Listen. All day, every day.
Danielle Glosser is the Founder and Principal of Client Raiser, a business dedicated to helping artists to increase their client volume and the visibility of their art. Since 2014, she has worked with nearly 100 artists across the country in support of their professional goals. Emerging and established artists alike begin with Client Raiser’s in-depth interview process, which results in a tangible assessment of their art practices and concrete next steps for advancing their careers.
Prior to launching Client Raiser, Danielle implemented social justice initiatives at The White House and in communities across the country that required her to manage complex projects with multiple constituents. Inspired by collecting art, Danielle was exposed to the unique career challenges that artists face and was moved to use her professional skills in strategic planning, project management, research, writing, and networking to support their aspirations.
Danielle is a 25-year resident of Washington, D.C. She has led workshops and partnered with arts organizations across the region, including Washington Project for the Arts, Gateway Arts District, Artomatic, District of Columbia Arts Center, Montgomery Arts Association, Capitol Hill Arts League, Washington Sculptors Group, Women’s Caucus for Art and the D.C. Commission on the Arts and Humanities. She was recently selected as a member of ArtTable, a leadership organization for women in the visual arts.
Where did the idea for your company come from?
I wanted to start my own business but had no clue what it would be. A friend told me to focus on what comes naturally. That was easy to identify – networking. While researching potential markets to share my skill set, our neighbor, a very established artist, asked my boys to serve as models for him. During this process, I realized that visual artists likely could benefit from my strategic planning, project management, and networking skills. I went down to ask my neighbor. Before I said a word about my idea, he asked me to help him with his art practice. Soon I had my first three artist-clients and I’ve never looked back. After four years, I have nearly 100 clients in almost a dozen states.
What does your typical day look like and how do you make it productive?
I start working at 5:30 a.m. I take 30 minutes to knock out my social media posts and then respond to emails. Getting my workout in next is a must to be productive throughout the day. The rest of my schedule is filled with meetings: pitching prospective clients, interviewing new clients, and meeting current clients, sometimes paying a visit to their studio. There are always art openings to attend as well.
How do you bring ideas to life?
I pursue every opportunity that I conceive and that comes my way. When I worked for the Clinton Administration, my boss described me as fearless. I take great pride in pursuing any and all prospects for my clients to increase the visibility and sales of their artwork. My latest pursuit involved proposing an idea to a budding art fair to host an advice booth for their participating artists. They loved the concept and offered me a complimentary space at the four-day event.
What’s one trend that excites you?
I love that artists are taking their careers into their own hands and creating exhibition spaces for themselves. STABLE Arts in Washington, D.C. is a perfect example. Three artists were concerned about the near total disappearance of studio and gallery space amid the city’s rapid development and took it upon themselves to create affordable studio space for artists and exhibition programming tied to local, national, and international audiences.
What is one habit of yours that makes you more productive as an entrepreneur?
I update my to-do list throughout the day. Life happens! Priorities change daily based on opportunities that present themselves and I never let one fall to the wayside.
What advice would you give your younger self?
Enjoy the process.
Tell us something that’s true that almost nobody agrees with you on.
Chocolate is a meal.
As an entrepreneur, what is the one thing you do over and over and recommend everyone else do?
Listen. All day, every day. I really tune in to what my potential clients and current clients are looking to accomplish with their art practices and help them take steps to realize their dreams. My focus is to help them achieve THEIR goals, not the ones that anyone else thinks that they should pursue.
What is one strategy that has helped you grow your business?
I outsource tasks that are time consuming or that I do not enjoy doing. For example, creating Mailchimp newsletters became too tedious for me so I hired a communications expert. Turned out that he was an artist and he ended up hiring me the same day!
What is one failure you had as an entrepreneur, and how did you overcome it?
An art consultant wanted to shake on a deal and I declined. I paid to have a legal agreement drafted that she passed on. I lost the deal and the contact as well. Ultimately, I did right by my clients by asking for clearly spelled out terms. Artists are taken advantage of far too often and I try not to let that happen on my watch.
What is one business idea that you’re willing to give away to our readers?
GRANDMA ON WHEELS! I have always thought about starting a company that hires retired folks to take kids around to their after-school activities.
What is the best $100 you recently spent? What and why?
I bought one of my kids an Amazon Echo so he could choose what music to play in his room. Now, he uses it as an alarm clock as well. Win – win!
What is one piece of software or a web service that helps you be productive? How do you use it?
GoDaddy everything! I love their bookkeeping system. Especially, how it links to my PayPal and bank account.
What is the one book that you recommend our community should read and why?
The Atlas! It’s my favorite book. The one I turn to is Rand McNally’s Universal World Atlas. It has these fascinating maps and I love to flip through and learn about unknown territories. It’s a great reminder of the earth’s vastness and to not take our #firstworldproblems so seriously.
What is your favorite quote?
“Fair is foul, and foul is fair.” – Shakespeare
• Be fearless! Pursue every opportunity. Never let one fall to the wayside.
• Listen! Help your clients achieve THEIR goals, not yours or someone else’s.
• Outsource time consuming tasks – especially those that you do not enjoy.
• Don’t shake on a deal when it puts your clients at risk. Get it in writing.
Facebook: Client Raiser
LinkedIn: Danielle Glosser
Mario Schulzke is the Founder of ideamensch, which he started a decade ago to learn from entrepreneurs and give them a platform for their ideas.