Continuing a look at how to get yourself accepted as a seller in a 3D marketplace, let’s look at how decision makers can be convinced to buy or market your model. I’m writing from my own perspective as a brokered artist with DAZ 3D, but while the process may not be identical elsewhere, I should think the general advice would apply to other 3D marketplaces too.
OK, well let me ask you a question, and I’m assuming here you have actually bought 3D products. (Not true of everyone, but I think being a customer as well as a seller can only be of benefit to you.) The question is: what makes you buy a product?
The art, that’s what. The promotional renders. OK, you might go on to read the blurb and admire all those morphs or features, or get infected by the enthusiasm of others in the forums. But it starts with the promo art.
The same is true of the decision-makers who decide whether your product will make their store look good. In fact, if you are not yet on their books, the only way you can impress them is with your visual presentation of your product. In other words, your renders. If you want to get into the store, focus on making the best art you can.
I’m not saying the decision-making team can’t see potential in an early render of a not-quite-finished product. They definitely can. However, they know their customers will buy based on the visuals. Great artwork can convince an on the fence buyer to spend, but poor artwork will make even the best product hard to sell. You make it much easier for them to say yes to your product if you give them those attention-grabbing visuals right off the bat.
If you began as an artist and moved on to creating your own content, you’ve no worries. You’ve probably noticed that some of the DAZ 3D PA’s are amazing artists, and in an otherwise equal marketplace you can bet they will be getting the sales. We’re all different, of course, and some of us feel less confident on the presentation side of things than about other parts of the process. It has given me some worries, I admit, but if you commit to doing the best you can it doesn’t have to be a barrier.
Promo art is like any skill you want to master. Study the work of those who impress you. Devote extra time to working on it. Aim to get better all the time. If you are brave enough, you’ll find it rewarding to get constructive feedback to find out if it’s your lighting that’s letting you down or if perhaps you need your image to be more dynamic.
While I did say that the staff can see potential, I think it’s safe to say they are generally looking for a finished product. Or at least one that looks finished, even if you have a few things still to do. Once you are on the inside, you’ll only be pitching finished products to them. The one advantage you’ll have if you are still trying to break in is that you don’t need to send files, just renders. It’s a longer process from pitch to store for a first-time seller, but gives you more time to tidy things up.
Don’t go overboard on the render size or quantity. There are guidelines on the marketplace’s site (I collected some links to some of the leading 3D stores’ submission guidelines a while back). I recommend you stick to them. You can be sure they will ask if they want to see more, or larger, images.
A final word. I know it’s a big ask to submit renders only when the product is finished, or as near as. If the answer is no, that could mean weeks of work down the drain. It can be a tough business. That’s why it’s important do the best job you can on your submission renders. They speak for your product more than anything else you can say or do. If they are good enough, you won’t even need to redo them when your product zooms past the nodding and smiling review team and makes its happy way to QA.