While on a Southwest Airlines flight to New Orleans, I read an excellent article in their magazine (southwestmag.com) September 2014 issue titled, "Aristotle's Book of Love". The author, Jay Heinrichs, shares why he believes the lessons of Greek philosopher Aristotle, in his book Rhetoric, can help us build an adoring fan base today.
"The most powerful tool of persuasion is the leader's public ethos, or image. If people love you, they'll follow you anywhere. Aristotle taught that a compelling character is more persuasive than perfect logic."
How important this is when selling artwork! It's common knowledge among creatives that, "people buy from people they like." The best way, then, to become successful at selling artwork and creative services is to make ourselves a beloved person in the eyes of art buyers and their influencers. Mr. Heinrichs' article goes on to describe how to endear people to you; through genuine Caring, Craft and Cause.
CARING: When our family, friends, workmates and customers believe we have their best interests at heart, they will feel cared for in a way that is rare in today's frenetic self-centric experience. Implement this idea by speaking to and serving others in a personal, heartfelt way. Be known as the person who goes "the extra mile" for others.
CRAFT: Know your stuff and be sure your audience knows you do; learn all you can about your area of expertise and BE a knowledgeable authority without being cocky. Great leaders, or anyone who is looked up to, are creative problem solvers. Use "practical wisdom" to get innovative in resolving issues...sometimes throwing out the rule book and applying a fresh approach, creating new options and opportunity.
CAUSE: Stand for something larger. Align your 'virtue' with a cause that embodies the values of your audience. "What is the most important thing to you - or rather, the cause that will make your audience love you?"
Now, do a character check and discuss with the ones who love you the most. You may rewrite your resume to reflect elements of Caring, Craft and Cause.
Illustration by Nigel Buchanan
Happy Arting! Tristina :)