In February, Eli Waduba made a pencil painting of the comedian, Kelvin Hart. He posted it on Twitter, tagged Hart and some other Twitter influencers and the painting went viral, catching the attention of Kelvin Hart, and there was a purchase deal.
I see it and I want to purchase it…I also want to support you and your amazing talent by giving you a fee to do a pencil drawing of 3 of my celebrity friends that I can gift it to. DM your info and let’s get to work! https://t.co/ImOYa0UNlL
— Kevin Hart (@KevinHart4real) February 27, 2019
In October, Osuolale Farouq proposed a new logo he designed for Innoson Motors and tagged the firm on Twitter. The new design caught the attention of the management and a deal was struck.
Barely two months after, another Nigerian youngster has used the same method to get the attention of the U.S President, Donald Trump. He made an artistic portrait of Trump and tagged him, and Trump responded in the most encouraging way.
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) December 2, 2019
There may not have been a deal struck this time but there is a lesson. Just like Farouq and Waduba demonstrated, the key to being spotted lies on three things: 1. being good at what you do 2. doing a pro-bono job 3. taking advantage of the internet.
Being good at what you do
Practice is the secret of being good at what you do. Performance is a reflection of talent and skill, that means, you can improve on just about any task with a lot of practice. The quest to get better pushes one to learn more about what he is doing. And in order to maximize the quality of your knowledge, you have to develop the ability to explain things back to yourself.
Be open to entertain new ideas. Openness enables you to try new things and do something differently from how it is usually done. It reflects how much you are motivated to consider new ideas, concepts, and experiences. The most creative people are typically very open people. A new set of habits here and there create opportunity for improvement.
Asking questions has been a tested way of learning. Sometimes, people allow pride to get in the way and they deny themselves the opportunity to learn something new just because they feel it will belittle them to ask questions about things they don’t really know. It is a hurdle that may eventually result in failure.
Relying on one’s memory is also another way to improve skills. But sometimes, extracting the needed information from your memory becomes difficult. How then do you go about that? All you have to do is to ask your memory the question, and it will pull something up. Though it may not be the exact information you’re looking for, it will be just about it.
The most creative people don’t settle on a single way to think about a problem. Instead, they keep finding new descriptions to the problem while allowing their memory to explore more information to solve it.
When you fail, you can start afresh to practice the task, concentrating on the areas of your failure instead repeating the parts you have successfully executed. Learn one thing at a time; do not try to learn it all at once.
Getting a coach, a mentor is another way to improve your abilities. A coach can provide you with the criticism and feedback that you need to do things better the next time. Having a mentor will steer you in the right direction, help you to figure out exactly where you need to improve on and set the right goals.
Providing pro-bono services
The efforts you put together to get on top of your game usually comes at a high cost. Money spent on courses, sleepless nights and other sacrifices you must have made to improve yourself. Often, the intention of many will be to get a sort of compensation through high paying offers as soon as they are qualified.
But remember, you are not the only one who does what you do, and are very good at it. So personal development isn’t all you need to get the big gig. The competitive markets create unequal opportunity that you will have to go looking for clients instead of clients looking for you.
In that case, starting with free services becomes an option that may make the difference. Look for companies, people in your field of expertise and create what they need in a way that it has not been done before. It was a technique employed by Farouq and Waduba, and it worked out good.
Take advantage of the internet
Pushing your work to the notice of your target is a challenge that the internet can help with. Farouq got the attention of Innoson by merely tagging their twitter handle and asking others to retweet until they notice him. And so Donald Trump and Kelvin Hart’s attention was called to the art depicting them.
So social media offers you the opportunity to get in touch with people that it is quite impractical for you to reach offline: You create, you upload, you tag them and beg other users to help you push it to a viral point, although it doesn’t always have to be.
There is a possibility that your attempt may be ignored by and then discouragement comes in, considering the amount of time resources and creativity that have gone into the work. So before you put out any work, entertain the possibility of rejection and weigh other options in line with that assumption. Do not let it stop you from doing more work and reaching out to others, it may take only one successful pitch to turn your story around.