It's okay to go off-script.
In this episode, I talk with ceramic artist Patricia Griffin. If you visit her website during certain times of the year, you won't see anything for sale because she has sold out. Zero inventory. What you will see are items she has sold and an opportunity to get on her list so you don't miss a chance to purchase the next time her shop opens.
Patricia and I discuss what she refers to as events — the 3- or 4-times a year sales of her ceramics that sell out within hours and have led to a dramatic increase in income. She'll describe the philosophy behind them, the promotional timeline, the collaborations to help raise money for nonprofits, and how the events are a valuable tool for her to cultivate relationships with buyers and potential buyers.
The book that changed the course of Patricia’s artistic life. (2:04)
Patricia’s cautious first step into selling her art. (6:35)
A visual description of Patricia’s functional stoneware. (8:52)
An overview of Patricia’s sales philosophy and the online sales events that bring in more orders than she can quickly fill. (11:20)
The learning curve that comes with selling art in a non-traditional way. (15:46)
Cultivating a studio friends list allows Patricia to connect with interested buyers. (17:47)
Timing sales events and refining the sales process. (21:50)
How many pieces does Patricia have ready to go when her events go live? (26:25)
The benefit of connecting your Instagram feed to your sales website. (27:14)
Marketing for sales events and what launch day looks like for Patricia. (28:53)
Collaborating with a non-profit does not have to mean donating your work for free. (33:05)
Hosting online events, for Patricia, has resulted in a dramatic increase in sales and skills. (34:43)
Stories of creating connections and increasing loyalty with buyers. (36:20)
How to create the deadlines that will result in increased sales. (39:16)
The success of Patricia’s most recent online event — by the numbers. (41:04)
Which social media platform brings in the greatest number of customers? (43:18)
How does Patricia balance the need to produce art for her soul and the need to produce art for her business? (46:07)
Intro and outro music by Wildermiss
“I like the association with the people who are buying my art through online sales. I don’t know that doing it another way would cultivate the same kind of relationships that I have now.” — Patricia Griffin
“Some of these people had been on my email list for years and maybe just purchased something for the first time.” — Patricia Griffin
“Hosting online events has been really beneficial, not only to my business but also to my skills.” — Patricia Griffin
“I don’t think I would have had those commissions if it wasn’t for the online events.” — Patricia Griffin
“I’ve really felt the pull to do something else and get back to some of the experimenting that I like to do.” — Patricia Griffin
“I’m continually walking that tight line between the need to produce art in my soul and the need to produce art in my business hat.” — Patricia Griffin
Patricia Griffin is a potter-artist in the seaside community of Cambria on California's central coast. She makes functional ceramics that are hand-thrown and hand-built and etched with designs that look like woodcuts. Griffin’s work is sold primarily through shopping events held three to four times a year on her website.