Our Observations

Understanding your target market in the artworld

07 February 2022

Understanding your target market in the artworld

It’s time to demystify the artworld target market and to grow your business through identifying and finetuning your target market. This is pivotal to a successful marketing strategy.  We’ve all heard the phrase ‘Content is King’. Content is what drives potential buyers to your gallery, website, or Instagram account. But generating good content that will hold its own on social media platforms that are oversaturated with content is not so easy to do.  A key step to achieving this and your marketing objectives and not wasting money is identifying your key audience.  

Understanding the art market and your audience analytics are two easy steps to hone in on your target market so that you get the best results out of your marketing campaign by clearly identifying who it is you want to attract. Grab a pen and notebook, let’s start the process…

Understanding the art market

To communicate to your target audience effectively, you must understand who they are. The art industry is complex and broad. There are many different factors that come into play and drive purchasing behavior. It is vital to know who you want to talk to and who you want to attract. The world is an entirely different place from what it was three years ago. What was accepted as normal and the way of the world in 2019, is just not how we do it anymore. Lockdowns across the world have changed how people behave, how they consume media, and ultimately how they purchase art. 

Art consumers come in many forms, and it is important to understand emerging trends in the artworld and how trends have impacted your different potential target markets.

Firstly, let’s understand the concept of the ‘Artworld’. According to Wikipedia, the artworld can be defined as: “… everyone involved in producing, commissioning, presenting, preserving, promoting, chronicling, criticizing, buying and selling fine art. It is recognized that there are many art worlds, defined either by location or alternative definitions of fine art. However, we all know that the ‘artworld’ was traditionally made up of an elite number of critics, collectors, and big gallerists. These select few tastemakers made key decisions about what was deemed acceptable and collectible and what was not. 

Art was sold at fairs, exhibitions, and galleries. There was an order to the artworld.

Then in the blink of an eye, the entire artworld changed. Covid-19 and its severe restrictions on events and life as we knew it brought about a new order. Here are some of the changes and trends that have changed the face of art as we know it:

  • The bottom fell out of the art market in 2020, with sales dropping by 14 billion US dollars from 2019 to just 50 billion US dollars in 2020. See Statistica report

  • Online art sales doubled in 2020 over 2019 and this growth will continue with an estimated 5.8 billion US dollars this year in 2022. 

  • According to the Market Insider, the NFT market in 2021 was estimated at 41 billion US dollars, almost the size of the global art market. This is expected to grow exponentially in 2022.