Shannon Fennell's Blog

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Business Tips for Face Painters, Body Artists and Make-Up Artists #9 – Soliciting Work

September 1st means it is time for the ninth excerpt from my e-book The Business of Face Painting.  Of course, if you would like to get all the information included in my book right now you can find out how here.

The Business of Face Painting was published in September of 2009 and I am working on the final stages of the companion book The Art of Face Painting which we hope to have out sometime this year.

So, now how do you get those face painting jobs?

The following is an excerpt from Chapter Four of  The Business of Face Painting.


Soliciting Work

Use the information you have compiled on your target markets to determine those potential clients that you want to get your information in front of.  You want to make them aware of your services and why they should hire you over anyone else.  I tend to choose one specific group to target each year based on my current interests or potential for business in that area.  By concentrating my efforts on one narrow area I can keep my costs reasonable and am able to easily track the success of the campaign for any given period of time.  One year I targeted daycares and schools, the next restaurants, then nightclubs, then festivals, etc.

Some events may require you to submit an application and pay a fee to set-up at their event.  At these types of activities you would most likely be charging pay-per-face.  Decide if these are the type of events you want to go after and then inquire about the vendor application process.  Be aware that some events may let anyone who pays their fee set-up so you might end up in competition with a dozen other painters.  Try to negotiate exclusivity so that you are the only face painter.  Location is also very important to your earnings.

Choose how you want to approach your potential clients – by letter, with a postcard, with an email, in person.  Then prepare your materials.

I’ve included some sample letters and emails [these are included in the ebook] that you can use to solicit business.  These are the actual letters that I have sent to potential customers.  The one called “Introductory Letter for Face Painting” is a generic letter that I sent to organizers and associations that hold events in the region.  “Restaurant letter” is self-explanatory.  And “New Year Letter” went out to all my customers and selected potential customers – I got a lot of bookings confirmed for the next season by sending out the New Years letter in January every year.  The “festival email” is an actual email I used to solicit a gig at large local event.  Feel free to use these as examples to make up your own versions.

Using Kryolan Interferenz Bach Blue with other colours

© Shannon Fennell, 2009

with material from “Designs and Templates Volume 1” © November 2007

and “Designs and Templates Volume 2” © March 2008