Email marketing is one of the most effective tools you have got as a creative!
Email marketing is much better than social media to build a relationship with your ideal clients and to drive traffic to your website, as it’s much more likely that they actually receive your email, plus if they signed up to your newsletter then they are much more interested than your social media followers. Want to know why email is so effective to get sales for your creative business? Read this blog post with 8 reasons why.
But … what to write about in your creative newsletter?
Many creatives struggle with this, so here are some useful ideas that are not too salesy but useful to your newsletter readers too. Because always remember: You need to provide value for your readers for them to want to read your newsletter.
Think always about what’s in it for them first, rather than just promote your creative business. That’s when newsetters can be very useful indeed.
To help inspire you, here are 6 different types of content you can write about in your creative newsletter (with loads of creative ideas and examples):
NEWSLETTER content idea 1: news updates
Share news updates about your business in your emails … it’s a newsletter after all, isn’t it?
Emails are perfect to talk about upcoming craft fairs or trade shows you are planning to do, or when you launch new product collections. Or when a sold-out item is back in stock.
Also think about sharing your news in your newsletters when you win awards or get accepted for a prestigious exhibition, or get featured in the press. This is not boasting! Sharing news like this can really help improve your credibility and profile!
We love this short but very visual blog post on jeweller Carin Lindberg’s website about a statement pebble ring commission. This could easily be included in a newsletter too. A great reminder that you don’t have to write long essays in your email newsletters!
Or share news of your new studio space, your updated website or branding, or when you are doing a photo shoot or got new eco-friendly packaging. Your potential and existing clients love to hear about behind-the-scenes events like this, so do share it with them and don’t forget to add some images too.
Email newsletters are great to keep your audience informed about your progress and what you are up to. Make it more interesting for them to sign up by making them feel special and by adding value: share VIP invites to your events only with your newsletter readers, or let them be the first to get access to your new collection.
NEWSLETTER content idea 2: ROUND UP OF BLOG POSTS or social media videos
Email newsletters are great to drive traffic to your website. Is there a relevant topic that you write about regularly on your blog? Then do a ’round up’ of these various blog posts and promote them in a themed newsletter. This works really well if it’s timely such as blog posts around styling tips for summer or Christmas gift ideas.
Or maybe you have got a series of case studies of your commissions? Then write an email around how to commission you with links to each of the individual case studies. This can work brilliantly!
Not a big writer of blogs but you got great Instagram Reels or Facebook videos? Then again … use your newsletter to drive your interested email subscribers to your videos on social media. Don’t just rely on your social media followers to watch previous videos, you sometimes need to remind people that they are there!
newsletter content idea 3: use your voice & opinion
Is your work about something bigger than ‘just your work’? Have you got strong values around your work, such as sustainability and ecology or equality in design? Or are you an expert, in Japanese textile dyeing techniques or in contemporary riso prints?
Include a short essay, story or personal anecdote in your newsletter. This unique content and developing your voice will connect you so much better with your ideal clients!
Recently we have been really impressed seeing how designer and jeweller Simone Brewster has started to speak out much more in her emails and blogs, about her work and ambitions, about inequality, but also about her inspirations. Really powerful.
And yes, your newsletters can be an extension to the work you create, the topics you tackle, to develop your voice and purpose, to build your credibility and profile.
newsletter content idea 4: user-generated content
Do you ask your clients to take pictures of your work and share them with you, or with their contacts? This is not for everybody, but you might be surprised how happy some of your clients might be to share how happy they are with their wedding ring commission or new leather handbag, or their print for their nursery or the creation they made at your craft workshop.
You can create case studies of client projects and share these as blog posts or in your newsletters. It works really well to ask them for a nice testimonial, and then to use that on your social media, on your website or in your newsletter.
Do you teach (online) craft courses or professional courses? Then ask your students to share their work online or on social media.
Did you solve somebody’s problem? Are you a photographer who made a client really happy with a portrait or you created the perfect ‘small space’ solution with a custom-made piece of furniture? Then talk about that problem and your solution in your emails. It will give other potential clients ideas of how you can help them.
To make a change to text-heavy newsletters: Create a very visual newsletter with images of projects and quotes, or show loads of in-situ images of your clients showing off your work in their homes or offices. Don’t forget to include clickable links within the images back to the specific case studies on your website!
Or simply include images and links to your social media too, where you can encourage your clients to show off their commissions and purchases.
You can even do a call out in your newsletter for clients who are happy to share their purchase, their successes or their questions, and then you can profile them in future emails. People often love being part of your creative business and journey.
newsletter content idea 5: share your knowledge & experience
Are you an expert or teacher? Then answer your potential client’s questions, or give advice. You can write in your emails or refer to blog posts on your website, or maybe organise a free Q&A on Zoom to answer questions and so that people get to know you better?
This will build up your trust, credibility and profile.
And remember that when you are sharing value in your regular emails then people will love to read them, and they will be much more likely to want to buy from you or work with you.
Some creative content ideas to think about here:
- Are you a local business or proud to be situated in a special location? Then share tips around your favourite local shops and galleries, or walks or restaurants.
- Answer your potential client’s questions in your blog posts and emails – from how to commission a pet portrait artist to how to select the right fabric for upholstery, or how to translate English knitting terms into German.
- Share interviews with clients, people in your field, your role models, … by writing them for your blog or organise a Q&A on Zoom. We love the weekly (!) Instagram Live sessions that surface patter designers Mini Moderns organise around a Mid Century designer, colours or brand that they love. These guys have got so much passion for this! And by sharing it on social media, on their website, use clever hashtags for their niche, and then share on their newsletter they truly show their knowledge and expertise for mid century design.
- Share industry news, the latest colour or jewellery trends, industry gossip, facts, future forecasts, … curate a newsletter that shares useful information.
- Share your favourite books or podcasts too. Or did you go to an exhibition or craft fair, then write about it! Your newsletter and blog should not just be about you, but about your values and passions and to share that wider knowledge with your readers. Curating content like this is relatively easy and does not need to take up too much of your time.
What do you know a lot about? What are you passionate about? Then start sharing more of that with your audience!
NEWSLETTER CONTENT IDEA 6: TO PROMOTE YOUR PRODUCTS & SERVICES
Yes! Of course … your newsletter is a great place to launch your new creative products and services, to promote upcoming craft fairs or trade shows.
But, remember that your email subscribers didn’t sign up to be pitched to every week by you!
Your email newsletter subscribers sign up to your email newsletter because …
- they want special treatment e.g access to unique behind-the-scenes details or work-in-progress-videos or special invites for events or first access to your new collections.
- they want to learn something new, get answers to their questions
- they want to be entertained – It doesn’t always need to be serious! Big tip: share nice big, inspiring and professional lifestyle images in your newsletters, and write less!
Yes, do promote your creative products and services through your newsletters. Our top tips to get sales through your email marketing are:
- Send timely emails: Think about when your clients are most likely to buy, and then get in touch with a series of emails that gets them excited about your work.
- Send visual & short emails with a clear call-to-action: Show how gorgeous your jewellery is or how delicate or cosy your knitwear truly is. Focus on the emotions and why people buy your work. And include a clickable link directly to the product page, NOT the home page as it might be hard to find.
- Segment your mailing list: Send specific emails to specific groups of people e.g. previous clients need less introduction to who you are and a simple email about a new colour way might be all it takes.
We love email marketing at The Design Trust!
Why? Because we know it works!
Check out our Email Marketing for Creatives course here if you want to improve your email marketing too, if you want to feel less salesy in your emails, and get more sales and commissions.