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Making art into a business

How to get companies interested?
Taste and colors aren’t up for discussion, and art, you either like it or you don’t… but I do try to present people with things I like first, because it’s hard to sell things you don’t like. So my opinion is that when you know your product well, when you love what you do, it’s easy to sell to other people. You don’t need lengthy speeches because it comes from the bottom of your heart.

Are they easy to convince?
We encounter two types of clients: either people who don’t know anything about art and would like to take interest in it anyway. It’s a lot easier with them, we have time to talk, I explain my concept. Then they say “I’ll have to check with the company to see if it’s possible, if we have any budget for it.” Or you have people who have no interest in art whatsoever and say “I don’t think it will be possible.”

How can you assess an artist’s profitability?
The first test is to offer it to my clients as a rental, so I can see how people react. If reactions are positive, I know it’s an artist I can keep working with and why not publicize them in the future.

When is a contract signed?
When things move very quickly, it takes a month after the first contact… and you need a lot of luck calling, getting a meeting, and finding a company that happens to need your services at that very time. That’s just perfect! It happened to me with a law firm: I called them randomly, my call was put through to the right person, we emailed back and forth. Two weeks later, the art was on the walls because they needed it: they had an event and needed artwork, decorations, the timing was right so it was quick. Otherwise, it takes time. Because you need to decide on a budget, because it wasn’t planned, because the board of directors has to meet first… It can take two or three months. Right now I have a client who things are moving forward with but we’ve been talking since June. Our first meeting was in June of last year! You often need patience in B2B, it takes a lot of patience.