Genuine business growth comes from getting your brand in front of established audiences and showing off your best self. While social media feels like marketing, it’s often a hollow gesture that doesn’t push the needle in your business. Partnering with other brands and creators, however, has the power to get your art seen and your sales growing.
As an art based business there are three main areas that I pitch my brand. These are podcasts, articles/publications, and agencies or galleries (I personally, focus on agencies). The same thought process goes into a pitch for any one of these, so we’ll just focus on how to pitch to podcasts.
How To Pitch Your Art Based Business
All business comes down to one thing, what do you have to offer someone else that’s of value. This is your product that you’re offering your customers in exchange for money but when you think of another business it has to be something else. What value can you add for another business? That is the number one question you have to answer when thinking of pitching, because you are here to serve. If you want access to their audience, you have to earn it, and since you aren’t paying them for their audience you have to offer something up of equal value.
On top of this, you also have to think about what audiences you want to get in front of. If you’re an illustrator wanting to increase your licensing work then being on a podcast with an audience of stay-at-home moms isn’t going to take you far. However if your focus is selling prints or creating home decor for children’s rooms then that’s the prefect audience.
Know what you have to offer that’s valuable, go out of you way to give it, and make sure you’re aligning with the right audience. That’s where you start.
But how do you actually go about pitching? Let’s break it down.
Pitching To Podcasts
Podcasts come in a variety of topics and sizes. If you’ve never been on a podcast before then you’ll want to start by pitching to small podcasts. I found podcasts through Matchmaker.fm and podcastwise.com. Both are paid platforms with a free option that will allow you to reach out to a limited number of emails per month. Your goal is to hit that minimum every month. For every 10 emails you send to be on a podcast, you’ll get 1 maybe 2 responses. So mass emailing is your friends.
With that said, you still have to focus on giving value.
When choosing podcasts to reach out to, look at who they’ve had on their podcast in the past, check out their website and bio to see what they look and feel like. Decide if their audience is one that your ideal customer would be in (Don’t know what an ideal customer is? Learn about in my Skillshare course) Once you have podcasts that you think will match your audience it’s time to think about what you have to offer.
What Value Do You Bring?
My business is all about creating calm spaces. I’m more than just an artist, I want to help women heal from burn out. So the topics I like to talk about are all around slow living and healing from burnout. On the other hand, I have a background in business and marketing (hence why I’m a business coach for artists) so I also can talk about marketing for artists. But to put a new spin on it I talk A LOT about marketing without social media and how to take a more feminine approach to marketing.
I not only have clear topics I can pitch to podcasts so that the host will know what our episode will be about, I’ve also taken a new twist on common conversations or problems–1. women are tired, how they can heal from burn out. 2. business + marketing, doing it in a way the others aren’t talking about.
I’m doing all the work for the host by bringing a clear theme to the episode so that they don’t have. The more you can do the work for someone, the more likely you are to get in front of their audience.
Make Their Job Easy
Not only do I make their job easier by giving them the topic for the episode I try to be as easy to work with throughout the process. Getting in front of their audience is big for me and helps me a lot, so what can I do to repay them for this?
Share How You’ll Market It
In the initial pitch I try to keep it as short as possible. Say what I like about their podcast and what drew me in, who I am and what I do, and then what I have to offer for their podcast. Short and sweet to save them time during their busy days. After we book the interview or exchange a few emails, or even right after we’re done recording I make sure to name how I’ll market it. This includes:
- Re-sharing anything I’m tagged in on Social
- Creating my own blog post on my website that links to their episode and their website to help them build backlinks and better support their SEO
- Linking to it in my weekly newsletter
If there are more ways you can share this content, by all means include those in there. If you have large audiences then also feel free to include the size of your audience.
If and when you start pitching to large podcasts with huge followings, I would include these or a media kit with your message so that your audience sizes can be one more way that you add value. If your audience is small, you can just leave this out for now.
I have a podcast kit folder in my dropbox that I share right after doing an interview. It has a variety of headshots for them to choose from and a doc with my bio, links to my social accounts and website, and a list of freebies they can include in their shownotes. When I send a thank you email after the recording I include this as well as any other resources I talked about in the show with links already provided. This way they don’t have to waste time or energy asking me for anything. They should have it all as soon as we’re done recording.
Here is an email example of how I pitched to the podcasts The 8 Hour Grind (You can listen to our episode here). His audience is all around business so I wanted to highlight my knowledge in marketing and business.
Hey Troy, I love the humor and fun of your podcast and what you’re bringing to businesses around the world!
I’m Katie Leigh, A brand strategist out of Denver, CO. I help small business owners get clear in their brand, simplify their marketing, and find work-life balance. I’m breaking the mold of marketing by finding new ways to connect with customers without social media. That’s right, I quit social media over 3-months ago with no plans to go back and I’m loving every second of it. While this isn’t right for every business I love talking about the options of social when it comes to your brand and choosing strategies that work for you, whether that’s getting off, diving deeper, or figuring out something in between.
If you think a conversation around social media and marketing would be of value to your audience I would love to chat more!
Based off this email, Troy was excited to have a conversation about marketing in way that he hasn’t on his podcast before. And it turned out to be one of his best performing episodes at the time.
Here is another direction I went when I pitched to the podcast Quiet Lines Design (you can listen to that episode here)
My name is Katie Jackson and I’m an artist and wallpaper designer out of Denver, CO. I love the mission of your show to show up for creates and help them embrace this crazy world of making.
My own story is one of coming out of a decade of climbing my way up in marketing only to realize (after a lot of burn out) that marketing isn’t my passion and that I was always meant to be an artist. Over the last 2-years I’ve been working with holistic healers to recover from burn out and take on this new path as artist. For me that looks like embracing the slow loving movement, readjusting my mindset to be less type A and perfect, and embrace the messiness that is starting over.
I’d love to talk with about this journey or dive deeper into my passion for slow living and recovering from burn out which has influenced my art and my home decor line. Let me know if you think this would be a good fit for your show!
Katie Leigh Jackson
Again, this went on to be one of the best performing shows. I wanted to make sure that everything I give in the show is of value. And for me that turned into a handful of new followers on social and audience growth in my newsletter.
Your job when pitching, is to clearly state how you’ll add value to their project.
How To Pitch Your Art Brand To Podcasts
Decide upfront what value you have to offer. What do you want to talk about on podcasts? What are you an expert in? Then find the podcasts that have a similar audience to your ideal audience. From there, it’s about telling the host what you have to offer and how you’ll make their next episode one their audience will love.
One more thing to mention, is that cold emails often go unchecked or get pushed to the bottom of our to-do lists when we’re busy. So keep a running doc and remember to check back in with them once a week or every other week. If they aren’t interested they’ll let you know and you can stop following up otherwise, keep at it. Sometimes it takes 2-3 (even 6) emails until I get a yes. It’s not a no until they actually tell you they aren’t interested.
Now it’s time to bunker down and start doing the research so you can begin pitching!