Facebook for artists: 20 ways to get more fans

Facebook for artists: 20 ways to get more fans

Have you been struggling to find an audience for your art on Facebook? Today I’m going to show you how to start attracting fans, get more ‘likes’ on your artist Facebook page and leverage the people you’ve already engaged with to build an audience by creating great, share-worthy posts.

I’ll also get into some tricks for advanced targeting to make sure you’re attracting people who will actually be interested in your art and are more likely to convert into eventual buyers (the first rule of using Facebook for artists is that other visual artists aren’t usually the people who will purchase your work).

How your artist Facebook page works

On Facebook, before you can begin interacting with and engaging potential buyers, you need them to ‘like’ your page. The more people who ‘like’ your page, the more potential you have to get your artwork out there and sold.

Many artists work very hard at getting their first few fans and then lose steam, rather than reaching constantly further and further for new ‘likes’.

True, once you have a few early-adopters there will be a ripple effect if you are posting genuinely interesting, insightful, and engaging content on a regular basis; people will comment and share your posts giving it the potential for so-called ‘virality’. But there are always more fans to find beyond your immediate reach. Let’s take a look at how you can attract those first few page likes and then how you can use some of Facebook’s advanced tools to constantly widen your reach and engagement.

Turn your friends into fans

1, Share your Facebook fan page

If you already have a personal profile on Facebook, the best way to start building an audience is to invite your ‘friends’ to ‘like’ your page. The easiest way to do this is to share the page on your own personal timeline. You can do this by clicking the ‘Share’ button directly underneath your cover photo. Don’t forget to actually ask people to ‘like’ it; including a call to action is far more likely to instigate action on the part of whoever reads it.

Facebook for artists - sharing your new Artist Facebook page.

2, Message your friends on Facebook

You could also strategically share the page on other people’s timelines or privately message anyone who would be a guaranteed supporter with a link to the page inviting them to ‘like’ it.

3, Add a link in your personal profile

You can leverage your own personal profile page too by adding a link to your Facebook business page. From your profile page, click ‘Update info’, then ‘Edit’; under ‘Work and Education’, type in the name of your Facebook page and a link will be placed in the sidebar of your profile encouraging friends to click through and check it out.

Adding a link to your new Facebook page

4, Do an email blast

You can easily leverage a mailing list you have already built up via your website or just through personal contacts. Import your list in a CSV file to Facebook and anyone on it will be sent an invitation to ‘like’ your page.

Create irresistibly shareable content

Status updates are your main line of communication and you have a few options when creating them. You can simply type something, include a link, add a photo or video, or publish offers, events and milestones.

You can increase your chances of this content being shared and reaching more people who will potentially ‘like’ your page in many ways, but here a few to get you started:

5, Always post images

When we started including an image every time we posted to Facebook from TextileArtist.org, we noticed a dramatic increase in the amount of times our posts were shared.

Photos are the most powerful thing you can post on Facebook; this is a huge advantage for visual artists, as you probably have a ready-made collection of fantastic images.

6, Include a Call to Action

Invite people to share your content; if you don’t ask, you don’t get. Include a call to action to increase the likelihood of your posts being shared. If you were posting an image of a work-in-progress for example, you might say: How do you think this piece is coming along? Let me know your thoughts and don’t forget to share.

7, Add value

Your fans are far more likely to share content that serves them in some way; does it inspire, inform, educate, entertain? Always keep your fans in mind when posting.

8, Join the conversation

What do your fans enjoy talking about on social media? Do a bit of research and find out; this way you can post your take on a hot topic and increase your chances of being shared.

9, Go ‘Behind the scenes’

Posts that give people a glimpse into how you create your work as an artist always prove popular; people love to feel party to a secret. Posting images of your studio, sketchbook, materials, even a piece of work you’ve given up on because it just isn’t working can greatly enhance how ‘real’ you seem and get your content more widely shared.

10, Inspire

Have you noticed how people love to share those inspirational quotes on Facebook? Why not use some quotes that inspire you as an artist and create some images in Adobe Photoshop?

Leverage traffic to your own artist website

According to the 2013 State of Inbound Marketing Report, more than half of its users visit Facebook every single day; your posts can act as a constant reminder of your artwork, so it’s important to let anyone who lands on your own site know that you are also on Facebook.

There are two very easy ways to do this:

11, Use social media buttons

The first is to include a button that links through to your Facebook page (make sure it opens in another window to avoid visitors forgetting about your own website and getting distracted on Facebook). You can find some great plugins for your website at AddThis.com.

Social media buttons to link through to your artist fan page on Facebook

12, Add a ‘like’ box to your sidebar

The second is to encourage visitors to your site to ‘like’ your Facebook page directly without having to leave your website at all. Including a ‘like’ box in a sidebar of your site is the perfect way to achieve this. You can find the html code for the Facebook ‘like’ box here: Developers.Facebook.com. The inclusion of faces of other people who already like your page is a clever way of saying ‘look how popular I already am!’

While we’re on the subject, how about clicking ‘like’ on the TextileArtist.org Facebook page?


Find your ideal fans

Information about your current fans can help you identify exactly who is attracted to your artwork. In turn this can help you target your posts and attract more like-minded people.

13, Key into Facebook Insights

You can get access to basic information about the Facebook users who currently ‘like’ your artist page on Facebook by clicking on Insights directly from your Facebook page. Then click on ‘People’ to learn about your audience’s gender, age, where they are from and more. You can use this information in your strategy to attract similar people to your page by targeting posts at specific groups.

Using Facebook Insights to learn about your fans

14, Use Graph Search

But Insights can only tell you so much. A little-known and under-used feature of Facebook is Graph Search, a tool to help you understand your audience on a deeper level, by finding out detailed information about them and their interests.

You can’t use Graph Search directly from your business page, so you’ll need to switch over to your personal profile to leverage all the great information available to you.

Here’s a quick overview of how to use Graph search.

To get access to basic information about your current fans, type ‘Fans of YourPageName’ into the long search box at the top of Facebook. Once you click through, you’ll see a list of your fans with some information about them.

Using Graph Search on Facebook to find out about your fans

This information can be useful, as information about each of your fans is displayed, but it can be a time consuming job trying to find a correlation between them.

That’s where the real beauty of graph search comes in. The function enables you to type in longer phrases, such as ‘Pages liked by fans of YourPageName’.

Target other Facebook pages where your current fans hang out to increase your reach on Facebook

These pages will inevitably have fans that don’t currently ‘like’ your page. You can actively engage with these people by commenting and sharing posts on the other pages they ‘like’; this way they will be introduced to your page and are more likely to become your fans too.

You could also try typing in ‘Favourite interests of fans of YourPageName’ to discover topics that might engage your audience and encourage them to share your content more, or ‘Friends on fans of YourPageName’ to find people who are likely to have similar interests to fans of your artist Facebook page.

Pay to promote

15, Take advantage of Facebook ads

When promoting artwork on Facebook, their built-in ad system is one of the cheapest and most effective ways to build an audience. 75% of all new page likes on Facebook come from ads, so even with a small budget, you’re likely to see a good result.

Why you should be advertising on Facebook

    • Ads are very easy and quick to create
    • You can specifically target people with certain interests or who like certain pages (using the information from Facebook Insights and Graph search)
    • They are very inexpensive in relation to other types of online advertising
    • They can really boost your traffic

Tips for creating ads to increase page ‘likes’

The aim of this article is to show you how to get more fans so with that in mind, go to your Ad Manager and choose to create an ad to increase page ‘likes’.

Create a Facebook ad to increase likes on your Artist page

When writing the ad copy, use clear and concise text; something that gives a clear reason why a potential fan should ‘like’ your page. Who are you? Why should they like you?

Use an eye-catching image (600×225 pixels); it’s been proven that faces in images attract more click-throughs.

Use an eye-catching image in your Facebook ads

Remove the option for the ad to appear in the right column. Ads that appear in the news feed are far more likely to engage a Facebook user as they appear as part of the newsfeed.

Remove the right side bar option from the Facebook advert

Carefully target your ad so that it’s only shown to certain groups of people; use information from your page Insights as well as Graph search to determine these groups. For example, if I were creating an ad for TextileArtist.org, I might choose to only target women over 18 (as I know they are our main audience) and in the ‘Interests’ field I might target people who already ‘like’ related pages, such as Fiber Art Now and Selvedge magazine.

Highly target your ad to your potential audience of art fans on Facebook

Never miss an opportunity to promote your artist Facebook page for free

The ways in which you can tell people about your Facebook page on and offline are endless. Why not try some of the following?

16, Connect via your blog

Insert links to your Facebook page every time you write a blog post. You can add a link within the body of the article if it fits naturally to talk about your Facebook page. If not, why not include a call to action at the end of the post, something like; Like’ my Facebook page to make sure you never miss a blog post.

17, Tell everyone you meet

Whenever you give a presentation or teach a workshop, remember to let your audience or students know about your Facebook page.

18, Put it in print

Include the URL for your Facebook page in any offline promotional material, like brochures, flyers and business cards

19, Take advantage of your everyday emails

In your email signature, add a link to your Facebook page.

20, Go social

Link to Facebook from the profile of all your other social networks like Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest and Google+.

Using Facebook for artists and attracting fans requires constancy and consistency in your approach; be patient, persistent and, most of all, keep your fans at the forefront of your mind at all times. Don’t fall foul of being overly self-promotional with no consideration for the people who ‘like’ your page. Instead, respond and interact with them and you can build up a dedicated team of cheerleaders for you and your art.

OK, so I better practice what I preach, right? Click here to ‘like’ TextileArtist.org’s Facebook page and ensure you never miss out on top tips for promoting art online.

More articles on TextileArtist.org you might find helpful:

FREE E-BOOK: How my journey into textile art began, a fascinating insight into the work of textile artist Sue Stone
Monday 23rd, October 2017 / 22:43
Joe

About the author

Joseph Pitcher is the son of textile artist Sue Stone. He is an actor and voice-over artist and has worked at the RSC, the National Theatre, West End theatres and several other leading regional venues across the UK. Find Joe on Google

View all articles by Joe

21 Comments on “Facebook for artists: 20 ways to get more fans

  • Nice post! I didn’t know about the Graph Search, so learned something new.

    One thing I would add is that I see many in our community who don’t even set up a business page in the first place. Even large businesses use “personal” pages to try to grow their following, a practice that is detrimental to their growth. Facebook can be confusing and it’s always changing, so it can be frustrating for those who haven’t taken the time to dig a bit and learn the ropes. We basically have three different types of destinations on Facebook: personal pages, business pages and groups. You can switch your identity between personal and business pages, but you can only use your personal identity in groups, which is a shame.

    There are many reasons to use a business page instead of a personal one to grow your audience, but the main one is that if you are using your personal one, you force your followers to become “friends”. Some people actually do keep their personal pages for real friends and family and by having to become friends with businesses they make their personal data available to you, which they might not want to do. So, by not having a business page set up, you immediately set up a barrier for those people who might be interested in what you are doing but don’t want to get personal.

    The other big reason to have a business page is that it is public, shows up on Google searches and has many more tools for sharing than personal ones have. I rarely share business news (exhibits, new work, announcements, etc.) from personal pages because of the privacy settings that might be attached to them. Instead, I share news from the Pages Feed (found in the left column when you go to your Home feed or in groups). Facebook has been our top referrer for TAFA (www.tafalist.com) after Google searches, so we invest a lot of time in sharing our member news there. Everything we share there becomes public data and has viral potential. It’s the best way we have found to help our members get seen. We also try to help them grow their pages by tagging their images and creating live links to their pages in the text (add an @ symbol before their page name to make it live). We’ve created a nice directory on our page by using our like box for our member’s business pages (do that by liking their page with your business identity). I can’t stress how important it is to have consistent branding everywhere: the same name on your website, blog, and social media places. I see so many use a different one for each place which becomes a nightmare for customers and for those of us trying to promote a business.

    I’ve tried Facebook ads, but find them expensive and have had low returns from them. Promoted posts have worked the best for us. Facebook is trying to monetize the site, so it hides about 70% of the content we are all generating on our Pages from our followers. If people checked their Pages feed, we could make sure that we are seeing the pages we follow, but most people don’t. If you like a page and then don’t interact with it, Facebook blocks it from your feed. That means you have to post constantly, daily, if you want your audience to see what you are posting, a hard thing to do for most studio artists.

    If you don’t have enough of your own content, make your page interesting by sharing tips and news from your field and help your peers by sharing their public content. Facebook also makes a post more visible by the number of likes and shares it gets, so it makes a big difference to be social on the content that you really do want to support.

    People can get fed up with social media, the time and energy it takes to use effectively, but Facebook is the top platform that I find to be the most useful. We can all help each other figure out how to best use it as it continues to morph into new applications. Business pages are in the process of getting a face-lift in the near future and from what I have read, the apps we have in the boxes under the banner will be hidden, making it even harder for our followers to use them, but we just have to adapt and keep reinforcing what we want people to see and do through what we share.

    Reply
    • Joe

      Wow – thanks so much for adding such value to the conversation Rachel. I really agree with a lot of what you say. In fact, some of your advice is going to be reiterated in upcoming articles Facebook basics for Artists and Making the most of Facebook for artists.

      We have only really invested time in Facebook so far (in terms of social media) but have certainly found it really effective in driving traffic back to this site. We’ve honed the way we use it and are constantly learning; I think much of the frustration and time-wasting of social media can be obliterated by being organised and disciplined. Get a great strategy together, schedule posts in bulk at the beginning of the week, and log out of Facebook when you’re trying to get other things done.

      I also agree that promoted posts are good, but we had quite a bit of success using the method suggested in this article with ads; the great thing about doing it this way is that they don’t really look like ads – they only appear in people’s newsfeed.

      Thanks again for a great contribution to the post Rachel.

      Reply
    • I want to know facebook fans are not real, I’m not a lot of facebook fans, there are many friends to buy cheap facebook fans, such as Forever Social Marketing, they say is true fans, I want real facebook fans

      Reply
  • All great advice, and good stuff from our TAFA Guru-ette as well.

    One *does* have to be a bit cautious with constantly adding it to one’s personal page though—it can really turn off people to constantly see you doing PR, especially if you are the type who never leaves feedback on *their* personal or business page.

    Hyperbole tempered is best 🙂

    Reply
    • Joe

      Hey Arlee – I agree. I think start off by getting your ‘friends’ to become ‘fans’ but don’t constantly share everything from your fan page on your personal profile; if they want to see it they will have ‘liked’ your page. Leave everyone else to play Angry Birds!

      Reply
  • You can get too much of a good thing. My Facebook page started to get hundreds of new likes a day – a majority of them I know had no real interest in textile art. I am not sure why this happened but once I reached 11,000, I decided to unpublished my page to avoid more insincere traffic. I started a group page instead, where I can approve the followers ahead of time. It makes for a much smaller, but more intimate audience. The disadvantage with a group page is the inability to promote and link to the page as you would an artist business page, also followers can only sign up through their personal profile not as a page administrator. I would love to learn if anyone else have attracted “unwanted” followers on their pages and if so how to solve the problem.

    Reply
    • Joe

      Hi Lotta – I’m interested, how did you know that your ‘fans’ had no real interest in textile art? I can’t think of a motivation for people to ‘like’ your page if they weren’t interested in it. Did you do any type of paid promotion outside of Facebook?

      Reply
      • The number of fans grew from 1,000 in may of 2013 to 11,700 when I took it offline a month ago. New likes would come in 100 at a time, many with names that did not sound real, using alliterations or made-up words. Beside a few odd sharings of images, there where never any abuse, but also no interactions from these groups. I have not done any paid promotion of my page – on Facebook or elsewhere – but I have links to it on my website and blog. I am realizing that I probably seem a bit paranoid, but something is definitely up… My main worry was that I would expose my genuine followers, to problems in the future. Thank you for your excellent advise in this post and others. I love reading your blog.

        Reply
        • Joe

          That sounds like spam of some sort. How strange! Sorry to hear that – I’m going to look into what it might be. Thanks for sharing your thoughts.

          Reply
      • It happens often when page admins hire third party publicists who use grey hat methods, like clickjacking, bot profiles etc. So advertisers should be cautious while hiring marketing agencies. Bigger names are better.

        Reply
  • Nice, informative post, Joe.
    I always wonder watching you guys, who write such detailed freebies for the benefit of others. I often dont have the patience to write a paragraph.

    I used the graph search to spy on some competitors and get a bunch of targeted optin leads. Dont yet frown on me.
    Facebook kept the loophole open, when graph search was newly introduced.
    Facebook ads work great if the page is of common interest.
    And I always like taking shortcuts.
    I have also tried some reciprocal liking system, eg http://shareyt.com to see how easily I can generate likes and followers for my fb pages.
    Some people use content locker type system to get more optin fans, some use competition.
    Contests are of course a great way if you have some budget.
    And nothing works better than being active on groups and forums if your niche is narrow..
    Tried to add some more value.
    See you on the next post 🙂

    Reply
  • Ι’m no longer ⲣositive the place yoս’re getting your info, but
    good topiс. I needs to spend some time learning much more or working oսt more.

    Thanks for fantastic information ӏ was on the
    lookout for this info for my mission.

    Reply
  • Thanks but I’ve done all of those things and in 10 years I’ve only managed to get 630 fans. I post nearly everyday and at one point people were really following, now I’m lucky if I have a few likes. I don’t know why people have switched off…my art is getting stronger.

    Reply
  • Wow, Just amazing.
    Loved this article.
    I have been looking for this article for a very long time and finally, I found it. And now I can gain more like on my Facebook page by following your procedures.
    Thanks for sharing this valuable article.
    keep the good work mate.

    Reply
  • Hi there,
    I was really looking for a detailed step by step guide to do this because I was really confused about doing this. I’m glad that you just shared this helpful information with us. Please keep us informed like this.
    Thanks a lot, buddy.
    Keep posting good stuff. Cheers

    Reply

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Hello and welcome to TextileArtist.org

TextileArtist.org is a place for textile artists and art enthusiasts to be inspired, learn from the best, promote their work and communicate with like-minded creatives.

From the bookshelf

What the artists say

"Textileartist.org is an invaluable resource. I am constantly sending students there and sharing it with other practitioners".

Nigel Cheney
Lecturer in Embroidered Textiles at NCAD

"The beauty of TextileArtist.org is that whenever you visit you'll discover something that you didn't already know".

Rachel Parker
Textile Study Group Graduate of the year 2012

"TextileArtist.org gives contemporary textile practice a voice; leading artists, useful guides and a forum for textiles".

Cas Holmes
Textile Artist and teacher

"This website is exactly what we need in the textiles world. A fantastic inspirational resource".

Carol Naylor
Textile and Embroidery Artist

  Get updates from TextileArtist.org via RSS or Email

Most Viewed

Get our free guide: The Creative Path

  • 20 Top Textile and Fiber Artists Share their Creative Secrets
  • Learn how professional artists beat procrastination, boost their productivity and consistently put their ideas into action with our brand new guide The Creative Path.