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Updated: Jul 25, 2023

I have discovered in all my years of helping artists and working in the corporate marketing world, that one of the main reasons email marketing doesn’t work for artists, is that artists don’t know what they are doing! I know it’s obvious, but hear me out. Since artists don’t always come from such a technical and marketing background, there is a little bit of imposter syndrome or even worse, they fail to act (on their email marketing) completely, saving it for that one futuristic day when something forces their hand, making them wish they got started way earlier. But that is OKAY, because I am here to help you avoid that! And don’t beat yourself up either, sometime you don’t know what you don’t know!

Which is why I put together this short post to help get you started.

Let me first start by saying that yes, email marketing is sophisticated, but it doesn’t have to be so intimidating and scary. While it does go beyond just inserting your fan’s name in the email so that they see a personalized message or tracking opens and clicks so that you know how effective your marketing messages are, that doesn’t mean you can’t get started. It’s always better to start now rather then later.

For the purposes of this post, I will be sharing some of my favorite proven and easy-to-implement methods for growing your email list and building a loyal band of subscribers. So let’s dive in!

1. Optimize your website for multiple opt-in’s.

Don’t just have one newsletter opt-in overlay on your website. Include subscriber boxes at the footer of your page, hello bar, or have designated sales landing pages that you use over and over again for certain services. Your website, if optimized with SEO is likely to get most of your traffic, and all sorts of things can point people there. Whether it’s social media posts, other sites, email campaigns, or native traffic, your website will be getting visitors, and one thing lots of brands struggle with is having multiple places visitors can opt-in to get on your list. You can have ebook opt-in and a newsletter. Think about the type of content your audience wants to receive and create multiple places on your website that can add these leads to your email list.

2. Irresistible Lead Magnet Offers

Whether you are hosting a free masterclass, free ebook, or free meditation, you can create multiple juicy content offers that will entice leads to subscribe to your list. Key for this to be successful is that the lead magnet offer should be relevant to audience and something they actually want! This is called making it irresistible. Other ingredients to an irresistible offer are: scarcity, relevance, high demand, exclusivity. Taking some time to re-think you offer gives clarity, and lets your customer see the transition from how they are now, to how they will be after using your product.

One last hack you can use to make your offer irresistible is to create some perceived value. This could be done by showing the monetary value with a strikethrough and giving it away for free or a heavy discount. The bottom line is if your offer isn’t irresistible, you should consider rethinking it.

3. Host a Free Challenge

This is one of my favorite ways to grow an email list, it does require a lot more effort and consistency in terms of delivery and engagement, but it can attract higher quality subscribers that are more likely to convert to customers later on.

4. Facebook Groups

Upon joining your Facebook group, offer newsletter subscription in the rule agreements. You can even offer prizes for those who invite the most amount of people to your group, thereby letting your leads help grow your list for you!

5. Promote a Quiz

This is becoming more popular and is a really fun non-traditional way to engage with your leads. You can even offer a prize for sharing your quiz link to the most amount of people, growing your list substantially! Essentially it is a similar strategy to the Facebook Groups where you are encouraging your leads to contribute to your subscriber growth.

6. Make sign up easy - Single sign on

If you offer a membership to anything, make it easy for subscribers to sign in or join with their Google or Facebook account. This will lower bounce rates and increase conversions because you are removing the barrier of a net new email and password, which let’s be real, we all hate because we have so many.

7. Discount Offer - Product Based

This is a top one for businesses and artists who are selling physical products (aside from digital services). A common discount amount is 10% upon signing up, but I have seen around the holidays larger discount offers. Check your margins, and see what you can afford in terms of this number.

8. Early Bird Pricing + Swag

For service-based business, you can off not only great early bird prices, but some cool swag to help leads who might be on the fence, sign up and actually convert to payment for your services and packages. Swag is a fun low cost way to personalize the buying experience and make it memorable. Who doesn’t want free stuff?

9. Offer opt-in CTA in your Instagram Bio

If you are using something like Linktree, this is easy to do and set up. Another great tool for offering a CTA button to subscribe from a bio landing page is InstaBio. You are essentially providing options of offerings on this single bio landing page that is linked from your Instagram Bio. Having this call to action might sound obvious but you would be surprised how many people miss this!

10. Sign Up CTA on Facebook Business Page

Facebook gives you a number of options for a call to action on your business page. And artists, if you haven’t create one, I strongly recommend doing that first. Choosing the ‘sign up’ option for your CTA provides just another low hanging fruit and low effort way to collect email addresses as leads discover you for the first time on social media.

I hope you found these 10 hacks for growing your email list helpful, and remember if this is completely outside your zone of genius, you can always outsource this! No shame in that, just more time back for you to do what you are best at. Or you can take on the task of learning some basic email marketing, that will always be an added bonus as the CEO of your own art business and brand.

Remember that growing your email list can have a huge ROI at the end, and email marketing is still the highest converting marketing channel, so have patience and don’t give up!

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