depth version of your reputation. While a reputation generally reaches those you meet and connect with personally, a brand can travel the world and garner support from people you may never meet. Harnessing that brand can change your professional career in ways that you probably don’t even expect.

  • Never Miss An Opportunity To Share Your Work

Building a brand takes time and energy to overcome the noise of other people looking to do the same thing. Artists know this, and often find ways to showcase their work in even the smallest venues. This hustle is what is needed to break out and become the next big thing.

  • Keep Up With What’s New

Artists that stand still in time tend to get left behind. Keeping up with the times is not about following what’s trendy, but it’s about truly understanding significant shifts in society. An artist who doesn’t incorporate this year’s spring colors in their fashion line may still succeed; an artist who doesn’t recognize the power of the internet and social media in reaching an audience is deeply missing out.

  • Strive To Improve

No matter how good an artist is at their craft, they are always looking to improve. A photographer goes on shoots in more difficult locations, an architect takes on clients that have extremely challenging requirements, and a painter tries a new medium that’s maybe a little outside of their comfort zone. It’s this desire to become better that also helps to keep them relevant and remain experts in their field.

  • Work Multiple Angles

Sometimes focusing on one path towards building a brand won’t be enough. A writer may need to work in different outlets, or maybe even include speaking engagements to get their voice heard. This flexibility and drive to hustle can be what allows an artist to move from a local presence to a national one.

  • Recognize The Importance Of Maintaining A Brand

It’s one thing to build a brand, but an entirely different one to maintain it. Brands reflect a level of expertise and relevance that is only possible by performing. In order to keep the brand alive, artists continually work at ensuring that their work accurately represents the highest level of quality. In fact, they will often hold off on delivering something if it doesn’t represent their best.

Artists are the main ambassadors of their work, with only their ability to promote to sustain them. Any professional can follow the same process to not only showcase their talents, but also build a brand that will precede them wherever they go.

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