This customer uses email’s visual appeal to sell fine art
Kim Rody, the Fishartista
List Size: 1,808
Open Rate: 41.2%
Kim Rody is a fine artist who specializes in large acrylic canvases that feature images of the sea and its creatures. Kim has been a full-time artist since 2000 and she uses email marketing to develop and nurture a specific niche of followers, some of whom she hopes become collectors of her work. In addition to her large canvas paintings, Kim also sells giclée prints and note cards featuring her art.
As Kim explains, selling art is always a challenge, no matter what the economic condition is. “It’s important to nurture relationships with people who are drawn to your work,” Kim says. “Buying art is definitely a ‘splurge’ purchase rather than a necessary one.”
In order to capture those “splurged” dollars, artists like Kim have to stay in front of their audience and remain top of mind. Kim uses an email newsletter to show off her new paintings, to share a calendar of events where her work will be shown, and to post links to her blog content and Facebook page. “If I’m running a special that can be found at the bottom of the email, I also tease it throughout the newsletter,” Kim explains.
Why email? “I'm a visual person, and I build the newsletter around my images, whether they’re paintings or personal pictures,” Kim says. “I let the words and images play off each other.”
Kim encourages customers to refer her newsletter and artwork to friends by adding multiple “Forward to Friend” buttons in each mailing and offering a calendar featuring her art to customers that refer business her way. “It’s a great way to get qualified referrals,” Kim says. “Folks think hard about who they want to refer, and only send my email to friends that will have an interest in what I am doing.”
While she doesn’t track specifically the return on her investment, Kim says that each newsletter she sends out more than pays for an entire year’s subscription to Constant Contact Email Marketing. The newsletter generates sales through the deals she offers, and drives traffic to events where her art work is being shown, which can result in further sales.
The newsletter is also a great conversation starter between Kim and her customers. “My favorite response is when customers tell me they love a specific painting and why they do,” Kim says. “Of course, I also like it when they tell me they want to buy it.”