8 Ways to Build Your Email Marketing List

Your list of customers and prospects is one of the most valuable assets your creative business has. We offer some suggestions to help you build that list.


On the computer sending emails to your list. ABI shares 8 ways to grow your list. Click on the image for the article.


Your email list is permission-based, meaning that people agree to allow you to contact them about your art or handmade work. We suggest a once-monthly email campaign to stay in touch, share your story and inspiration and become more memorable to your list.

1.  All existing customers – Each time you make a sale, whether in-person, online or elsewhere, make sure you have the email address of your buyer. If you haven’t reached out to them in a while (or ever), put them in a segmented list and get back in touch, re-introducing yourself to them if necessary. Then, stay in touch. Repeat buyers are the easiest to sell, so it is a priority to keep this group on your list.

2.  Friends and family – If you are just getting started, begin your list with people who know you, admire your work and would be happy to refer you to others.

3. Retail shoppers. Capture names and emails at retail shows, trunk shows and artist appearances by having a guest book handy and asking people to sign up to receive notifications of new work, events and special offers.

4. Website visitors. Having an email subscriber opt-in form on your art website is an essential. You want to drive traffic to your site, right?

5. Social media connections. Add email subscriber email opt-in forms on your social media profiles. You will need an ESP (email service provider) such as Mail Chimp, AWeber, or Constant Contact, who can create the signup form. This link can be incorporated into your Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and LinkedIn pages.

6. Through correspondence. Add an invitation and link to sign up for your list in the signature line of every email you send.

7. Gather referrals. When you send out those monthly emails, include a request to share and a “Forward” link to encourage recipients to send your messages on to other people they know, encouraging further subscriptions to your campaigns.

8. Blog readers. Got a blog? Include an email sign-up button at the bottom of each article you publish. A button works better than an inline link will to gather subscribers.


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  1. Excellent post and list! And so TRUE! It’s worth noting that the word asset, as used in this context, just brushes the surface.

    Many small business owner’s don’t realize that a vibrant email list, with ongoing statistical evidence of lead generation and sales via open rates, click-through rates, and conversion rates, increases the value of the business. This can have a positive affect for potential business loans as well as for selling the business.

    Hitting send using a professional email program like Constant Contact or Aweber at least once a month adds measurable value to the asset column. You may not think that you will sell your art business, but while you grow your list and make more sales, it’s nice to know you are increasing the value of your business if you ever consider selling.

    And the bigger the list, the more value, so grow those lists!

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