Ilma from MailerLite

Ilma6 min read Tips & Resources June 17, 2014

Email marketing tips for artists & art galleries

Email marketing tips for artists & art galleries

If you work with art, you have a major advantage compared to other businesses.

You offer a real product which often comes with a lot of interesting background information. When done right, email marketing for artists and art galleries and other institutions can be very fruitful.

Get started: build an email list

#1. Collect email addresses in person

The easiest way to get emails is to focus on the interactions that take place every day via email, telephone or in your gallery/studio.

You may write down the email addresses, have a pad of paper or a collection area for business cards so people can quickly opt-in to your email newsletter. Explain what attendees will receive for subscribing so that they know what to expect when they receive your emails.

Ask for permission when you are talking to dealers/prospects on the phone or via email.

Your email marketing list for artists can include:

  • Family, friends
  • Business contacts
  • Fans and frequent visitors
  • Clients and future clients or prospects
  • Art dealers, designers, artists and other art professionals.
  • Influencers in the art scene, including bloggers and critics
  • (Local) news and magazine editors

#2. Sign-up form on your website

Have a VISIBLE and short sign-up form on every page of your website.

Let people know what you will get if they sign up (invitations to receptions, behind scenes, special offers).

Read more on how to grow your email list
Ultimate Guide to Email Marketing: #1 Growing Email List

Sign-up form in 20×200 Project:

Sign-up form to Lisson Gallery:

Use the newsletter to build a relationship with your audience

Remember: people are on your list because they took action and signed up for your newsletter to receive your content.

Art is a luxury good. That means people aren’t going to buy pieces regularly, they’ll buy them occasionally. Instead of going for a fast sale every time you send an email, try offering your subscribers content that is unique, engaging and useful.

We like Perry Marshal’s method: 80% content / 20% pitch. Rather than pitching in every message, we recommend making deposits first…for 3 or 4 messages of helpful content. And then offer something.

Here’re our suggestions:

  • The most common theme for art newsletters is to announce a show opening.
  • News. Be certain that your subscribers are always the first to hear about new pieces, gallery installations, and commission opportunities. Announce beforehand that your subscribers will get first dibs on any premium or limited edition prints or pieces.
  • Show behind-the-scenes and works in progress. People love peeking into an artist’s process. Show people a sliver of what it’s like to live your creative life! This also helps to pique people’s interest and is an easy way to get them primed for the new artwork you have coming.
  • Digest about local events & art news. Most of your customers live somewhere around and are interested in art events. Share the local news or news about the art market that you find interesting and useful.

Artspace.com offers weekly art news and features + free shipping for those you are ready to buy now

  • Share your advice about art.

Here is a great example of Artsy suggesting art walks with children in NYC. That’s very unique and useful content for any art lover that is a parent.

ArtShare.com has special conversation series to educate customers about collecting Chinese contemporary art.

  • Invite to special events in your gallery/studio. Like, talks, film screens, and art courses. Your subscribers will be happy to be first to get to know about them.
  • Special offers for holidays.

More suggestions for your newsletter:

  • Share your artist’s/your inspiration. This is a great way to connect with your readers and help them feel closer to your artist or you. You may share photos, links to great articles and images of the objects that inspire.
  • Share reviews & testimonials or encourage customers to write them. Testimonials can add tremendous value to lots of messages.
  • Summon on your social profiles. Share the photos & post that were most shared and liked.

ALWAYS include in the newsletter:

  • Good visuals (images or video).

One thing that shouldn’t be forgotten, especially in the arts, is the power of images.

The human brain processes visuals 60,000 times faster than text and 90 percent of the information transmitted to the brain is visual. You are surrounded by perfect material for images. Use that.

  • Address of your gallery/studio.
  • Opening hours.
  • Contact telephone number.
  • Email address to reply.
  • Use the name of a person and the name of the gallery in the email’s “from” line.
  • Link to your website.
  • Visible call-to-action.
  • Links to social media that you use.
Are you new to email marketing?
Check this Ultimate Guide to Email Marketing

P. S.

Add a P.S. – using a p.s. has been a staple of top print copywriting techniques for decades. Adding a p.s. is a proven way to get more clicks on your email marketing for artists campaigns. Make it relevant, mindful and always include a call to action link.

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