- by Barney Davey
Do-It-Yourself Email Marketing For Artists Does Not Pay
Email marketing is not something you want to do on your own. Although, you can find software packages to manage an email list and send bulk mailings from your own server, it is not advisable. For time, expense, results and legality, email marketing for artists is not a good fit for as a DIY program.
Here are five reasons to avoid DIY bulk mail:
- To begin, you must keep your domain name and IP address from having spam-blocking services blacklist them. If that happens, you will find all of your email, both individual messages and mass messages blocked. Your Internet Service Provider (ISP) also may cut off your email service.
- Not all your subscribers receive email in HTML format, which allows for images, text formatting, background colors, and so forth. Your email marketing service will give you the option to create both HTML and text formats. It senses the type your subscriber uses, then delivers the correct version. Sending an HTML version to a text editor looks like crap, don’t do it. Email marketing services provide templates you can easily customize.
- Your subscribers need an automated process to opt-out of receiving more email. It’s both a legal and considerate action. Your email marketing service will provide a system that automatically removes any requests to opt out of your list. This helps keep your domain and IP address whitelisted with spam-blocking services. It also keeps you in compliance with the 2003 Can-Spam Act.
- Checking the success of your campaign is crucial. Your email marketing services provider will help you track how many messages were opened, how many clicked on links in the messages and which email addresses opened their message. Most will give you with a way to make A/B testing. This allows you to improve your messages and make them more effective.
- Your email marketing service will give you with opt-in forms, buttons and links. These will help you grow and manage your list with little routine involvement from you.
There are many options to accomplish email marketing for artists
For success in your art marketing efforts, you need an effective email marketing program. Fortunately, there are many affordable and free online email-marketing services available. There are so many options it makes choosing the best one for you a challenge.
Virtually all e-mail marketing service companies offer affordable, easy-to-use bulk e-mail services. You can use them to communicate with collectors, fans, dealers and prospects with a professional and legal system.
How Much Do Email Marketing Services Cost?
There Are Both Free And Paid Email-Marketing Services For Artists Available.
Paid email-marketing service providers base rates their rates on the number of e-mail addresses in your mailing list. The average plan runs between $15 and $20 a month for a list size of up to 500 with unlimited mailings within a given month. Compared to the cheapest bulk mail rates, email marketing is a bargain.
You can do better with free email marketing services. The two I recommend are Mail Chimp and FineArtAmerica.com. Mail Chimp offers a free plan for up to 2,000 addresses. You can send up to 12,000 emails every month. It is the program I use to collect opted-in email addresses and to send Art Print Issues blog updates.
FineArtAmerica.com is a free online marketing, print-on-demand and complete fulfillment resource for visual artists. I wrote this post about it last year: Fine Art America | Artist’s Ally | Entrepreneur’s Inspiration. If you want to learn more specifics about FAA’s email marketing services, click here.
The FAA service is particularly useful to help you promote your work listed in your online gallery and on the free website that is also available for those who pay the nominal $30 per year upgrade fee. With its easy-to-use formatting, it is an effective way to help you promote your work on the FAA site.
Using Mail Chimp, in addition to FAA’s email marketing services, gives you additional powerful features. These include list-building services such as opt-in forms, buttons and links. You also can send auto-responder and drip campaigns.
These are practical ways to send an automatic single response, or a series of timed responses to your subscribers. We will discuss how and when to use these features in a future post.
Paid Email Marketing Services
If you are lucky and diligent enough to grow your list beyond 2,000 names, you can upgrade to a paid service from Mail Chimp. Some other paid providers to consider include:
- Constant Contact
- Express Email Marketing
These are just a sampling. Ask around in your art marketing circles, or do your own online research to find even more services. It is best to settle on the one you think will work for you. Having to import a subscriber file from one service to another can present problems.
Using e-mail marketing services to drive traffic, create interest and make sales is cost-effective, and efficient way to promote your business and develop a growing, loyal fan base.
In the first installment of this series, Email Marketing for Artists | Building Your List | Part One, you learned ways to build your list. In future posts, we will answer questions about how often to send, what to include and much more. Stay tuned!
It was preceded by the introductory post: Email Marketing for Artists | A New Art Marketing Series – Get the Most from Email Marketing
- Email Marketing Podcast | Free Download Available
- 10 Tips to Make Email Marketing for Artists More Effective | Part Five
- Email Marketing for Artists | 10 Ways to Create Content | Part Four
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