AAD511 Communications Assessment 6 – Event Promotion

Nathan Forbes is a multimedia artist based in Wellington, New Zealand. He is currently studying his Bachelor of Arts at Victoria University of Wellington. I have had the privilege of studying and working with him closely, and my project is about promoting his work as an artist and designer.​

Nathan Forbes, Claude, digital art, 2019

Goals: to promote Nathan to the New Zealand community as an artist and designer. ​

Objectives: ​

  • To host an exhibition of Nathan’s work at a Nelson art gallery, and to promote it via the following platforms:​
  1. Facebook​
  2. Twitter​
  3. Instagram​
  4. Print advertising (newspaper, flyers and posters)​
  5. Email ​

I will be using a range of media for event promotion in order to reach a large and diverse group of people. This is to maximize the potential attendance at the exhibition. 

The exhibition’s working title is “We Are All Angels”, after Nathan’s painting of the same name. ​


The initial task to promote Nathan and the event will be to create a Facebook page about his art and design work. With regular posting and self-promotion, engagement will increase and a small audience of interested people will like and follow the page. Ergo, when information about an exhibition of Nathan’s work is posted, these people are likely to be interested in the event and therefore attend.  ​

When setting up an event on Facebook, it could be hosted either by Nathan alone, the gallery space alone, or both together. By teaming up with the gallery in order to promote the exhibition, both fans of the gallery (and art in general) as well as people who are specifically interested in Nathan’s work are exposed to the promotional material. For example, Atelier Gallery in Nelson regularly posts about their exhibitions and uses Facebook to invite people to exhibitions, closings, openings and floor talks.​ This strategy can be employed throughout any platform the gallery or artist use. ​

Here is an example of an event hosted by Atelier Gallery on Facebook.
Here is a concept for the Facebook event I could create for this exhibition.


Twitter has 145 million active daily users. This is a massive active audience for an artist/designer to tap into. Not only can the artist post their work, they can interact with their audience via replies, direct messages, and polls. ​The second task to promote the event would be to create a Twitter page for Nathan’s art and design work. This account can post regularly as on Facebook, creating a dialogue with interested viewers, who are invested in events such as an exhibition of Nathan’s work. ​

Yuyi is an artist and designer with a large following on Twitter. 
Here is a concept of a Twitter profile for Nathan.

Instagram is a popular social media platform for artists as its focus is images. Additionally, it has a large amount of active users, most of whom are under 34. ​This makes it a natural platform for young artists to promote their work. ​Nathan has created a steady Instagram following, an audience who would engage with an event he promotes such as an exhibition of his work. ​

​A task to promote this event would be to use Instagram posts to promote the exhibition. These posts would be displayed to both people following the account, and people in the Nelson/Tasman area. Within Instagram’s Ad Manager, you can Select your objective, target audience and advertisement format.​ This way, you can refine the demographics your advertisements are shown to via location, age, gender, language, and interests.  ​

Atelier Studio | Gallery on Instagram. They have photographs of work on display as well as exhibition information.
Nathan Forbes on Instagram – note the way colour palettes and themes are carried throughout pieces to make the feed cohesive.
Here is an Instagram post promoting the exhibition. I have chosen to promote it to people in the Nelson and Wellington regions, youth (users aged 18-25), and people interested in Arts and Design. Since Instagram’s platform is based around visuals, an effective advertising campaign will use clear and concise imagery to attract the viewer’s attention. The text in the top right-hand corner says “sponsored”, which is how it will appear on the Instagram feeds of those targeted. 


According to Stuff’s Audience Finder, The Nelson Leader reaches 36,000 people in the Nelson/Marlborough region per print, and the Nelson Mail reaches 30,000 people within the region, with 19,000 daily readers.  Additionally, 51% of readers have decided where to buy something as a result of their community newspaper.​

​Therefore, an advertising campaign within these newspapers would reach an average of approximately 33,000 people per print run. ​Even if only 10% of the people who read the advertisement in such a paper end up attending an event advertised, that’s still a whopping 3,300 people. ​

​Additionally, print media remains popular with the older population, who may not communicate digitally. Advertising in this way allows us to promote the event to a larger audience who otherwise might never hear of it. ​​My plan to promote this event involves creating graphics to use in both print and social media to promote an exhibition of Nathan’s work. ​

Here is my rendition of what a print advertisement for the event would look like. It uses Nathan’s artwork We Are All Angels as the cover image to draw the viewer’s eye to the event information. 


I have created a poster and flyers to promote the event. The posters can be put up in public spaces via PHANTOM BILLSTICKERS, as well as being distributed on community noticeboards such as those at clubs, libraries and schools. ​

“Advertising with Posters & Flyers in public places nationwide mean you get your message in front of consumers when they are most receptive to it.”  ​

Jim Wilson, Founding Director of Phantom Billstickers
Here is a graphic I have made for the event – posters on A4 size and flyers at A6 size.


Collaborating with third parties in order to get exposure is a step that must be taken in order to properly promote this event. Many local galleries, in addition to having their own presence on social media, have online newsletters and mailing lists that can be utilised for advertising events such as Nathan’s exhibition. ​

As part of promoting this event, I would like to reach out to the following: ​


They have a website where they advertise exhibitions as well as having a mailing list where they send out a newsletter monthly.​​


Also have a well laid out website and a mailing list. ​


This newsletter is published with the help of Nelson City Council. Free copies are distributed to local businesses, cafes, and the library. ​


The Arts Council Nelson “continually looks for opportunities to enrich and promote the regions’ creative happenings and the fruits of our creative community.” Their promotional capablity is not only via social media, but also print and email copies of the Monthly Arts Calender.


​​I have chosen to use a wide variety of marketing strategies and platforms in order to reach a larger, engaged audience. The more people who actively receive the message about the event, the more people attend it. Ergo, to promote the event and the work for sale there is important for the artist and his team. It gives him exposure as well as presenting the opportunity to sell work and interact with his audience. ​

​If they are engaged by the artist and his work, they are more likely to consider buying a piece or commissioning him in the future. This ensures his continued livelihood and financial stability. ​


I have chosen to create and promote this event as it is directly relevant to my career goal – to create pieces that can be exhibited and sold in order to sustain both my artistic practice and financial stability. I have enjoyed learning about event promotion as it is a task I will likely have to do earnestly in the future. ​​

Creating promotional materials and learning to market my art to an engaged audience who have the means to support my work is important for commercial success in the future. 

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