Newsletter practices and studio assistants

Worst newsletter practices
Over on Twitter, Lisa Call (@lisacall) said she unsubscribes to bad artist newsletters because no amount of good design or good branding can replace content. (Those are my words.) I agreed! Bad newsletter=bad branding=really bad idea!

Susan Donley (@sdonley) asked me to address the worst practices I’ve seen in artist newsletters. I thought this was fodder for a blog post, but I think it’s going to be a newsletter topic. Sneak preview:

Most artists’ newsletters would improve 200% if they took the time to write better copy and to inject their personalities into each issue.

(See “Send a Killer Newsletter” in I’d Rather Be in the Studio!)

Speaking of newsletters

Monday’s Art Marketing Action newsletter is the annual edition where I ask you to count your accomplishments for 2008. Might as well start now.

Need a studio assistant?
Last night’s INSIGHTS teleseminar with Sunni Mercer was terrific. She talked about the program she has set up with a university to get student-assistants. The university gets paid by the student, the student gets credit, and Sunni gets paid by the student.

You really do need an MFA or a heckuvan art career to be certified by a university to work with their students. But what struck me later was that much of what Sunni has put in place could be applied to any assistantship. You could even work with a local corporation that is community-minded and get them to sponsor you to give a scholarship to an artist-in-training. Lots more to chew on here.

Sunni mentioned stuff that you need to be aware of when you have an assistant in your studio–things I hadn’t considered–like OSHA regulations, liability issues (Can they use your power tools?!), and the fact that you don’t want to broadcast an assistantship and allow anyone and everyone to apply. Too big of a hassle.

She also discussed writing a proposal for a program, interviewing applicants, university paperwork required, and rules for assistants in your home and studio.

The audio program recording is now available as MP3 or CD from the INSIGHTS page. (But if you buy a book during the Big Book Sale, you get a 20% off coupon with it!)

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