Each month in The Textile Design Lab we welcome an industry expert who offers training in their area of expertise. This month our guest expert has been Andi Butler, a professional illustrator and surface designer since 1992. You can read more about Andi in our interview here.
Today we are so pleased to share an excerpt from Andi’s in-depth training PDF with you, which contains a wealth of information on self-promotion for designers, from social media to mailings, tradeshows, agents and more.
WHAT IS PROMOTION?
Anyone who is, or is planning to be, an independent designer, has done some type of self-promotion. Promotion is actively providing and encouraging awareness of a specific cause, organization, brand, venture or product. From something as simple as creating a blog or showing a friend of a friend your work all the way to a “spare-no-expense” planned out, branded, printed-up, one-year campaign. What promotion does is get your name out there, along with your work. It can actually prevent copyright problems by consistently creating connections between you and your work that is quickly recognized, and really boost your career. Using social media is an excellent tool millions of people use for various types of self-promotion. But there are some things of which to be mindful, so it doesn’t appear as though you’re always “pitching” your work. There’s ineffective promotion, effective promotion, and completely amazing promotion and fine lines between them. Designers who promote the most don’t necessarily promote the most effectively and it can even border on annoying to potential client.
If you’re wondering if you even really need to bother with self- promotion as a surface designer, that’s a personal decision that only you can make. But in order for companies to know what you do and what you can do for them, you have to get in front of them. Promotion is a way of showing art buyers and hiring managers your skills when you’re not there to do it in person. The goal of this tutorial is to help you get comfortable with your skills as a creative in order to use them to advertise and market yourself and your work. Download a free excerpt of the training here.