When you want to sell art online, you've got to be totally transparent with your customers. How do you do that?
When there's bad news, your job as a blogger and internet art business entrepreneur is to TELL the truth, NOT hide it.
Some years back, Joe Polish, who teaches my kind of marketing to folks in the carpet cleaning industry, went on ABC's 20/20 and exposed the scams in the carpet cleaning business - bait-and-switch tactics, tricks to hoodwink old ladies and bilk people out of their money.
Did it make his industry look bad?
Sure did. He got death threats on his answering machine, and worse.
But he and his intrepid followers took advantage of it. They posted 24-hour voicemail messages, explaining how some carpet cleaners scam you out of your money - but how they do the opposite. He sold against the bad guys, and won.
Joe beat the PR game by exposing scams, rather than hiding them.
Listen up: The number one force that you fight against in the marketplace today is not your competitors, the economy, Microsoft, or foreign imports.
Instead, your toughest battle is against skepticism and cynicism.
People won't believe what you say any more than the Chinese believe their communist state newspaper. To sell art online, you have to come through with the real picture of yourself.
Americans were mortified to discover that Richard Nixon had actually lied to them. But when Bill Clinton lied about Monica, nobody was surprised at all. And now Slick Willie is collecting six figure checks as a keynote speaker.
So who's going to believe you or me?
Nobody. Not the first time, anyway. Maybe not even the second or third time. Not without proof - and certainly not if you or I sound like a load of commie peptalk from the China People's Daily.
A company that does what Joe Polish did isn't "faking it." Customers can tell.