TITLE: Is it High or Low?
DATE: 9/20/2004 08:11:00 PM
An interesting phenomenon in blogging… Many people I never intended to read this are happening across it and… well… enjoying it (Imagine that!). And, instead of commenting in the public comment area, they are shyly sending me personal emails with their comments and questions enclosed. One recent email I received asked me if I could look at the sender’s web site and determine if her work was ‘high end’ or ‘low end’. A day later I received a similar request.
So, by need and popular demand… here is the difference between high-end and low-end artwork.
Within your own studio you likely already have a high and low-end line of work. The majority of production craftspeople have low-end work that ranges between $25 and $65. Opposing this is high-end work that may be situated anywhere between $300 and $3,000. In obvious terms, the low-end is your lower price range and your high-end is your highest prices group of items.
If you are a painter, sculptor, or other ‘fine artist’ with limited-production, one-of-a-kind pieces, you also have a low and high-end.
This being said, your low-end can’t be insulting and your high-end has to be realistically priced.
An example of what I mean by this?
I once met a man near my hometown who was selling his prints for ridiculously high prices. They were color photographs and they were beautifully framed, but he was trying to sell his work to suburban Kansas art lovers! This was not a man who would have taken my ‘reflections’ on his pricing kindly but the fact remained, he saw little business at the show because his prices were arbitrary and out of the ball park. They weren’t even in the same league as most of the other photographers at the show!
Now, maybe he didn’t really want to part with these pieces and he intentionally priced them high, but left them in the booth to draw people in and catch attention. The way they really affected people though was quite the opposite. Because his high-end work was so outrageously priced, no one stood around to flip through his bins or look at the mini-prints and photo notecards. People came in to see the large prints in the back of the booth, looked at the prices, and promptly backed out (carefully) from the booth, cautious not to ‘break and buy’ anything.
Don’t get to stuck on extremes like this photographer… The majority of work in art OR craft booths sells in the median range.
Psychologically most consumers do not want to buy the cheapest thing. The masses are also often not bold enough to jump at large, costly pieces. Most people buy in the middle. And building the middle is where you will build your business.
Having solid ‘bookends’ of low and high end work will allow you to focus your energy on strengthening the accessible mid-range alternatives you offer to customers--the work they can afford, desire, and will end up buying.