Saturday, May 12, 2012

Plein Air Convention: Part 9 - B. Eric Rhoads, Marketing Genius!

B. Eric Rhodes standing on stage at the opening of each morning.
As Olive Oil would say, "What a man, what a man!"

Yes, Eric is quite a guy! I've certainly never met anyone like him before. Entrepreneur, Radio Man, Magazine Guru, Marketing Genius and Mastermind of the Publisher's Invitational 'Paint the Adirondacks, and then, the 1st Annual Plein Air Convention. Just a few things in his long resume that prove he really is a marketing genius.

He has ideas, and 'people' that make his ideas come to fruition. Not a bad place to be.

And I have to say, that even while the Convention was going on, he was still adding things to the program. For instance, he flew in a woman from England to translate for the 'Russian Master' - before and while he was painting.

And one of the things he added along the way of planning a phenomenal Convention was his 'Early Bird Marketing Boot Camp'. This took place each morning starting at 6:30 AM. Need I say the house was packed? Coffee was served along with breakfast!

Here's what he started with: Get more galleries, change your thinking patterns, and you must work harder than you ever have in your life. Next, Eric went on to tell the story of how during the Great Depression of 1929, Post Cereal, the #1 Brand in their market, stopped advertising. Kellogg's was a small business at that time, but they started to advertise, and by 1933 Kellogg's became the #1 Brand in that market.

What did Eric do? In the midst of this recession that we have been having, he re-launched Plein Air Magazine!

What did he tell us to do?

Go see other artist's paint, those that are at he top of their game.
Learn about marketing.
Meet People - for camaraderie and marketing.
Paint - and learn something new to teach.

Artist case in point: Henry Darger

The above link is to an article in the San Francisco Chronicle from 2008. It talks about Henry's life as a menial hospital worker, and his reclusive life, and the amazing work that was discovered just before he died at the age of 81.

What's the point? no one knew Henry was creating scads of art! He never made a penny, but now his work is in museums and sells for at least $80,000 a piece!

Click here to see more images.

• There is no romance in being a starving artist, or in thinking that an artist is not a business person.
• There is nothing evil, wrong, or manipulative in marketing.
Now, here's where you start :


Anonymous said...

Debra, you are gem to share this with us all! thank you, thank you!!! Now, I will stop feeling guilty for doing the website, the blog, the painting, the magnet on the car, the business cards, THE BRAND!!!

Love you!
Donna Pierce-Clark

Donna Pierce-Clark said...

OOPS, they said I was anonymous and i'm not.........Donna

Sri Debi said...

Donna, remember Henry Darger, he was anonymous and got nowhere! Sort of like my Sri Debi 'handle' when I created my blog. Not sure if I can change that. Thanks for leaving your comment, everyone always emails be behind the scenes.

Did you write your obit?

Michelle Morris said...

I like this post because I find so often that artists feel the work should sell itself. That marketing cheapens it somehow! Good marketing advice! Sound like it was well worth the trip.

Sri Debi said...

Michelle, thanks for your comment. This is such an important topic for artists, at least most of them. From what I've seen, most artists are just afraid to blow their own horn. Of course it looks marvelous coming from some outside 'reliable' source (could even beet a husband of a friend), but I think that artists that I know that have held back, are afraid of looking like they are bragging. So they wait for someone else to notice and do the job for them.

Eric Rhoads said...

Thanks for the kind words. Glad you enjoyed it!