Radim Malinic

How to Sell Your Creativity and Build a Creative Business

January 16, 2024
Creative Stories
Creative Business

Ok- so you have have always been creative. You want this to be your life- this idea you have; full of passion, good intentions, and spirit, is how you want to spend all of your days. You are a maker of things. You are a Creative.

One small problem.

How do you make money?

Radim Malinic, a London-based design and publishing figure, has recently released two new books, "Creativity For Sale" and "Mindful Creative." Having built and scaled a Creative Agency and collaborating with multiple agencies throughout his 20+ year career, Radim has been through the highest highs and the lowest lows of the creative serivice industry

Both books, not only beautiful inside and out, are designed to inspire and empower fellow creatives, offering strategies for building and amplifying brands, as well as providing actionable tools for growth and how to build a positive and healthy mindsets around your creative career.

Resources like these books- purpose-built for someone going through the struggles of creatives and trying to build their own career- are veritable gold, and were built with the motivation of helping creatives in mind. With so many stories of success- but also vulnerability and struggle, the books provide the foundation of the knowledge that builds a successful creative career.

The book “Creativity for Sale”- divided into an album-style table of contents (Intentional, of course, from the electric bassist in death metal bands of his past life) consists of the following chapters:

  1. Creativity for Sale
  2. Power of One
  3. Define
  4. Build
  5. Amplify
  6. Money
  7. Clients
  8. Tools
  9. Growth

All are essential for the growth of the creative entrepreneur- starting with...

Creativity for Sale

The first step to accomplishing a successful creative career is knowing and truly believing that it is possible. This section helps you clarify and define your intentions for what you want your version of creativity to be.

Power of One

"The fuel is your drive… it’s the reason why I jumped in those big blue waves on my surfboard without being equipped with any knowledge of how you do it…. I was just excited.”

Brace yourself… the journey ahead will not be easy. Radim offers us the analogy of having a new surfboard and being ready to hit the waves. You have this “childlike” joy and excitement towards starting a new creative pursuit- so you head to the beach, the sand warm and the air in your face, ready to hit the waves…

and you get crushed. The waves surprise you- and guess what? They don’t stop! Relentless and unforgiving, the tide of revisions, finances, and mental struggles pound on you until you splash to shore, tail between legs.

This section may not calm the tide or improve your surfing skills- but it will teach you how to stay afloat.

Define

Not only is it important to know what you’re getting into with creative service, but also know what you’re optimizing for. It contains plenty of prompts and questions to help piece together a business strategy and get us going down the right path, set the right expectations, and determine what your own version of success actually looks like.

Build

"You definitely can't just be good at everything, and you also can’t be ‘so-so’ at everything- you have to be really good at something and then you just build your little skills on top."

Now that we know our direction, Radim helps us get a little more tactical by covering specific actions to help get off the ground. These include personal things like a mission statement and brand identity, to concrete actions such as strategy and marketing. (He even includes some wardrobe advice for creatives as well. You’re not going to want to skip this foundational piece of the creative puzzle.

Amplify

This section is all about building relationships- whether with your team, clients, or collaborators. This is so, so, important- because before you can elaborate to others just what it is you do and how you can solve their problems, you aren’t actually in business yet.

Money

Ah yes. Money. The very thing that complicates a the successful creative career, and yet the reason we started a creative business in the first place. Money is important because it allows us to do more of what we love creatively. However- it can also be a major pain in the ass. The money chapter shows us how to spend less time chasing invoices, making quotes, and navigating budget negotiations and more time creating.

Clients

A full overview of the client process- and a guide to interpersonal communication that keeps your clients happy and you in business. There are many nuances to the process of managing client relationships- as there are with anything that involves money- but Radim has a lot of practical knowledge over his career that applies here and shares. These even specific scripts and conversational approaches that you can try right away.

Tools

Creative tools and software can be overwhelming, but not anymore. Now that we know each part of our business that needs software or hardware, all we need is a list to try in each area and iterate until we find one that works best. Radim takes us through the process from start to finish- listing the tools that fit into each piece of the puzzle, suitable for any budget.

Tools should be exciting to use, not overwhelming. This chapter will help you find the tools that work best for you and your creative business. Even if you’re listening on audio- the list is clear, actionable, and clear.

Grow

This is it! We almost know how to swim. Here we finish with a practical guide on how to make the most of everything we have learned thus far- learning the importance of tracking progress, growing a team, and managing problems. This chapter helps clarify the process and rounds everything in a satisfying, succinct way that doesn’t leave us hanging.

Final Creative Notes

"If you want to be a rockstar… be a rockstar. Do it. You can't just sort of be half-hearted about it all and hope for the best… No. if you want to do it… do it."

If you’re anything like me, you are an avid reader and curator of knowledge. “Creativity For Sale” is perfect not just for those getting started, but those looking for clarity on their processes and trying to become more efficient in their own business.

As I mention in the Creative’s Journal Podcast Interview with Radim, I can see myself reading this book every year as a sort of reflection and reminder as to why I do what I do. The simple reassurance that comes from knowing that others have come before you, and have gone through the fire, and have come out unscathed, happy, and healthy, is blessed reassurance in itself.

I encourage anyone who is creative to read this book- and not just read it, but study it. Learn the lessons from a creative professional and apply them to your own creative business. Your creativity can make you money. After reading this, you have everything you need to stay afloat.

Now… time to hit the waves.

WATCH THE FULL video.

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