Some points to consider when having an interview with a prospective gallery/dealer:
1. Make a strong case for the marketability of your art—know why it will be bought (and your reasons should be compatible with the taste of the gallery’s clients or the mandate of the gallery). Be able to identify uniqueness in your work and have several points as to how you will produce sales (share information about your mailing list, past buyers, unique advertising opportunities you can access, you “personal markets” such as clubs you belong to, alumni organizations, church, etc.).
2. If there are sales hooks in your body of work, share them with your dealer. The more marketing ideas you have the better. Otherwise, your dealer may see markets for your work when reviewing your portfolio or as a result of seeing past exhibitions if you don’t have specific marketing ideas. (If, for example, you paint florals, have a list of botanical target buyers to offer as part of your contribution to sales.)
3. Be prepared to offer the dealer the names of references—people who have invested in you and love your work, people with whom you have worked, art teachers who have respect and faith in you.
4. If you are an articulate person, and you feel comfortable-to-confident talking to prospective buyers, offer the dealer those services. (Be careful; not all of you who love to talk have effective communication skills.)
5. Have considerable inventory available when you are seeking representation, and speak to an ability to produce enough inventory to satisfy the dealer over time. (Don’t make enthusiastic but unrealistic promises!)
6. Have (and state) a desire to stick with the dealer for the long term. In seeking a dealer you are asking someone to invest in you. They need to see a return on that investment that can often only be achieved over time.
7. Mention your capacity to get along well with people and demonstrate that capacity in all your interactions with the dealer and his/her clients.