Ask a Gallery Owner | Should Artists Brag About Their Sales? – RedDotBlog

I received the following question from a reader in Calgary:

I have a burning question for you. I have discussed it with other artist friends, but I would like to hear your opinion on this if you have the time.

Is it prudent for an artist to boast about a sold painting on social media?

It makes me absolutely crazy to see artists post, in upper case, bold letters, flourished with multiple exclamation marks, SOLD!!

…Face Palm! ARGH!

Is this remotely helpful for one’s future sales?
Is this blatant bragging?
Is this amateurish?

I rarely post SOLD on my social media, let alone a tiny mention of the sale.

My thought is, creating and sales are what we are supposed to do, and it screams amateur to me. Am I off base here?

Do realtors ‘brag’ about the last house they sold? Do used car salesmen? How about a plastic surgeon…SOLD!! another pair of triple D’s!!


My Response:

Hi Michelle – it’s great to hear from you, and I’m glad you reached out with this question. I do understand what you are saying – that it feels braggadocious to share sales online or through social media. I would actually argue that it absolutely is a good idea to post sales in this way. Posting sold work can create buzz around your work with your followers – they will often congratulate you on the sale and feel genuinely excited for you. That’s all good energy and vibes going your direction. More importantly, however, when your past buyers see that others are buying your work, it helps them feel validated in their decision to have purchased your work. For those who haven’t yet bought from you, it helps move them closer to a purchase decision when they see that other discerning buyers are purchasing your work.

I especially love seeing posts where we get to see the artwork in its new home, and perhaps a photo of the artist and buyers.

Sales should be celebrated!

I know it feels like you are tooting your own horn to post sales, but if you don’t toot that horn, no one will!

Obviously you would want to be cautious not to overdo it, or to reveal personal information about the buyers, but as long as you’re careful with that, I would encourage you to go for it! I think you’ll find that your followers will love to see what’s going on with your sales.

P.S. just for fun I’m including a page from a local newspaper with a realtor’s ad where we see an illustration of exactly what you mentioned – the realtors listing 10 recent properties that they’ve sold.

Michelle replied:

Thanks so much for this feedback. You highlight good points. I will try it…it just won’t be double BOLD or UNDERLINE!!! “in your face” kind of post. A matter of fact, not fluffy, not bragging , just informational.

What do you think – is it a good idea for an artist to publicize recently sold artwork? How do you let your followers know about these sales? Have you seen other artists go too far in bragging about their sales? Share your thoughts in the comments below.

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