New Art and a Few Words About Pricing and Dealing With ‘Friends’

12 May

A.R.T. Hand Painting in Progress

Here’s a video of a custom tee shirt I did recently for a hip hop artist from south Florida. One thing about my brand A.R.T. is that I have complete creative freedom. As of now, I do not screen print. I thought about it, looked into pricing and found a few great companies in case I do decide to screen print designs in the future. But for now, I love being able to paint the tees. For one- its more fun, secondly- I get to be more involved and third- I get to make sure, up close and personal, that it looks great. I work for hours on one tee to make sure it looks great. I use a combination of a lot of techniques that I’ve acquired through books, youtube and other tutorials. How I do a particular tee depends on the design, so I have to decide how to combine the techniques from there.

A.R.T. Hand Painting in Progress

I feel like I’m reasonable with pricing. My T’s are $20 and for a custom one like you see in the video, its $30. At a time with the economy like it is, companies should do everything they can to accommodate their customers at a fair price. But at the same time I don’t think small businesses should sell themselves short. That can be a big reason for failure in small business. This is a quote from a workshop I took on financial management. “A common mistake made by small business owners is pricing too low,” says SCORE counselor Stanley Lakefish. “I’ve never known a business to go south due to high prices,” he says, “but I’ve known a few that did fail due to their prices being too low.” So it makes for an intense balancing act. One cool thing though is having sales. If you set your prices too high for an item and are having trouble selling it, just putting that item on sale will draw attention and possibly earn you your money back.

A.R.T.Just About Finished

Besides that point, the artist that I did the tee for in the video is a customer as well as a friend which brings me to a recommendation. Charge your friends for your work. If you don’t, everyone will be your friend. If you have problems, explain that it’s not personal and you simply cannot afford it. If anything- give them a discount for being a preferred customer. Other than that, remember that your best marketing tool is word of mouth, and if they pay for it and are happy, they will tell everyone. And likely, if your serious and passionate about your business, most good friends will want to support you.

~A. Rozier

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