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In Episode 65... "How can I use Instagram and Pinterest to promote my art business?" - Olivia Franklin

Olivia Franklin is an oil painter from Marietta, Georgia. She paints anatomical self-portraits with anatomy as symbolism to evoke raw emotions.  Some of her subjects are motherhood, mental health, and postpartum anxiety. She's at a growing point in her business where she's getting into markets, her online views are going up, and she paints every day. Her business is on the way to where she wants it to be.

Olivia is very active on Instagram, but she’s wondering if she needs to change the way she’s using it. She’s been posting a couple of times a day, every day, but not getting any engagement or making the connections she’s looking for. Instagram has made it possible for Olivia to connect with other artists, small businesses and even people in her local area, so she knows it has value to her business. She doesn’t want to leave the platform altogether, but she is struggling to decide what to do... should she stop devoting so much time to it and focus more of her attention on something like Pinterest where she is seeing a lot of growth?

Listen in as I walk Olivia through making a mindset shift about marketing platforms and how to use them to complement her art business.

Key takeaways:  

  • Focus on nurturing your existing followers on Instagram. (00:06:02)

  • Use different platforms to focus on the three parts of marketing. (00:12:31)

  • Drive your Pinterest audience to your Instagram and newsletter. (00:14:48)

  • Create opt-ins on your website for people to sign up for your newsletter. (00:17:41)

  • Make it easy for people to sign up for your newsletter. (00:24:40)

  • Create a visual reminder of your workflow to help get the work done. (00:26:24)

Resources and links mentioned:

Learn more about selling your art:

  • For more practical and energetic strategies to create consistent income and life balance, follow Jessica on Instagram @artistmarketco
  • For more guidance on creating authentic, engaging content that resonates with your followers, get my Find Your Voice on IG course here.
  • Would you like to know where to spend your time in order to create consistent sales, without letting it take over your life? Awesome! Grab your free training, "The Artist's Day" here: https://theartistmarket.co/
  • For information on working with Jessica, send your questions/thoughts to jessica@theartistmarket.co

Read the Transcript for this episode

Jessica Craddock: Welcome back to Intuitive Art Sales. I am here with Olivia Franklin, who is an artist who paints anatomical self portraits with anatomy as symbolism to evoke raw emotions. Some of her subjects are motherhood, mental health, and postpartum anxiety. And she's at a growing point in her business where she's getting into markets. Her online views are going up. She's painting every day. She's getting into a pretty good. place. Welcome, Olivia. How are you doing?

Olivia Franklin: Good. How are you?

Jessica Craddock: Good. It's so good to see you. I haven't gotten to chat with you in a while, so I'm excited to do this today.

Olivia Franklin: Yeah, me too.

Jessica Craddock: I actually invited you to be a guest on my podcast because I had seen something on threads where you were talking about being frustrated with Instagram. And I was like, oooo, that would be a good topic.

Olivia Franklin: Yes.

Jessica Craddock: Can tell me a little bit more about that. I don't know if this is going to lead to like a mental switch or a strategy switch, or maybe you should just be off Instagram and do something else. I'm just curious where this is going to go. So fill me in.

Olivia Franklin: That is actually something that I've been considering is just completely getting off Instagram, or maybe just using it as, you know, more of a diary and then for me, and not necessarily an audience. And then moving on to, like, different platforms like Pinterest, or I'm focusing more on that, because that seems to be where I'm growing really well.

Jessica Craddock: Interesting.

Olivia Franklin: Yeah, Instagram. I have a lot of negative feelings towards Instagram and I don't wanna be negative

Jessica Craddock: Hey, can I just say having negative feelings doesn't mean you are negative. It just means that there's something that needs shifting, and sometimes if you don't explore what's happening there, you can't quite figure out where the shift needs to happen. So, I'm going to give you permission to express any negative feelings that you have and ask anyone who's listening to not then make that mean about Olivia, she's a negative person. Is that okay?

Olivia Franklin: Yes. Thank you.

Jessica Craddock: Yes, go ahead.

Olivia Franklin: That would be great. So Instagram is a really hard place right now because I feel like nobody is seeing anything. I'm even having trouble, you know, seeing things that of people that I'm following which is really hard. Because I want to see everything, and I want to engage with everything.

 yeah, the views are just going nowhere, and even when you post something, I feel like I'll post 4 times in a day, and it's just crickets. I try to consistently post at least once or twice.

Jessica Craddock: Every day? That's a lot!

Olivia Franklin: Every day.

Jessica Craddock: Have you experimented with posting less?

Olivia Franklin: No, I have not. I feel like in the past I posted less. I don't know. Maybe that's my issue.

Jessica Craddock: Well, there's so many factors, right?

Olivia Franklin: Yeah.

Jessica Craddock: Personally, and this is not going to be right for everybody. You have to experiment and find out what happens when you do the thing. But if I post more than once a day, I feel like the views get almost cut in half for those posts because I think what's happening is they're getting split.

Like, you either see 1 or you see the other. I don't know that that's true, but that is what has happened for me. And so I'm curious. If you are really going all in and trying to post twice a day, maybe if you gave a little bit of breathing room between, maybe that would make you way happier. I don't know.

Olivia Franklin: Probably. It has been affecting my mental health.

Jessica Craddock: Yeah, that's and I know you've got a baby, maybe not a baby anymore, but baby.

Olivia Franklin: Two toddlers. I guess it's just finding a balance of posting too much and not posting.

Jessica Craddock: Can I actually ask you a question?

Olivia Franklin: Yeah.

Jessica Craddock: What is your goal with Instagram? Like, overarching, what are you looking for?

Olivia Franklin: I'm looking to connect with others, but I'm also looking to send people to my website to make sales.

Jessica Craddock: Okay.

Olivia Franklin: Making an income is very important to me, especially right now. My family is about to move out of the house that we're currently living in and find a new one. I'm exploring all kinds of options with that. And we don't really know where we're going to go because money is so tight. My main thing is just not giving up on my business. Even though money is not really coming in very much. I'm still going to paint.

Jessica Craddock: Okay. So let me just talk through some things with you and we’ll see where we go.

Olivia Franklin: Okay.

Jessica Craddock: I love Pinterest. Pinterest is great for views.

Olivia Franklin: Yeah.

[00:06:02] Focus on nurturing your existing followers on Instagram.

Jessica Craddock: Again, there are no hard and fast rules. This is for my business specifically. But when people find me on Pinterest, there is a longer period before they become a client than with say Instagram, where I'm able to connect with them person to person. I actually, one thing that has kind of flipped my view on Instagram is not trying to grow it. And actually the less I try to grow it, the better it grows. The more, instead of trying to find more people or help more people find me on Instagram, I'm really focusing on interacting with the people that are already there that I see that I love.

Do I do that 24 hours a day? No, I don't. But when I have the time, I really focus on using it with DMs is one of my biggest reasons to log on to the app. Sometimes I'll scroll just to scroll, but like you, even then, a lot of times I don't see the people that I'm wanting to see. I get into the, ooh, that's an interesting quote, or that's a cool project I could try, and I watch those videos.

The algorithm is very smart. It knows what you're paying attention to, and if you start doom scrolling while you're in bed and just trying to check out, it registers that that's the content you're taking in, and that's what it shows you. So part of it is being really purposeful about am I on Instagram just to check out, or am I on Instagram to see certain people. And letting the other stuff kind of float by. Another thing that I've done is I've started adding people to close friends. Have you tried that feature? That works pretty well. And then creating content with those people in mind, usually one specific person. So, if I'm having a conversation with this person, they say something that triggers something, I go create a piece of content for that person. It goes out to everybody, but a lot of times people will go, Oh, it's like you read my mind. I'm like, well, I didn't. I listened to that person, and you just happen to resonate with that person.

Olivia Franklin: Yeah, that actually seems so logical and practical to just focus on the people that are following you. I just struggle with so many spam accounts, following, or just not knowing who is a real person. I can typically tell, but sometimes it feels like I get a ton of follows, and it's really just like a fake account.

Jessica Craddock: Don't even look at, well, I take that back, do look at them, because I do like to look at the people who start following me. Because I want to see who that is. Right? And if it feels like a good thing to do in the moment, I might message them. If it's a spam account, I pretty much just block them immediately. I feel like the more you just take swift action and put them out of your mind,

Olivia Franklin: the better.

Jessica Craddock: the less it affects you.

Olivia Franklin: Yeah,

Jessica Craddock: Block, block, block,

Olivia Franklin: it's very true. It's okay to block and that doesn't affect you. Right?

Jessica Craddock: No. I actually don't get that many spam accounts. I do get them following me, but I don't get that many messages or comments. And I think, possibly, that's a result of just blocking people.

Olivia Franklin: I try to block. I get a lot of messages. I have tried to go into the system, you know, or the settings and put in words like, oh, block these kind of messages or sayings or whatever. it does help a little, and so, yeah, that has been an improvement. Yeah, I really just need to focus on the people that are on my account that are following me because there are quite a few people that I feel like I've really been able to connect with. can't completely write instagram off i've been able to connect with other small businesses, lots of artists, even local people near me which has been really great.

Jessica Craddock: Yes. Can I say yes again? Yes, that, that is the mindset switch. It's not, how do more people find me, or how do I get 800 views on this? Or how do I, whatever. It's those people. How do I spend more time with those people And you kind of do have to train yourself and the algorithm to make that happen.

[00:11:06] Use different platforms to focus on the three parts of marketing.

Jessica Craddock: So I don't think I finished my thought from earlier, but there are three parts to marketing. I think I say this on every single episode. There's visibility, there's nurture, there's sales. Pinterest, in my mind, is a great platform for visibility.

Olivia Franklin: Yeah

Jessica Craddock: Instagram, the way that I like to use it, is a great platform for nurturing. So When you can kind of separate it that way and start to see them as separate pieces, it makes it a lot less taxing of, I have to be all the things and succeed all the ways on all the places.

Olivia Franklin: When you get a new follower, do you typically do like a private message and you like introduce yourself or like say hi and tell them thanks for following.

Jessica Craddock: I don't always have time to go through all of them, I try to make it a practice to when I see a new follower, go check them out. If they seem like someone who is a good fit for me, for my personality, for my business, someone I'm interested in, I do try to message them.

Olivia Franklin: Okay.

Jessica Craddock: and it doesn't have to be anything groundbreaking. Like, hey, I noticed when you started following me, and I really love your X, Y, Z. Nice to meet you. Just as simple as that. Like, pretend they're a person, because they are. And what would you say to that person if you

Olivia Franklin: We're face to face.

Jessica Craddock: were face. to face? Exactly. And you

Olivia Franklin: Yeah.

Jessica Craddock: And you happen to have all this information at your fingertips about them, which is also really cool.

Olivia Franklin: yes, I've been working on that is trying to connect with more of the people that follow me that way through messaging.

Jessica Craddock: Another way that you can start to kind of integrate the two as a strategy is reposting either reels or posts onto Pinterest and making the link to follow you on Instagram. I wouldn't make that like your main thing if, you know, you have Let's say 10 to 25 percent of your posting on Pinterest going back to your Instagram account, they can find you on both platforms. And then you can they can not only know you exist, but you can nurture them as well. The only other way to really grab people from Pinterest is newsletter, enticing them to sign up for that. Are you doing that?

Olivia Franklin: No.

Jessica Craddock: like, they just see and then they're gone.

Olivia Franklin: Yeah, I've been getting a lot of traffic to my website on specific pieces that are popular on Pinterest. But then it's just like crickets. So, I'm getting a lot of traffic, but it's not converting. So, I've been trying to figure out, you know, what is it that I need to do, whether I need to update my website, or I need to do a different strategy on posting.

[00:15:48] Drive your Pinterest audience to your Instagram and newsletter.

Jessica Craddock: Are they going to a high-priced item or a low priced item?

Olivia Franklin: I'd say it's a low-priced item.

Jessica Craddock: Can you give me a number

Olivia Franklin: 150.

Jessica Craddock: For Pinterest, that's probably a middle-priced item.

Olivia Franklin: Okay.

Jessica Craddock: There isn’t anything in between. It's just, Hey, look at this thing. You want to buy it? Yes, no. And most of the time that's going to be a no, just because that's how conversion rates work. Especially with Pinterest, it takes a lot more traffic to turn into a purchase click. So, if there were a middle step in there where you could somehow grab them, so there was not just a look. Goodbye. You'd have a much higher chance of some of those people that are viewing turning into, oh, I wanna know more about that person. Oh, I really connect with her work. Oh, 150. You see kind of the difference there.

Olivia Franklin: Yeah.

Jessica Craddock: I’m going to be honest and say, creating a signup form for a newsletter from Pinterest is going to take a little bit of trial and error to find one that works well for you.

Olivia Franklin: Okay.

Jessica Craddock: You have a newsletter, don't you?

Olivia Franklin: Like email subscribers and everything. Yeah. I send out a monthly newsletter. I send a couple of emails if there's a new painting, or like recently, I sent out an email about a bunch of new prints that I added to my store and stuff like that.

Jessica Craddock: How do you get people on that newsletter list?

Olivia Franklin: I typically will make a post on Instagram, whether it's in my stories or a regular post, and I also do markets and get people to sign up.

[00:17:41] Create opt-ins on your website for people to sign up for your newsletter.

Jessica Craddock: If I were to give you an assignment, I would like you to try adding some opt in forms around your website and paying attention to the numbers. Meaning, okay, the pop up and how many people signed up for the pop up? A typical conversion rate, this is going to sound terrible, but it is what it is. A typical conversion rate for a pop up, or not necessarily a pop up, but an sign up form is about 1 3%. So, if you get 100 people viewing it, one person signs up,

Olivia Franklin: Okay, I don’t have a pop up on my website.

Jessica Craddock: I used to be anti-pop up, but I do a ton of testing. For example, I have a blog post. I'll have a sign-up form in the middle. I'll have one at the end. I have a pop up that I think comes up on exit intent, meaning when they're about to leave and I test those things to see who signs up for this one, who signs up for this one. Which one's the highest.

The pop up is always the highest.

Olivia Franklin: That's interesting.

Jessica Craddock: I know, and I hate pop ups.

Olivia Franklin: I need to put my pop up back up. I was recently, It was suggested that I take the pop up down because it was on my website specifically specifically. You get on and it instantly pops up and it was just like in your face. That was too much. So, I need to figure out if I can, like, time it to where people aren't just bombarded by the pop up instantly, and they can take some time to breathe and look around and then, oh, pop up.

Jessica Craddock: So, I'm going to keep saying this because it's going to be different for everybody. In my testing, the exit intent pop up worked the best because it was, oh, you're about to leave. Wait, do you want this? What website builder are you using?

Olivia Franklin: Shopify. Okay. Right.

Jessica Craddock: I haven’t dug around in Shopify as much as I should. It is one of the platforms that definitely are my higher recommendations, maybe my highest recommendation. But I am not familiar with, what types of forms they have, and can they give you the data on all the numbers of which ones are working and how many options do they have and all of that.

But if I were you, I would Google Shopify opt in types. And start with that. See what's available. And then create a couple different ones. And then, again, I love Google. Google something like, how can I see, or can I see the conversion rate for my opt in on Shopify? Or for my pop up, or for my footer, or whatever that is. And it should be able to give you pretty good results. Quickly, here's how you do that because if you don't pay attention to the numbers, you're just guessing. Okay.

So once you've figured that out, you know how to put them on, you've put them on, you know, how to look at the numbers. Just leave them there for a month. At the end of the month, go back and see which one did the best. And I'm not necessarily saying take the others off, but we're going to focus on the one that did the best and we're going to make a change to it. Maybe it's, I'm going to add a picture of me, or I'm going to change the incentive. Or I'm going to change the headline, or something along those lines. I'm going to change the text on the button, like one, one big change. And then give it another month, see if that number goes up or down. And I don't mean number of views, I mean conversion rate, which is the number of people who sign up divided by the number of views. So if you see that two people signed up on that form, 100 people saw it, you've got a 2 percent conversion rate. And then we make one change, and then we go back and look again. Did that 2 percent go up or down? Going down, change the thing that you changed back, and change something else.

Olivia Franklin: Okay.

Jessica Craddock: And it's just like every month. You go in and you change one thing. Can I get that number up? Can I get that number up? And then maybe one of them is working a lot better than the others, and so you're not sure if it's because it's a pop up or if it's because you put your picture on it, but that one's working well.

So what can we take from that one to add to the other one? Well, I think it was the picture. So I'm going to take the picture and I'm going to add it into this other form. Can I get that number up?

Olivia Franklin: Okay,

Jessica Craddock: Does that make sense?

Olivia Franklin: Yeah, that makes a lot of sense. And I think it's all very valuable.

Jessica Craddock: Which it sounds like a lot of work, but it's really not. I mean, the initial setup is, but making one change and looking at your numbers every month is a pretty simple thing to do. You could do it in an hour and the higher you get that rate, even if you're not growing your views, you'll still be growing your amount of people joining.

Olivia Franklin: Right? Yeah.

Jessica Craddock: And since you're doing well on Pinterest, I want to find a couple of ways to capture those people. So one of those being, we're going to start testing opt ins on our website. And the other one being, we're going to add in some of our Instagram posts that link back to our Instagram account.

And then on Instagram, we're using that as a nurturing place. And the less you care about how many new people it's finding, I predict, the better it will do and the happier you will be overall.

What do you think? Questions?

Olivia Franklin: I love that idea. Should I have, like, 1 page being a landing page? Then you have 1 at the footer and then you have a pop up. So, and those are the 3 that I would be basically comparing every month.

Jessica Craddock: Put in as many as you want, the more the better.

Olivia Franklin: Okay,

Jessica Craddock: Let's say you have Hello bar that is essentially, when they come in, instead of that big pop up in front of them, it's a little bar at the top that says, would you like to join my newsletter? And it doesn't cover anything up. You can have that and then you can have a exiting pop up. And then you can have it in the footer of your website. And then you can have a in your contact page and, like, just. Use them the more you have, the better.

[00:24:40] Make it easy for people to sign up for your newsletter.

Jessica Craddock: I have a really hard time finding email opt-ins on many artists websites. Like, I want to sign up for their newsletter. And if I've clicked out of the initial pop up, which I do, because I want to see what's on the page, then I can't find one. And I can't sign up. Like, make it easy.

Olivia Franklin: Sometimes I have trouble finding even art that they're selling. Yeah.

Jessica Craddock: Crazy. I'm not one for like, spend all this time on your website and make it perfect, but when it fits into the strategy, like we're talking about right now, then it's worth the time. We're not just doing it to do it because someone told us to do it. But also, if you're telling people to go look at your website to buy art, have art for them to find.

Olivia Franklin: So, yeah, you should probably have art on there. Have all the options.

Jessica Craddock: Tell them how to buy it. Don't just show a picture of it, please.

Olivia Franklin: I have noticed that about myself. Like even in the past, like I'll look back at my Instagram, and I'm like, oh, I said I was gonna do this, and I said I was gonna do that. So, reminding myself to view my past posts or whatever is something that I'm trying to do more often because I don't wanna forget to do something that I said I was going to do. It's kind of a good accountability, in a way, but it also keeps my plans on track because I get sidetracked.

And I'm now on medication and that has helped tremendously. And so, I think now that I can actually think a lot of ways, I'm able to look at the things that I've missed.

[00:26:24] Create a visual reminder of your workflow to help get the work done.

Jessica Craddock: Do you have something in front of you, that's like a, not a everyday step by step plan, but like overarching, here's my project that I'm working on. Here's the 4 things I want to do every week type of moment.

Olivia Franklin: I just, whatever feels right. I just go with the flow basically. I don't, I haven't done that.

Jessica Craddock: Okay.

So, I'm going to say, let's go create that. Get out a piece of paper. Say every month, I'm going to check my opt ins, and I'm going to change one thing.

Olivia Franklin: Okay.

Jessica Craddock: My project right now is…

Olivia Franklin: I'm trying to create more work for the upcoming markets in the spring. That's basically my project.

Jessica Craddock: Let me rephrase that. So, I like to have kind of a couple of things on my list. One is, what is the art that I'm making? If I have a project, when I say project, what I mean is like, it sounds like you recently opened a Pinterest account and started building the boards. And like, that was a project, right? That was something that you were starting and needed more attention that became a project.

And then I like to, like, you know, kind of have a focus of the month. Am I focusing on getting seen by more people? Am I focusing on nurturing? Am I focusing on selling? And just even if you just had those 3 things written down in front of you, and then every week say, what are my top 3 goals? But you have a kind of overarching, these are the big picture things I want to do. This week, what are my main focuses? I think that would help.

Olivia Franklin: Okay.

Jessica Craddock: So, to summarize, what are your takeaways?

Olivia Franklin: I'm going to focus more on my goals every month. I'm going to use Instagram as a nurturing place and Pinterest as a,

Jessica Craddock: Visibility.

Olivia Franklin: Visibility. Yes, and working on my pop ups on my website, my opt ins.

Jessica Craddock: I'm going to rephrase that one just to kind of summarize this strategy. But we're going to work on finding ways to grab people from Pinterest since that's where they're finding you. And give them more of an experience with you, whether it's through Instagram or your newsletter.

Olivia Franklin: yes.

Jessica Craddock: Yes. Okay, great. So, Olivia, thank you.

This was fun. We didn't really even talk about Instagram troubles that much, but do you feel like, do you feel better?

Olivia Franklin: I do feel better. It's just talking it out and knowing what you're doing is the right thing or talking out your new strategy. That helps a lot.

Jessica Craddock: Great. Okay.

Where can people find your work about motherhood and mental health and postpartum anxiety if they're looking?

Olivia Franklin: My website is O Franklin Art.com, and I am on Instagram as O Franklin Art. Facebook and Pinterest, threads, all of it.

Jessica Craddock: What's your favorite place to connect? Let's ask that question.

Olivia Franklin: Instagram. Instagram is my favorite place to connect.

Jessica Craddock: Mmm, so I'm glad we didn't say throw it out!

Olivia Franklin: Yeah, I know, right?

Jessica Craddock: Okay. Can you spell it? It’s just O Franklin art.

Olivia Franklin: O F R A N K L I N A R T

Jessica Craddock: Perfect. Okay. Thank you so much Olivia. I will let you go to take care of your kiddos and we'll talk soon.

Olivia Franklin: Okay. Bye.

Jessica Craddock: Bye.


More about Intuitive Art Sales

This is the show where I, Jessica Craddock, am going to teach you how to source your art marketing from within. You're going to practice claiming that authentic art business that you want and leaning into the most natural way for you to get there. You're going to learn to get connected to your intuition, your confidence and your community, so that you can sell your art consistently while holding strong boundaries on your work life balance.

Most of my episodes are full of interviews with your peers. In these and all episodes moving forward, I explore what each artist wants and give them the next steps to get there. You can take their struggles and their challenges and learn how to navigate your own and create actionable steps towards creating more art sales, more consistently at higher prices than you've ever sold before.

Just a note to our long-time listeners: We're doing away with our "Seasons", but you can still find this designation abbreviated at the end of the show titles for Seasons 1 & 2. From now on episodes will be numbered chronologically at the end of the title as well as in the episode description.

You can find all the episodes here.

About the Author

Jessica Craddock

I mentor intuitive visual artists who are sick of one-size-fits all formulas sell more work, more consistently, at higher prices — with better work/life balance. My clients regularly make 3x more in art sales within a year.

Using my signature Consistent Income method, we’ll push you over the precipice of some really amazing growth so you can become the creator of your next chapter.

My secret sauce is that we focus on not just the "doing", but also the "being". Affirmations, trusting yourself, knowing when to go slow and when to go fast, practicing getting out of your comfort zone and making room for the feelings that go with that... all this is equally as important as the action steps.

For once, you'll be ahead of the game and understand what's right for you.

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