Art Marketing Action: Double check your publicity text

An artist recently sent me a link to her exhibit listing on the venue’s website, but there was no location mentioned anywhere on the page! Details about the exhibit were sketchy, and the artist was too close to the event to see that important information was missing.

Don’t rely on your venues to get the publicity right. Take charge!

Whether it’s your responsibility or the venue’s, every event listing and invitation should consider the 5 Ws and 1 H of P.R.: Who? What? Where? When? Why? How? For an artist’s event, this might mean including the following information.

Myra Knapp
Myra Knapp, Stillness. Oil on canvas, 24 x 30 inches. ©The Artist.

WHO are the artists? Who is the sponsor? Who is invited? Who has more details?

WHAT will people see? What should they bring? What should they wear? What should they expect? What link can they click to get more details? What email or phone number can they call if they have a question?

WHERE is the event taking place? Where do people park? Don’t forget to add city and state/province to the event details. If you’re promoting it online, you have an international audience. Web visitors won’t know if you’re in Springfield, Illinois or Springfield, Massachusetts. Make sure to list the complete address, not just the street name and number.

WHEN does it start? When does it end? If it’s an opening, list the times. If it’s an ongoing exhibit that will remain on view, tell people how long they’ll have to see it.

WHY is this event occurring? This isn’t always necessary, but you’ll provide a “Why” if it’s a fundraiser or a celebration.

HOW do people get tickets? How do they get there? How can they find your art if they can’t attend the event?

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KNOW THIS———-~> Taking the time to double check your facts could save you from embarrassment, while saving your fans some frustrations.

THINK ABOUT THIS—~> You’ve heard the saying “Measure twice, cut once,” right?

DO THIS————~> When you send an invitation or are notified that details are posted on your venue’s site, double check the information against the 5 Ws and 1 H. Providing all of the details will save you time answering emails and phone calls. Getting it right the first time will also reflect your professionalism.

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5 comments to Art Marketing Action: Double check your publicity text

  • That bit of advice about posting the invitation on a website just led me to a new decision…Instead of sending out full details in emails, I’m going to send only ‘Invitation to Vernissage’ text with a link to a website with pictures & info…I recently got caught in a bind when a gallery changed the date of the event to coincide with a neighbourhood street event…I had already sent out a thousand email invites & felt scared to resend an Oops email, fearing I would antagonize by appearing to spam…Had I just sent a link, I could have easily changed the information on the website- plus added the names of artists who had only recently decided to participate, plus updated with better text as the show approached…

  • Deb Gonzalez

    Sari, I think in your situation a follow up email would be entirely appropriate and not considered “spam.” Anyone who checked the link before the changes would not know of the changes without the 2nd email and they might try to show up for your event on the wrong date. (now that might really upset them!)

    But I do like the link idea, so as the event comes together, your guests will have easy and quick access to the most up-to-date details.

    These are good common sense reminders – Thanks Alyson.

  • [...] a step further at her Art Biz Blog by giving you a “how to” on writing correct copy. Double Check Your Publicity Text .  “Taking the time to double check your facts could save you from embarrassment, while [...]

  • [...] about the event as soon as it’s set. On your blog, for example, you might first post about the event details in an announcement. Then, you can mention it once a week in the context of other posts. Your [...]

  • Thanks for making this point Alyson. I often see announcement/invitations that mention a venue with no address – not even the town. They seem to assume everyone knows where they are. That might work for local folks but with the internet these announcements are literally BROADcast and it can be frustrating to see an interesting event only to do the research and find out it’s too far away.