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Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Trudging Up the Steep Learning Curve of Self Representation Online


It’s been four months since I started promoting my poetry and artwork online. I’m still trudging my way up the steep learning curve of online self-representation. My Cafepress shop has paid for itself, in terms of covering the annual premium shop fees. From what I’ve read, it can take up to a full year for a shop to get going and be successful. So far, I’m off to a good start. I attribute it to the hours I’ve spent sizing images and writing product descriptions. The time spent up front pays off in the end. My shop is getting regular search engine traffic, and I’ve made good use of Froogle Beta thanks to a great online tool called café Toolbox.

Over the past few months, I’ve read as much as I could about SEO and learned how to tweak my keywords and maximize my Google AdWords ads. I’ve made good use of Squidoo and have a handful of lenses. They’re seeing regular traffic and are receiving good placement with Google. I’ve been networking with other self-representing women artists who sell their work online and have learned quite a bit from this creative group.

I continue to research and sign up for various free online artist gallery & print services like imagekind.com, printpop.com, artistrising.com, deviantArt.com, and artwanted.com. It’s this side of things I’m finding the most challenging to navigate. There are quite a few free gallery services and print services popping up on the Web these days. It’s tough to know which are trustworthy and will showcase my work most effectively.

I’ve set aside my domains, created a logo and continue to work on branding and visibility. When I started out, last fall, I didn’t realize how time-consuming setting things up would be. As a self-representing artist & poet, it’s not enough to just create and put my work out there. I’ve learned how important it is to research SEO, network with other self-representing artists & bloggers, and take what I’ve learned and put it into practice.

I look forward to seeing what the next few months bring, in terms of networking & business, now that things are slowly rolling forward.

P.S. My thanks to the person who purchased the Heartbeat & Moments Matter framed poem prints today. It’s also cool to think that somewhere out there one of my Moments Matter license plate frames is zooming about making my poetry mobile.

B.Y. Penman

Froogle Beta : http://www.google.com/base/help/sellongoogle.html

café Toolbox: http://cafetoolbox.com/

Cafepress: www.cafepress.com

Squidoo: www.squidoo.com

Worldwide Women Artists Online: http://www.worldwidewomenartists.com/

4 comments:

Travis said...

I couldn't find a link to your Imagekind gallery anywhere on this page - am I missing something? I would love to check it out.

Jackal said...

I wish you well. Exciting times ahead.

Savvyology said...

Here is the link to my imagekind gallery

http://savvyology.imagekind.com/fineart

Miriam said...

i think that what you are doing is beyond cool, and am amazed at your tenacity and willingness to learn in a process filled with unknowns and ever more to think about. it's inspiring.