As an artist in todays age of social media algorithms, GDPR and computer hacking, it is more important that ever that you securely manage and maintain your own professional mailing list.
As well as giving you peace of mind that you are in control of your data and security, it can engage people’s interest in your work, ensure visitors receive notifications and invites to your exhibitions and shows, and it can also lead to sales.
There are so many benefits to mailing lists. They can act as a sale funnel. It is 10x harder to get a new customer than to sell to a current one! Through mailing lists, you are also able to generate new leads, while maintaining your current following.
REMEMBER - YOU control your mailing list. Unlike social media followers, your mailing list is completely your own to adjust, orientate and manage.
Here are our tips for effective mailing list strategies!
How to generate your mailing list.
This is the top of your sales funnel: collecting emails
Make sure you collect names AND email addresses at every possible interaction point.
Different ways to do this might be:
By leaving a book out at an exhibition, fair or show inviting interested parties to add their details. Log these in later and remember to be GDPR compliant by offering a final sign up validation step.
Ask your previous and current collectors for their contact details and permission to add to your mailing list.
Collect via your website: add in a ‘subscribe’ form, and either automate or manually transfer these details straight into your mailing list software or password secure system.
This one may take more thought. Some people only enter their email with something promised in return. This is where gated content comes in.
You can produce a guide, a blog post, a snippet from your practice, and have it automatically set up to send to the person signing up for your mailing list. This can be a fast way to grow your mailing list subscribers.
Add subscribe links to your social media:
You can add a direct link to 'subscribe to my mailing list' into your ‘website’ and in your social media bio or profile page.
Linktree is a great hack to add to your social media bio and offers a "subscribe to my mailing list" automated option among many other features.
Pop Up on your Page
An effective strategy is to have a pop up on the home page of your website, encouraging subscribers to join your mailing list. Something like this:
SUBSCRIBE TO THE PURE MAILING LIST
Here are our top tips for reaching your mailing list effectively as an artist:
This is the middle of your sales funnel: nurturing subscribers and building relationships.
When someone subscribes to your mailing list, it is polite and kind to send a ‘welcome’ email to them. This email can be automated with a quick message. Try to outline the links to your social media stack and website, and also the kind of emails they will be getting in the future.
This is a tricky one, and differs from artist to artist. Each email you are sending out should say something valuable. We recommend NOT sending out an email for the sake of it. Show your audience that each email is full of genuine updates and information, not padding, and time specific pieces.
We recommend you wait until you have a genuine updates, like an upcoming exhibition or initiative etc… Some exciting ideas could be: private views/ previews for shows, sharing features in newspapers or online magazines.
Subscribers also like work in progress features and time lapse videos if your tech skills are up to it.
Too many emails can lead to people unsubscribing! A good level of genuine content and genuine emails leads to better relationships with your list.
If it has been a very long time since your last email (e.g. 6 months) we recommend sending out a general update email, for example showing current work, changes in your practice, or something similar. You could even send a survey to get peoples opinions on something relevant to you or your practice - people love giving advice.
Does the content need to be about you?
This is a great tip. The emails do not necessarily need to be directly about you and your practice. For example, you could include a list of exhibitions or artists you have been enjoying recently.
Ensure all images are high quality and reflective of your work and practice.
Keep your tone authentic to you and your artistic brand.
This is the bottom of the funnel: converting leads into customers.
Keep your emails simple. In a nutshell, each email should have an effective Subject line, a clear message and a clear call to action - CTA
We suggest keeping the email picture-led, with less text. Keep important information standing out.
Subject lines should be short (under 20 words if possible), and perhaps including an emoji to stand out! Make these intriguing, but not clickbait. A good example could be: ‘Your personal invitation to Pure Art Exhibition 2021’
You can also include a teaser to the body of the email: We have missed you and we have bubbles on ice!
Make sure to include links as part of your CTA. Add buttons taking to the webpage you describe for quick access for your audience.
MailChimp is probably the most popular email marketing service - and the one we use at Pure! They have recently updated the software to an easier method to personalise your artist emails!
We also recommend you look at mailerlite and Sensorpro
WATCH THE SENSORPRO WORKSHOP HERE
Through a platform, you can segment your audience. For example into ‘Collectors’, ‘Gallerists’ etc… This will help you tailor your mass email content.
As we said - your mailing list is your own. Make sure to do your house keeping regularly. This includes removing inactive members and regularly sending out surveys to ensure interest from your subscribers. This will keep your lists fresh and a great and profitable resource!