Saturday, November 8, 2008

Artist: How to value your work

A pieces value depends on the potential patron's willingness to purchase at the price offered. The price should not change dependent on your cost. Its value is NOT attached to the cost of production. Any article offered into a market is subject to a market force called "pricing tolerance". Price tolerance is actually more art then science. Some articles sell better, much better because of another market force called "perceived value". This is why a purse with the right label can be priced at $1000 while an extremely similar article can't be sold at $100. All articles in the market are commodities. The value of a commodity is based on supply and demand. If you sell corn, the value of corn is based on how badly the market demands it and how much supply is available.

Now let's try to nutshell this:
Your art is not widely available, which is good if this article is in demand. You then must move to price tolerance which is where percieved value rears its confusing head. If you under price your work, people will assume it's not worth much and then choose not to buy. The best way to achieve another market force called "price equilibrium" is to enter the market place and go on a price discovery mission. A mission, isn't this getting exciting? Simply put, you shop the market, find similar works and price your stuff competitively.

Here is where the nut takes root:
So now, with out caring about price of production, you have gone on your price discovery mission and you now know how the market values your work (pricing tolerance). From this you have now understood the perceived value of your work and you have your price point discovered of your work. Now with this you take a look at your cost of production. Now you have your profit margin. then you ask; "is this enough for this to be a worthwhile proposition?".

Now you have a formula, my work is worth xxx per square inch, and you sell (hopefully) consistently at this price.

Probably more info then you need, but I did my best.

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