Original New Orleans Art by Debbie Ainsworth

Art Marketing – Reevaluating Marketing Techniques

Okay, I tried the marketing tips recommended by the podcast I’ve been listening to. I wanted to make the whole thing into a process … take pictures on one day, add the print to my store the next, write a blog post about the print, write another blog post about whatever, share things on Facebook on a certain day, send out a newsletter twice per month, and doing updates of current paintings on Instagram. Whew! Sounds like a lot, but I broke it down into a system. The idea was to work marketing around my daily schedule, and leave nights and weekends available for making art. I worked the system for a month, and now I need to decide which things I’m going to keep doing, and which I’m not.

I like posting updates to Instagram. It’s fun to do, updates are easy to share on Facebook, plus I get to scroll through a lot of other artists’ work, which I love. 🙂 I also like doing the blog updates, one for new additions to the store, and one like this one. I’m not too sure about the email marketing part, though.

First, I had problems with my service, Mail Chimp. They transitioned from requiring subscribers to confirm their wish to be added to the list by default. Instead, just entering the email address was enough. Mail Chimp also turned off Captcha, which is meant to stop bots from signing up. I knew something was wrong, because I got about 50 signups in two weeks. I was able to see that the majority of them were either from Russia or Sweden. Weird, huh? When I finally got all the loopholes nailed down, I stopped getting any signups.

The last newsletter I sent out, which was the third, I was the only one who opened it. LOL It makes me wonder how effective email marketing really is. Most of the people on my list follow me on Facebook, so they are already getting the marketing I do there and on Instagram. Do I need to hit them a third time? The Newsletter takes two days, sometimes three to put together. Is it the most effective use of my time?

The other thing I’m not comfortable with is the discounts. The podcast recommended offering a discount to signup for the Newsletter. Offer one when you launch a new product. Offer an exclusive one in the Newsletter. Offer Holiday discounts. All of these discounts just didn’t feel right to me. I know I’m supposed to stop thinking of my art as my baby and start thinking of it as a product to sell, but offering so many discounts and so often just felt cheap. The podcast said to create a sense of urgency by having limited time discounts. Is there really a sense of urgency when you’re going to be offering another 3 DAY ONLY sale shortly after this one ends? Not that I don’t want to have sales and offer discounts, but I want them to be special. I don’t want it to be the blue light special at K-Mart.