Here’s one tip for building an audience: No one cares about you.

Well, okay, your friends do and your family does, but if you’re trying to scrape together an audience from the vast online world of strangers, no one cares about you.

At least not yet.

The ugly truth is people want more of what they already like, but in an unexpected way. They want a mashup, or a new twist, or a familiar thing in a style they didn’t expect.

a tip for building an auience

The first connection with your potential audience member is usually over some common ground. Then, once they’re familiar with you they’ll move on to other things.

Building an audience for you own work has to start with the familiar.
No one really cares if this is a good drawing. They don’t know who she is.

Once you’ve spent some time building up an audience, they might even care what you had for lunch, or that you’re on your 2nd workout of the day.

Maybe.

So does that mean you have to do nothing but fan art?

No, but fan art is the visual equivalent of a band doing a cover song. Especially at the beginning of a career, you need to connect with people by giving them what they know. Then you can wow them with your 10-minute jam session, heavy metal version of your original song “Vanilla Bean Bombing Run.”

It’s a slow process for most of us. But you might be one of the lucky ones and knock that home run out of the park from the get-go.

But probably not.

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