In a perfect world, artists and content creators could work without the constant worry of funding and money looming over our heads. Unfortunately it’s not a perfect world, and in an age where content creators are a dime-a-dozen and sponsors are a dying species, you’ve got to have business savvy to succeed in your pursuits.
The City of New York recognized that, and an article in Sunday’s New York Times explains how city government is aiming to teach artists about turning their work into business.
â€œDoes everyone have Excel?,â€ Peter Cobb, a lawyer and administrator at the New York Foundation for the Arts, which runs the program, asked the class last Saturday. â€œFor next week, your assignment is to make a list of all your expenses for 2009.â€
The sighs and complaints that followed were proof of the challenging task Mr. Cobb and his colleagues have taken on: trying to teach people who like to color outside the lines about drawing up business plans, budgeting and making a sales pitch.
YouMakeMedia has talked in the past about various web services and how they help (or hinder) your money-making, but it’s exciting to see a program that delves even deeper, helping artists think more consciously about the business end of what they do. It’s easy to think that it’s as simple as throwing ads next to your content, or selling copies of your output, but having a deeper understanding of business will give you a more rewarding experience (and a more rewarding return) when it comes to doing the selling.
Do you have any tips on learning the business side of arts and content creation? Share them in the comments!