8 (Other) Occasions To Send Postcards That Promote Your Art

Ann Cunningham printed six postcards at once with the intent to distribute them within the next year. That’s dedication!

Today we take time out to honor the humble, under-utilized, centuries-old, low-tech postcard.

Why spend virtual ink on such an old-fashioned method of communication? Because postcards can do what email cannot do.

Postcards can’t be targeted as spam by an aggressive filter.

Postcards can’t be accidentally (or purposefully) deleted by recipients.

Postcards are likely to be tacked to a refrigerator or kept as a memento.

Postcards are tactile. We can hold them in our hands and ponder them. They have the potential to delight, which is something we rarely say about email these days.

You, like the private clients I advise, would benefit from sending three or four postcards a year.

Postcards are most often used to invite people to an upcoming exhibition or open studio.

Some artists design a single postcard with a schedule of all upcoming shows they’re participating in.

But if you don’t have an upcoming exhibition, you might wonder what you’d say on a postcard or why you’d send one in the first place.

Here are 8 other occasions for using postcards to promote your art and build relationships with your list.

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Eureka! The Purpose Of Your Newsletter

Eureka! The purpose of your artist newsletter.

A couple of years ago, I wrote an article about why artists should publish newsletters. I’m delighted that people read it and remembered its basic premise: that artist newsletters aren’t for making sales.

However, I’m troubled that some of that article has been misunderstood, or perhaps I left too much room for misinterpretation.

It’s time to set the record straight on artist newsletters.

First, a definition. A newsletter is an email sent on a regular schedule, which probably has regular features. Mine has a personal note at the top, a client testimonial, a featured article, and a featured product.

Every time I sit down to write my newsletter, I know that I have to fill in these areas before it can be sent.

My newsletter is sent weekly. You don’t have to do this. Monthly might work better for you.

But a newsletter has a regular schedule. It’s reliable. It’s a promise you make to yourself and your art. It’s also a promise you made to people when you asked them to sign up for your list.

When you ask people to sign up for your newsletter, they know they’re going to get it when you promise it.

Purpose of a Newsletter

The primary purpose of your newsletter is …

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Rx for Sloppy Newsletter Syndrome

Rx for Artist Newsletters

There’s an epidemic going around.

Don’t panic. If it strikes, you won’t need to rush to the ER or be quarantined. But you will need to take immediate action.

Your physical health isn’t in peril, but the health of your art business is at stake.

The epidemic is SENS – Sloppy Email and Newsletter Syndrome. Let me explain the symptoms so you can self-diagnose.

Symptom 1: Missing Name

This is the most destructive of all the SENS symptoms.

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5 Steps to a Magazine Feature of You and Your Art

photo of Patricia Griffin

The November 2014 / January 2015 edition of Professional Artist magazine features an article by me titled “Think Before You Leap: Beware of People Who Tell You to Follow Your Passion.”

The editor suggested photos of artists at work to accompany the article and I knew exactly who to contact: ceramic artist Patricia Griffin.

Patricia Griffin in her studio. Photo by Debbie Markham.

Patricia is a member of my Art Biz Incubator and I receive her newsletter.

Months ago she sent an email with gorgeous photos of her in the studio. I complimented her on the images and she told me that she had hired a professional photographer to take photos of her in the studio. It showed.

Patricia’s photos were so engaging that they stood out among the hundreds of emails I see from artists. I remembered them

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I Love Email (But I Love Real Mail More)

Envelopes and Labels

You know I love email, right?

I don’t necessarily love all of the spam that hits my inbox or the countless hours I spend reading and replying to email, but I can’t imagine running my business without it.

How would I ever be able to help as many people as I do for such a bargain rate?

And as much as I love email, I love real mail even more.

The supplies arrive.

Why You Should Rave About Real Mail, Too

Here are three reasons why I’m raving about real mail to my students, members, and private clients, and why you should, too.

1. Real mail is tactile.

Envelopes and postcards are things you can touch. You can cut, tear, and unpack a package (sometimes you can even smell it).

Add a handwritten note and voilà! You’ve enhanced your

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Are You Announcing, Commanding or Inviting?

Tamara McElhannon’s announcement

Are you announcing, commanding, or inviting in your marketing messages? There is a place for each of these in your art marketing, but I encourage you to be aware of which you’re using and when. An announcement is a presentation of the facts. “I’m having an exhibition. The opening is at this time and this place. Here’s how you see my art.” Tamara McElhannon’s lovely announcement is pictured here.

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5 Cures for the Email Blahs

Jill Rosoff does a good job sending solo emails for events such as this watercolor workshop

Email has become indispensable for marketing, but sometimes we can’t see what’s right under our noses. If you are in an email funk and not seeing results from what you’re sending, consider these five remedies. 1. Understand the difference between newsletters and solo emails. A newsletter is usually a regular update (weekly, bi-weekly, or monthly) that has consistent features.

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31 Types of Photographs You Can Use to Promote Your Art

Adele Sypesteyn paintings in a room

Don’t underestimate your audience’s desire to know more about you and more about your life as an artist. And never underestimate the story that a good photograph can tell. Share photos of Your Art, Your Office, Your Studio, and You. I’ll bet you already have a lot of these photos, but are you showing them? Could you share a quick link to them if you were asked?

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The Big Fat Artist Video Challenge

In Promote Your Art Through Video, R. Daniel Foster left us with a challenge. If you participated in this teleseminar (and you can still sign up here) and created a video as part of the challenge, we want to hear from you. Please leave your video link in a comment on this post and tell us what you most enjoyed about the seminar. We’ll give you free feedback.

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The Secret To Powerful Videos That Showcase Your Art

R. Daniel Foster

Filmmaker R. Daniel Foster explains how video’s message and meaning must be in sync in order to be a powerful marketing tool.

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