The following is adapted from my upcoming ebook, Try It & See: How to Get Sh*t Done While Overanalyzing Everything, which is available for pre-order now!
Every artists and maker I know wants to bring in more money from their art or craft. I’m sure you do as well. It’s the reason you read my blog.
Yet, I’m always amazed by how many artists and makers say they want to make more money, but aren’t actually doing the things they need to do to make that money.
And the biggest thing that most artists and makers aren’t doing:
They aren’t asking for the sale directly.
Whether that’s putting a strong call to action in emails to your list (or actually emailing your list at all), reaching out to stores, or asking someone if they’d like to buy your work while you’re talking about it, making money often means asking for the sale directly.
But most artists and makers fall short when they get to this critical ask.
They dread asking for the sale directly.
Asking for the sale directly brings up fears of rejection. It also brings up doubts about the value of you and your work.
So instead of asking for the money, you flit around doing all kinds of other tasks that feel like you’re doing work for your business, but don’t actually get you paid.
You work on trying to make your website better, even though no one is actually visiting it.
You obsess over your about page, even though no one is actually reading it.
You research all the ways you could be making money, instead of just sending the email or making the phone call that actually makes you money.
I get it. Asking for money can be scary.
Especially if you’re asking for that money in exchange for something you’ve poured your heart and soul into.
The reason for this is simple. When you ask for money, there are inevitably some people who are going to say no. That’s the way it works.
But that no terrifies so many creative business owners. The fear of rejection is so strong that you don’t ask for the sale, even if you really want to make money.
But here’s the deal.
You will get rejected.
You will hear more nos than yeses.
I recently read that 1% is a normal (for many, even good) conversion rate in business. That means that for every one sale, you’re going to hear 99 nos.
Obviously, this percentage doesn’t hold true for everyone. If you have really warm leads, your conversion rate will be higher.
But it’s never going to be 100%. I doubt it will ever even be 50%.
Which means, at the end of the day, you’re going to hear more nos than yeses.
Rejection is part of sales.
Not asking for the sale because you fear rejection is like refusing to breathe because you’re afraid of carbon dioxide.
It’s a natural part of the process.
If you want to make money, you’ve got to learn to ask for the sale. And that means getting used to hearing nos.
Or crickets. Because nos come as much in the form of silence as they do in an actual no.
Accepting nos as a natural part of the process becomes easier when you can recognize that most of the time, the reasons someone didn’t buy have nothing to do with you.
Think about how many times you added something to your online cart, only to get distracted by something (a snack, the TV, etc.) and never complete your purchase.
Think about how many times you wanted something, but couldn’t buy it in that moment, because you didn’t have a use for it or you simply didn’t have the money at the time.
The same is true of the people you’re selling to.
Which is why you can’t take rejection personally.
I know this is easier said than done, but if you want to build a business around your art or craft, you’ve got to develop this skill.
Instead of worrying about the nos, you need to focus on the yeses.
Sure, it might feel more natural to focus on the people that didn’t buy. After all, there are more of them. But focusing on the nos (before or after you’ve gotten them) is what keeps you from asking for the sale in the first place.
So you’ve got to train yourself to focus on the yeses. Imagine the people who will buy what you’re selling. Track and celebrate the sales that come in, whether it’s one sale, one hundred, or one million.
Yes, asking for the sale can be scary at first. But the more you do it, the easier it gets. At some point, you may even find it becomes fun to start asking people for money.
That’s how I feel, because when people give me money, it means I get to do more of the work I love.
So instead of worrying about how many people will say no, focus instead on the potential that at least some people might say yes.
And that those yeses are what allows you to make even more of your art or products.
But you can only get those yeses if you actually ask for the sale.
So whether you’re emailing your list, reaching out to stores, or talking to potential customers in person, don’t be afraid to ask for the sale.
It’s the only way you’ll bring in the money you need to actually support the work you love to make.
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My new ebook won’t help you get more done by giving you some productivity system that you’re probably not going to stick with anyway. But it will address the mindsets and mental roadblocks, from perfectionism to overanalyzing to yes, fear of rejection – that keep you from accomplishing everything you’d like to in your business! Try It & See is officially available April 23rd, but you can save $10 when you pre-order by Monday, April 22nd!