While Coronavirus has caused irreparable damage to many small businesses, there is a glimmer of hope coming out of Half Moon Bay. Small business owner, Christie Smith, the owner of Unleashed Art Gallery, is a story of art and inspiration. Even though her gallery is closed to physical visitors, she has been utilizing a small but engaged online community and video calls to continue to sell her art. She has actually spent more time packing and sending orders than she did when the gallery was previously open. A lot can be learned from her story.
Activating Small, Engaged Online Community
When it comes to shifting from in-person to online communities, numbers do not always matter. While you may think that you need a large following to transition sales online that is simply not true. Having less but more engaged followers is actually more advantageous when it comes to turning followers into clients.
Just because someone can’t travel to physically see your artwork in person, it does not mean they won’t buy it. Christie Smith, pivoted her gallery to offer virtual viewings of her artwork via FaceTime and has actually seen a rise in sales.
Don’t Forget Why You Started
At a young age, Christie Smith was drawn to athletics. After attending, Methodist College for Golf and being a part of three National Championships she enjoyed a 25-year career as an LPGA Golf Professional. Then about seven years ago she discovered the power of art. She followed her passions and became an artist and gallery owner.
Tap Into Your Strengths
Her competitive nature rooting back to her times in sports is what has kept her drive going both from a creative aspect and from a business perspective. When the going got tough, she continued to create and connect with others to share her joy-inspiring art pieces.
“This taps into my competitive past as an LPGA golf professional. I prepare mentally for each individual piece of artwork, as I did prior to every competitive game. When I start a piece, the resin magically chooses its direction and I have to adjust accordingly to allow the process to lead, just as the game unfolded.”
Remember, engage with your online community no matter the size of it, pivot your business to be as virtual as possible, don’t forget why you started, and tap into your strengths when it comes to continuing your small business during these strange times.