Today’s article is going to be one of those that might get me in trouble. I have been a balloon artist for over six years now and in the balloon community for about five years. I love the community. Some of my best friends are in this community, but we have one major problem in the industry: our egos!
This is not unusual for a performance based community. When I was in theatre the egos barely fit through the door. Some people’s heads were so big they would fill up the entire stage. So I understand this is natural in our industry. The challenge comes when we let our egos overlap into our business mindset.
There has been a great back and forth recently on some balloon forums about artistry versus craftsman. I’ve enjoyed the conversation quite a bit. I’ve never really considered myself a balloon artist. I use the term because it is an industry term and public term that has come to mean anyone working with balloons, but I create very few of my own designs. I’m a performing artist. My art is in my shows and stories.
The problem is considering yourself an artist means you automatically think of yourself in a different way than your customers do. They view you as a commodity and service and not an artist. Now your options are to either get mad and blame them for their “ignorance” or educate the client.
Most people I know aren’t willing to educate their clients. They just pout and rant and throw a temper tantrum like a three year old. But if you do want to change perception then you need to develop new skill sets. You need to learn to educate, to persuade, to sell yourself to your clients.
Interesting isn’t it? In order to truly be known as an artist you must first become better at business.
Make sure you read my other articles to learn more about selling.