So I've gotten a number of emails asking me "how far is too far?" when it comes to self-promotion. Here are a few examples of good and bad behavior.
Sending out email blasts about updates, events, new work, etc.
Sending them every day.
You absolutely do not want to be known as a pest. It's good to get excited, it's good to update people with news, just not every day. This isn't twitter. We don't need your status updates 24 hours a day, especially when we have to weed through emails on a daily basis. If someone wants to know what you are up to badly enough they will ask.
Adding a personal touch to your email by researching the magazine, publishing house, or gallery.
Asking the art director, editor, or curator how their kids are by name when you've never met them.
It's great to add personal touches, witty emails are usually well received, but please do not turn stalker on people you want to work with or are working with. How do you know if you've gone to far? If you have to ask yourself that question the answer is: You've gone too far.
Writing about those who inspire you or artist you've met.
Badmouthing other artists on your blog.
It's fine to have an opinion but writing negatively about someone reflects poorly on you, not them. And frankly no one wants to hear about how you don't like so and so. Most people want a positive upbeat person they know will deliver. Not a negative, whiny, bitch. Yeah, I said it.
Putting a personal touch into your blog.
Talking about your breakup, posting pictures of your ex with scribbles over his eyes and stab marks over his heart.
Video of you working. pictures of work in progress, the story behind the piece, and a little insight into your everyday world are great. It makes the reader feel connected to you and your work. You can talk about your personal life as long as it pertains to what you are doing. As the "Urban Gypsy" who got into art,publishing, modeling, and the metaphysical I posted a blog about my family history which includes all of these and lead back to why I'm the "Urban Gypsy" and how I was created. Essentially it was my brand history. If you feel the need to get personal on the internet create a blog under a different name or get a livejournal account. They have private settings so the public does not have to see your business and you can still vent.
Be consistant with your portfolio.
Every image has a completely different style.
Art directors want to see that you can give them what they are asking for with no surprises. If you have a portfolio with ten different images and no consistant style; how will they know what will be delivered. They will not take that chance until they know that you can give exactly what you are selling.
Stay fresh and relevent.
Posting work from three years ago when you had tried acrylics for the first time.
Updated fresh work is key to making it. Art directors and curators want to see that you are constantly working and evolving, not holding onto a piece that you thought would be your big money maker. You can post older work, just be sure that it is relevent to what you are doing and that you are always creating new fresh pieces.
I hope this helps and if you have any other questions, please feel free to email me.
You can check out the other "How To" blogs here.