5 Essentials of Storytelling as an Arts Entrepreneur
A well-written mission statement, a strong bio, testimonials, crisp photos -- these are all, in some combination, important to the successes of arts entrepreneurs & business ventures as a whole. Communication of value is especially important in the arts as audience understanding hinges upon clearly conveyed authenticity. Whether you as an artist (broadly) are building or re-designing your website, updating your social media profiles, creating business cards, or assembling flyers for an upcoming exhibit, or anything else, the information below will help you strengthen your rapport with audiences while refining the stories you present to the world.
Table of Contents
1. Value, Vision, & Mission Statements
3. Nice Photos
5. In General
1. Value, Vision, and Mission Statements
- A Value Statement tells your audience very clearly who you are and what value you present to your markets. A value statement also provides a chance to share what your brand's values are that serve as motivation and priority in everything you do.
- A Vision Statement outlines the aspirations and goals of your company/brand/organization/etc. (A mission statement explains how you will achieve this vision.) A vision statement tells where you would like to be in the future and/or what your bright vision of the future is.
- For example, at Beaumonde we envision a world where immersive content deepens humanity's connection with art and culture in new ways.
- A Mission Statement conveys the purpose and objectives of your company/brand/organization/etc. It tells what you do and what makes you unique. Often, simple and direct sentences are clearest. Beaumonde's mission is two-fold, and one of those folds is "To redefine the way that art & experiences are marketed." Every website we build, 360 video we curate, snapchat campaign we launch, etc., comes back to this statement. It is what we do.
- A mission statement can look something like this: "We strive to ________ and to _______ by doing _________."
It is not imperative that your website has all three of the Statements listed above. However, some combination of the three, or some blend of words conveying what your purposes, goals, and values are, hold the keys to your success.
For a comprehensive guide to an these statements and writing an "About Us" page visit: https://moz.com/blog/9-simple-tips-for-making-an-about-us-page-that-works-for-your-brand.
A few tips:
- Remember your audience & purpose.
- Raunchy humor or tight professionalism each have their place.
- Tailor your bio to match its destination.
- Write in the 3rd person.
- Have a short and a long bio.
- Short: cover the relevant essentials in 100 words or less.
- Long: can add on more personal embellishments & expand on experiences. Around one page.
- Balance work experience with inspirations & interests.
- It helps, if possible, to include any awards won or justifying credentials (like reviews) or accreditations in relation to your brand/product/service/etc.
- Don't Forget Contact Info!
3. Nice photos
- If you're selling products, get high quality photos of your products made.
- If you're selling art, same thing goes.
- If you are selling services, find photos that represent the value and vibe of your services.
A few things to keep in mind when taking pictures for your website:
- Utilize clean backdrops that will enhance your product.
- Good lighting is key!
- Consider placement of the subject in the frame & balance of colors.
- High image quality helps a lot (most smart phones work great!).
- Consider target markets & demographics: who are you appealing to? How does the setting, the lighting, the colors & textures, and the feel of the composition of your photography all relate to audience interests & perceptions of your brand?
For a more in-depth look at product photography: https://www.shopify.com/blog/12206313-the-ultimate-diy-guide-to-beautiful-product-photography.
Testimonials are important because they help your website visitors form opinions about your brand based off real, solidified interactions others have had with your product/service/etc. Testimonials help convert potential clients into members of your circle: you go from being hypothetical to real & verified.
Some things to include when writing a testimonial:
- Client's name and relevant details about who they are & what they do. This establishes credibility.
- Photos either of those who wrote the testimonial or of your product/service as delivered to them (primarily for custom services, like website building or photography).
5. In General...
Keep it simple! Less is more: too much text overwhelms viewers causing them to leave in impatience. Make your point, and then add embellishments of style with creative language.
Pretty website design builds trust and first impressions are the key difference between someone staying to further explore your work or closing the window. The cleaner & more organized your website is the easier it is for visitors to get the information they need and to authentically connect with you as a person or brand.
- “Users prefer websites with low visual complexity.” (Source: Google)
- "A website’s design often provides the first impression customers have of a company. If the design is outdated, disorganized, cluttered, or uses unappealing colors, it creates a poor first impression." (Source: CrazyEgg.com)