Sculptor and artist Brian Baity has been drawing since he could hold a pencil… He’s been designing art for 14 years, and five years ago he left the corporate world to become a full time artist. From day one, Brian started leveraging a relationship marketing strategy to grow his new business and the results have been nothing short of incredible!
Kody Bateman: Hey everybody. This is Kody B coming to you live from Salt Lake City, Utah. Welcome to this week’s version of our Relationship Marketing Weekly show.
Very excited for the guest that we have on our show today. His name is Brian Baity. He’s with Brian Baity Studios out of Salt Lake City, Utah. Brian, welcome to our call today.
Brian Baity: Thank you Kody. It’s a pleasure to be here.
Kody: It looks like you’re in your home studio, right?
Kody: A good-looking couch you’re sitting on there, enjoying a nice, sunny afternoon there in your home.
Kody: So Brian comes from the art studio world. I’m really excited about this because I’ve never interviewed – I’ve never interviewed anybody from your industry before. So this is going to be kind of cool, very educational for all of us. Brian, one of the first things that we always like to do is just kind of give you a – you know, for 60 seconds or so, just have you briefly describe what your – what your business is, how you conduct business, how you generate revenue. Can you just kind of give us a broad stroke of your studio?
Brian: Sure. Carving is my main industry. I carve eggshells, gourds, wood, also jewelry. I’m in jewelry and photography. So that’s the gist of it and then most of my marketing is done with SendOutCards. About probably 85 or 90 percent of my marketing is done through relationships.
Kody: So speaking of carvings, this was a gift that I received from you.
Kody: Incredible detail, just very, very cool stuff. Really neat and like you said, most of your – the way you market your product is with SendOutCards or the relationship marketing system. We will kind of get to that here in a second.
You have a great love of art and it’s fun to listen to you talk about art. Before the show started, you told us a bit about Costco and different things. I love when people have passion for something and now I can learn from that passion. We will probably share some of your passion here on this show today.
So you’re an artist. You’re passionate about it. There are a couple of things I want to talk about. You introduced me to a new word today. You said something about – with the card system, the greeting card system, you create provenance.
Kody: You help artists, other artists to create provenance. Now most people listening know – what we know right now is that’s a gorgeous word. I don’t know exactly what it means. So can you share with us what you mean by creating provenance?
Brian: I would love to. So provenance is the story behind the artist and the work that the artist creates. The example we gave is Picasso. People pay lots and lots of money for those creations that he makes. But indeed, we all know people who paint as well or better sometimes than Picasso did, especially in the styles that we find attractive. I, for one, don’t find his work overly attractive. So what people pay those tens of millions of dollars for is not the oil on the canvass. They’re paying for the Picasso in the corner because he contributed much to the art world and he’s world famous. So that’s the provenance is what he did to become Picasso.
Kody: So you actually use cards to tell the story, to create that provenance. Do you get – I think you got something you could share with us. Just give us a –
Brian: I do. So this is the front of one card that I used to announce at our show overseas. I’m not going to open it up. It’s a three-fold card. It can open real quickly. But you can’t read it. So it’s the story of the artists that are involved and I actually invited two other artists to be part of the show, so that I could help them build their own provenance and that’s their – both of their first experience in showing art overseas.
Kody: That’s interesting. I’m not – I would like to get more into art. I’m really not. I’m certainly a beginner or novice, if you will. But that is certainly the way I would like to be invited to go to a show because if you know me, I’m big on stories. I love stories about everything.
So if I could learn the story behind the piece, before I go to see it, now it has relevance for me or maybe the word is provenance.
Kody: Yeah. So that’s super cool and so you in a very unique way, you use our relationship marketing system to tell the story, to get the story out there.
Kody: You do a lot with invitations. You just showed us one. But you have several different announcements you’ve done. Share some of that.
Brian: I would love to do that as well. So I’m trying to get the glare off, right? This is announcement one of two I can show you. Here’s the second one. So I have awards from Utah, Best of the State, for my contributions to art in Utah and obviously as an artist, that would be a significant thing to do. You know, contribute at a state level.
So I actually got to go with me one year to the gala where they presented the awards and so when I make the announcement about the art and about the show, this is the inside of one of them. I also talk a little bit more about what’s going on with upcoming exhibitions and invitations – invite people to attend them as well.
So that’s how I had the provenance. So it looks like – it’s not just hey, it’s me being an artist and I love me. It’s more about the people who support me and I’m inviting them to be part of my artwork.
Kody: So you do a lot of announcements. You have a list of people that you send invitations to.
Kody: The invitations. What would be the average size of a list, the average list size that you would send out, like an invitation to go to one of these events?
Brian: OK. So obviously now, my patrons are in Utah. I send invitations to all of them again to add the provenance. But that shows the validity of my art. So I send between 300 and 500 cards a couple of times a year.
Kody: Wow, that’s great. So you have a system here at SendOutCards where you’re able to do that. You have group lists and you’re able to send those out, create – I’m still saying the wrong word, a little bit wrong. But –
Kody: Provenance. I love that! I absolutely love that. I would like to figure out how to put that into my speeches because that’s what marketing is. See, this is what’s interesting. This is a relationship marketing show. People get on here to learn how they can better their relationships and better their marketing tactics, so that they can get better return on investment, better results on their business.
But that whole provenance thing is powerful because that’s what marketing is. Marketing is about telling a story and it’s very reflective in the art world because there is no value to the paint on the canvass until you know the story. If there’s a story, then there’s value. Isn’t that the same in any business?
Brian: Yes, definitely.
Kody: The value will tell you all the story.
Kody: So that’s really powerful stuff. So you do a lot of other things. One of the things I noticed – you showed me an example before. With the service that you use, you have the ability to use the back of the card and you can – you can create your own branding on the back of the card and I love the type of branding that you create on the back of the card because you don’t make it about you. You make it about the people who have contributed to you. Can you share that with us? That was really cool.
Brian: Yeah. I will read it and then I will just fold it up real quick, so people can see it. So at the very top, it reads, “For their contributions to my artistic success, I wish to express my profound gratitude.” Very simple. So that’s what it says across the top and then all these people are significant sponsors or patrons or both. You know, some people collect as well as like support my overseas efforts through art. Then there’s the Best of State award, which kind of again adds the provenance.
Brian: But these people know that they’re significant. Some of them are businesses. So I’m actually supporting business owners with my thank-you.
Kody: Yeah, that’s super cool. Now, can you just share with us what that – so that’s an example of how you pay recognition to others who have contributed to you, which is incredible. What we teach here is what you send out in life goes back to you. What you appreciate appreciates. Brian, you’re a master of appreciating other people, so that’s super cool. Can you just share with us what was that particular card? I believe that was an announcement of some kind. Can you share that with us?
Brian: Yes. It’s an announcement for an eighth city photography exhibition. So the quick version, me and a friend who – he’s a Bulgarian photo journalist. I created it and he and I worked in conjunction with each other. Each of us contributed 20 photographs of Bulgaria. He’s a native and a photo journalist. But he thinks like a photo journalist more than artist, right? I’m an artist and a visitor. So I contributed 20 shots. He contributed 20 shots. We made a 40-photograph exhibition all about Bulgaria.
Kody: Oh, that is so cool. Where is it located? Where is that at?
Brian: Well, it was two months in the Covey Center for the Arts in Provo, just wrapping up at the Utah Cultural Celebration Center, just down the road from SendOutCards.
Kody: OK, excellent. So when you send that invitation, how many people were on that list? Just out of curiosity.
Brian: This one probably 700.
Kody: So 700 people were able to get the invitation to the exhibit and they were exposed to all these people that you appreciated in your life. Powerful. I mean that is just so incredible and I’m sure those people appreciate so much that recognition and it gives them exposure. You know, it gives them exposure to other people as well. Everybody at the end of the day is seeking to build their network of people and so you help them to do that.
Kody: I tell you, this is fascinating. Like this is a very unique show today. A lot of unique examples of how to use our system today, which I really appreciate Brian. We got to get this out there. Those of you who are listening in, make sure that you share this with people and get people to come to this because this is valuable, valuable information, especially for anybody who’s in the art industry, who wants – I mean this – the art business I got to believe is not the easiest business to market, is it?
I mean it’s a – that’s a tough industry.
Brian: You definitely bring up a good point because as – generally speaking, artists are not good at marketing. They want to create in their little cell and then kind of hurl it over the wall and let somebody else market it. Unless you’re famous, no one is willing to dedicate the time and effort to market you.
Brian: So what I really am passionate about with your system is to teach all those non-marketing artists how to market in an hour a week.
Brian: You know, send a few cards. Thank a few clients. When you made the ability to take photographs and put that on the front of a card, you – you never knew this. But you changed my whole marketing plan because now let’s say you – use your statue as an example.
I could take a photo of you, if you bought that piece. I could take a photo of you on my phone. Click, right? Here’s your wooden piece.
Brian: Send you a thank you with “Kody Bateman and his statue” on the front. On the inside, I could write a little story about what you have and why and then on the third page, again I thank you for your – supporting the arts and then I give credit to everybody who helped me.
Kody: Yeah, go ahead. Sorry.
Brian: OK. So now, you would never throw that card away.
Brian: There’s a story if you want to hear it. Well, we talked a little bit about it. But – about how that exact thing has led to referrals that have led to referrals that have led to referrals.
Kody: Well, that’s the point I was going to make is that – you know, I listened to what you just said. I receive that card with me on the front showing this and then you tell the story of it from the inside. I see your contributors on the back.
I just know that I – like you got me. I mean it. Hook, line and sinker, I will promote you until the end of the world. You know, I – oh, you got to me Brian Baity, man. This guy, oh my goodness! Because that’s how impactful that kind of a touch is. I mean it’s just incredible.
Brian: Can I relate that story though? It’s really – I think it’s important to see how people can use this.
Brian: Do I have a minute to tell you?
Kody: Go ahead. You bet.
Brian: You see, I have a woman in California who found me through the internet before I had SendOutCards or anything. She loved my work. She ordered a piece. I shipped it out to her, just a carved gourd, 86 inches in diameter, right? She put it on her mantel. She loved it. She told me this story. This is how I know it. So again, before SendOutCards, I just mailed it off and that was pretty much the end of it. Thank you for your – you know, thank you so much through email and that was the end of it.
So she had a Christmas party. One of her guests said, “Hey, what’s that on the mantel?” and she said, “Oh, it’s a gourd. It’s carved by some guy in Utah.” I’m sure the conversation went like, “It’s cool.” Maybe they took it down and looked at it real quick, put it back on, up and on to the party.
So move forward like four year. Now I’ve found SendOutCards and I took a photo of a piece. I take photos of all my work before I mail them off. So I put that on the front. I couldn’t put her photo but it was still a photo of the piece. Again, on the inside of the card, a little bit about it, a little bit about why and sent it off to her.
Well, she took that card and put it behind the gourd on the mantel.
Brian: In the party, someone says to her – another guest. Hey, what’s that on the mantel? It’s a carved gourd. This guy in Utah does [0:14:53] [Inaudible]. Here, check this out. Gets the card out, hands it to her, reads the little thing. It’s my contact information off the back and calls me. I need what she has.
Kody: Wow. See, that is a great story.
Brian: From that relationship, now she’s referring and then now those people are referring.
Kody: That is fantastic. Wow. What a great story and I know you got a lot of stories like that because you’re in the habit of doing these things every day. Well, Brian, I’ve heard a lot about you. I’ve met you several times. I would love to get to meet you and get to know you much better. What a fascinating gentleman you are and I appreciate you sharing your contribution to the show today. Any final words of wisdom you would like to share with our listeners before we head off?
Brian: Stay in touch. Relationship, that’s all that makes a success, literally. I mean I really don’t know how to put it another way. When I open the Bulgaria art shows, the photography art shows, because I’m continually sending cards to Bulgarian venues that I’ve shown in the past, continue to keep them in touch of what’s going on, right?
So I proposed, “Hey, I got this photo exhibition.” I send invitations to every place of every show. Six of them said, “Oh, yes, please. Let’s take your show.” I didn’t even – I mean usually artists have to pay. They waive the fees. Like when can you come?
Kody: Excellent, excellent.
Brian: It’s all about relationships.
Kody: It sure is. Well Brian Baity, thank you very much for being on the show today. All of you listening in, if you’ve got people that want to know or you want to know how Brian does all this stuff, you can certainly get with the person who shared this show with you today and I’m sure they can help you out. Thank you everybody. We will see you next week on another wonderful version of Relationship Marketing Weekly. Take care now.
Brian: Thank you, Kody B.