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3.5 Distribution Outlets

Dave Arnold, Mr. Sign, talks of turning his passion into a business. 

Please note: this video contains profanity.

Selecting Distribution Outlets Reflection Questions

For each artist, filmmaker, performer or writer, distribution outlets will significantly very. You might be thinking publishers and agents, fairs and galleries, music halls and clubs, screening locations or any combination of other venues.

1. What are some distribution outlets–both within and outside of your discipline–that you have seen artists use to distribute their work? 

2. How do you currently make your work available to people?

3. List advantages and/or disadvantages to the particular method(s) you use. For instance, are certain methods more time-intensive, but get in the hands of audiences more directly? Have you been more successful in generating profit through one than others? Are some better at developing long-standing relationships or quick transactions?

4. Where is your target audience when they are looking for things similar to what you are doing?

5. Where are your audiences more generally? Can you put your work in unlikely places where your target buyers already go?

7. Have you seen artists use any nontraditional or outside-the-box methods for distributing their work? Can you follow (or improve upon) their lead?

6. Which distribution outlets do you believe present the most opportunity for you in the future? 

7. Who do you know that could assist you in getting your art in those places?

8. How do you plan to gather additional information about new distribution outlets?

9. Will new outlets stretch your resources? Would the payoff be worth it?

10. Are there cases when you should pay (or pay more) for getting your work in the right location?

Making The Sale Reflection Questions

Note: If the term "sale" is completely off-putting, try using a different term, like "support" or "exchange" or "unicorn" if it helps.

1. In the last year, what sales tactics did you employ at each point of distribution (Maybe that you didn't even realize you were doing at the time)?

2. Did your strategy differ depending on where you were and to whom you were talking? 

3. How would you rate your success for each thing you tried? Was it related to your comfort level or their interest level?

4. How would you modify your current strategy to help you "close a deal" faster, sell more work or get a higher price?

5. Identify a small step that you can take to improve your next sale. Add this to your list of goals in the business plan.

6. What local, regional or national resources can help you get your work in the hands of the people who want to pay for it?

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