Here I’m going to share why using an email nurture sequence is invaluable for cultivating new relationships with gallery mailing list subscribers and prospective art collectors. There are various ways an art gallery business can put this marketing strategy into practice.
If you have a mailing list signup form on your website inviting visitors to receive your newsletter, you likely have many people on that list you don’t know.
How can you build a better relationship with these people from the start, just based on an email address? You can implement an automated email nurture sequence that can help new subscribers get to know the gallery better and feel more comfortable reaching out to you.
Businesses use an automated email nurture sequence in many industries where relationships are a factor of long-term success. Interestingly, I don’t believe I have ever seen an art gallery use this strategy. And I’m literally on hundreds of art gallery email lists.
[Yes – my inbox is out of control.]
What is an email nurture sequence?
Think of it as a first date. Someone agrees to go out with you (by joining your gallery’s mailing list), and of course, you want to make an excellent first impression and get to know each other. That is precisely what a nurture sequence is designed to do.
It is a way for you and your subscribers to go on a first date through a series of 3-5 emails designed for your subscriber to get to know the gallery and encourage them to share more about their tastes and needs for art.
Towards the end of the sequence, you ask them to engage by sharing their interests and needs with you. You do this by including an online survey or invitation to speak one-on-one.
When you put a nurture sequence together, you have a powerful tool to introduce your gallery’s new prospects to the gallery program, mission, artists, and services at an unintimidating, comfortable pace. It provides them with light educational content to build awareness about what your gallery offers and keeps them interested enough to keep opening your regular gallery newsletter.
A nurture sequence is built in advance and scheduled to go out automatically when triggered by a new subscriber joining a mailing list.
Why use a nurture email sequence for your gallery?
An art gallery must cultivate relationships with new art collectors continuously. You know this.
Your art gallery’s email list is still one of your most valuable assets because it is comprised of warm leads for future sales. Your list was built from people who had enough interest in what your gallery offered to invite you into their inboxes.
A big challenge to overcome is getting people to stay engaged and ensuring they feel comfortable reaching out to inquire about a piece of art or asking for guidance about incorporating art into their home. You also want to make it easy for subscribers to understand if your art gallery is a good fit for their needs.
When that happens, you get more qualified sales leads.
Is this strategy right for your gallery business? Consider if your gallery fits the following:
- Your collector-based is made up of mostly older people who are downsizing and not purchasing art as often. It would help if you built strong relationships with a new generation of collectors.
- Generation X and Millennial art lovers are coming to gallery events but not purchasing due to a lack of confidence or knowledge about collecting art.
- You have an extensive email list, but open and click rates are low for your newsletter
With each new subscriber to your list, a nurture sequence starts to build those new relationships in a helpful and interesting way.
What is involved in putting this strategy to work for your gallery mailing list subscribers?
Putting your nurture sequence together will require a little upfront planning and getting each email created within your email marketing platform and scheduled to go out in intervals. After that, however, it is all on auto-pilot, so you can get back to the day-to-day of running the gallery.
You want to outline your goals for this strategy. You probably already have some idea about why many subscribers join your gallery mailing list in the first place. Align your goals and your content to those reasons.
When planning what each email will focus on in the sequence, think about
- Your gallery’s overall program
- The value proposition to collectors
- The services you offer
- The artists you represent.
Also think about specific calls to action for each topic. What action do you want your new subscribers to take with each email?
It is best to keep the majority of the content within your sequence evergreen. You want to be able to put the strategy in place and not have to update too frequently. So, this is not a place to highlight upcoming events, but you could share key annual events your gallery does, such as a holiday show, annual small works exhibition, or annual group show.
I recommend you keep your emails short and with a relaxed tone. Each email should offer an opportunity to either contact the gallery, respond to a survey or click over to your website to learn more on a topic.
This increases the value to your readers and enables you to track success and better understand what kinds of calls-to-action are resonating the most.
Getting your sequence to function correctly depends on the email service provider you use. This type of functionality is usually called Marketing Automation or Nurture Sequence. Mailchimp, Constant Contact, Active Campaign, and other big providers will have good training and easy-to-follow steps for putting a sequence into the system.
If you are a Gallery Fuel member, I put together a checklist to walk you through the planning, creating, and tracking stages. Also included are some ideas for email topics that might appeal to your gallery mailing list subscribers and align with your goals.
Checklist – Gallery Nurture Sequence (PDF, File size 163 KB)
To the Point
If your art gallery business needs to find new ways to forge relationships with collectors, then a nurture sequence should definitely be added to your marketing strategy.
Many potential art collectors enjoy art and can afford to buy it but don’t know where to begin or feel intimated walking into an art gallery. Your gallery’s email nurture sequence should be designed to overcome those apprehensions and build rapport.
An art gallery email nurture sequence is a long-term strategy to cultivate relationships for future sales with your mailing list subscribers. The intention is not to sell immediately. Remember the first date analogy and be creative with the kind of information you share in your sequence.
Do you have questions about implementing this strategy for your art gallery? Ask me in the comments below, or shoot me an email. I can help you.