Successful Art Careers | Using the Rule of Three | Part Six

In Art Making & Art Marketing, Use the Rule of Threes

winnersWhen you start looking at things in a certain way, you will find the number three comes into play over and over, and over again.

For a topical example, how about Gold, Silver and Bronze? Or, perhaps you have heard of the Rule of Thirds, the Rule of Three, or the Goldilocks Theory.

The Rule of Thirds Makes Compelling Compositions

As an artist, to apply the Rule of Thirds, you divide your image into nine equal parts using two equally spaced horizontal lines and two equally spaced vertical lines. Then you use the intersecting points to focus your most important visual elements to them. The result is your composition displays with greater tension, energy, and interest.

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Price Your Art Using the Goldilocks Theory

Scientists use what they call The Goldilocks Theory to explain how life is possible on earth. Our planet is a perfect 93 million miles from our sun. It is neither too far away, nor too close to the sun’s warming, powerful energy. Instead, it is in a “just right” middle spot that maintains the right conditions for survival.

Headline auction prices aside, the art most likely to sell is the in the “just right” range.” In real estate, you do not want the highest priced house on the street, or the lowest either. The same is true with art prices. Pricing your art in the sweet spot makes it the most attractive.

Communicate in Threes

Thomas Jefferson and Steve Jobs both understood the power of three when it came to communication. How easy it is to remember “Life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness”? Jobs thought in threes and believed the triad of Mac, iPod and iPhone were crucial the success of Apple. Its stock evaluation today testifies to his theory.

In 2010, Jobs introduced the first iPad tablet as a “third device” bridging smartphones and laptops. The iPad came in “three models”: 16, 32, and 64 GB of flash storage. When the iPad 2 hit the marketi in 2011, it was billed as “thinner, lighter, and faster” than its predecessor. How many ways can you incorporate the power of three in your marketing?

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Use the Rule of Three in Your Art Marketing

  1. Follow up on all prospective contacts at least three times.
  2. Use three or more contact methods, such as email, postcard, and phone call.
  3. Focus your marketing on three main events a year. Doing more is not feasible for most artists or small businesses.

Designers often use groupings of three in placing objects or art in settings. Think about creative ways to offer suites of art in groupings of three. In the print market, it’s widely understood that most hotel rooms design jobs are specified to have one large piece of art and two smaller complementary pieces.

The Rule of Three Applies Universally

You can find numerous examples of the power of three in business, economics, science and the arts.

A three-act play is not by chance. In an article by Amy Guth in the Chicago Tribune, she says the best way to use the Rule of Three in social media is:

  • One third of the time, post about you and/or your brand.
  • One third of the time post about your areas of interest and expertise while using material from an outside source.
  • One third of the time be yourself.

Small Businesses Uses the Rule of Thirds.

Bestselling author and authority blogger, Chris Brogan, suggests using the Rule of Thirds this way:

“Spend 1/3 of your time prospecting for new business. Spend 1/3 of your time working on your existing deliverables and execution. Spend 1/3 of your time supporting your customer base and doing administrative work. What I see most times are people working on the 2nd and 3rd parts of this equation and forgetting the first, because they feel so overwhelmed with what they have… But it is the first third that matters.”

Make Art People Are Passionate About

The Rule of Three applies to creating art that arouses passion. Artists whose art is strong enough that one-third will love, one-third will hate, and one-third will not know about it, use the rule to drive their business. They know there will be more than enough ardent fans who will acquire all the work they create.

Perhaps this plan will not work for  you. You will know if it does. You will not have to think hard about artists whose work fits the description. You will not find abstract art, graffiti art, steam punk art or most other genres have a universal appeal. However, for those who do love the work, they usually cannot get enough.

The Making Successful Art Careers Happen Series Goes On

  1. Making Successful Art Careers Happen | Part One
  2. Successful Art Careers | How to Make Yours Happen | Part Two
  3. Successful Art Careers | Marketing Art Effectively | Part Three
  4. Successful Art Careers Happen | Grow Where You Are Planted | Part Four
  5. Successful Art Careers | The Curse of Thinking Small | Part Five

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Barney Davey

I help artists and photographers find buyers, sell more art and operate profitably.

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