Mention Sales in Your Newsletter?

Since we’re talking about content for your newsletter this week, both here and in Art Marketing Action . . .

A caution against running sales and specials in your newsletter. Any discounted art is often seen as “crass” by artworld insiders. If work is discounted, it is usually done behind closed doors and in a whisper. You definitely wouldn’t open an art magazine to a "SALE" ad. You wouldn’t see a classy gallery with a “SALE” sign in the window. The only time you see these is in the newspaper in an ad trumpeting the giant, three-day "MASTERS OF ART SALE" at the Holiday Inn. It just isn’t done in certain circles. Think twice about doing it yourself if you want to be part of those circles.

The other reason not to advertise sales and specials is that you don’t want to upset those people who purchased your art at full price. If they see you are running specials, they might wait until your next sale to buy your work. Or they might not buy it anymore at all.

If you still want to mention discounted art, a better idea might be to add a "friends’ discount" coupon or handwritten note to certain people on your mailing list. This will make them feel special—like they’re "in" on a secret.

See what Kelly Borsheim said earlier and why she uses the word “savings” in her marketing language.

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5 comments to Mention Sales in Your Newsletter?

  • I agree with Alyson on this. I would suggest taking the idea of letting your clients in on a “Secret” a step further. Create an email (or snail mail) “Insiders” list of people who have bought your work and people who are really serious about buying it. Don’t put everyone on the list, just those people who really should be on it. Put everyone else on a “general” list. Send the “Insiders” a notice of a new group of work first and tell them that you’re thanking them for their past support and that you’re offering your new works to them first for a period of time. Your “Insiders” will feel good because they are getting preferential treatment and first opportunity to see your work. This has the added bonus of creating a bit of time urgency for them to act. The web sites that I build for artist have a “Membership Manager” built in and you can assign “Insiders” a higher security level on your website than other members. You could create a page of art that required members to log in to see the works. This has an added benefit. After they log in you know exactly WHO is looking at which pieces. After the insiders period expires, you can simply remove the security on the page and make it available to the general public. Sincerely, Clint Watson Software Craftsman and Art Fanatic

  • I have been contemplating offering one piece per newsletter for auction or a fixed price with some of the proceeds going to charity – would this end up looking as bad as sales?

  • Jennie, I don’t think that looks bad at all. I think it’s a great idea! Just highlighting one piece and then donating a portion to charity is a terrific way to handle it. AND, it makes you feel good.

  • Oh great! I’m so glad to hear it, it sounds like fun. now I just have to get it all up and running!