Contact Lists: The Basics

I haven’t said it in awhile, but remember that your contact list is your #1 asset. No one knows the same people you do and people are more likely to buy from you if they know and like you.

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Do your emails provide a call to action?

You don’t get what you don’t ask for and Jill Rosoff wasn’t shy about asking her email subscribers for help. Jill went a step further than most artists do in their messages. She asked the people who most appreciate her art to share it with others who might be interested.

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Storing Your Contact Lists

While it would be nice for your contact list to be stored in a single database, life doesn’t usually work out that neatly. I share how my contact lists are stored among three different platforms: 2 on my computer and 1 online.

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Old-fashioned Marketing (that Works!)

Shelly Lewis Stanfield, Fresh. Acrylic and charcoal on birch panel

Not embracing email, blogs, and social media? Not to worry! Artists can achieve amazing results with traditional marketing and networking.

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Art Marketing Action Podcast: Old-fashioned Marketing


Audio version of the post with the same name. Not embracing email, blogs, and social media? Not to worry – artists can achieve amazing results with traditional marketing.

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Cleaning Up Your Mailing List

I like Catherine Foster’s recent email blast that encouraged recipients to unsubscribe if they did not want to remain on her list. Read her very short message and why I like it.

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Redefine Your Mailing List

Lynda Cole, Moonlight March. Pigment ink on rag paper.

Your #1 asset in your art business is the people you know and, more importantly, the people who know you.

We group these people together, call them a “mailing list” and store their information in a database. If we’re on top of things, we use that information from time to time.

Lynda Cole, Moonlight March. Pigment ink on rag paper, 8 x 20 inches. Edition 25. ©The Artist

In 2007 I defined an artist mailing list as follows:

. . . a mailing list contains names and contact information of people you know or might like to know. For the artist, a mailing list usually begins with friends and family, and then expands to buyers and potential buyers. You use your mailing list to stay in touch with all of these people — to keep them informed of your

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Art Marketing Action Podcast: Redefine Your Mailing List

Audio version of the post with the same name. Your database of contacts consists of your mailing lists and connections through social media. While all contacts are valuable, your traditional mailing list is comprised of the people who have purchased art from you or supported you in some other way, and they are the most valuable contacts you have.

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What is a contact list?

The definition of a mailing list should be expanded and reconsidered as a “contact list.” Social media puts you in touch with all kinds of people that aren’t on your traditional mailing list.

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Invite Friends to Join Your Newsletter List

Jeanne Guerin-Daley, Friendship Sprig, cyanotype

Jeanne Guerin-Daley started an artist newsletter, but there are still many people in her contact list who have not subscribed. She’s knows a lot of them would be interested in receiving her updates, but she doesn’t want to violate their trust or any spam laws. How does she encourage them to subscribe?

I applaud Jeanne’s hesitation to add her friends to her regular newsletter list without their consent.

If you have a prior relationship with someone, adding them to your newsletter list is probably not breaking any laws (as long as the other CAN SPAM laws are adhered to)*. But it might violate the trust between you and your friends. *Note: This is not intended to be legal advice.

In my opinion, breaking the trust between friends is worse than breaking the law, and the results are ultimately more devastating.

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