As artists, staying in touch with our collectors and fans is vitally important. But we don’t want this task eating into our art-making time.
Sharing a secret Pinterest board with your mailing list is a way of making your subscribers and collectors feel really special by implicating them in your creative process - and it won’t cost you a ton of time!
We want to spend as much time as possible making art. We also know that for the health of our business, we need to touch base regularly with our mailing list, but it’s SO hard to find the time to send out newsletters.
I’ve already given you 7 Easy Steps for a Pain-free Weekly Blogpost. Today I’m sharing a great way to use a secret Pinterest board to give sneak previews of your latest work to your favourite people, without constantly sending out email updates.
Pinterest: Go Where Your Fans Are
The brilliant thing about Pinterest is that most of your subscribers are almost certainly already on it. How many people interested in visual stimulation DON'T use this platform?
And if that isn’t enough, statistics show that people browsing Pinterest are already in the mood for purchasing!
Let’s face it, it’s not easy to get your work pinned these days. The same pieces go round and round. And if your creative style isn’t in vogue, your pins may never see the light of day. But you can still take advantage of Pinterest as a ready-made gathering place for your existing fans.
Here’s exactly how to go about setting up your secret fan board.
Part 1. Create your Privileged Preview Board
1. Set up a secret Pinterest board. Call it something enticing: Privileged Preview; Studio Glimpse; For Fans’ Eyes Only. Whatever takes your fancy.
2. Load up some enticing images of current work(s) in progress, shots of your studio or workspace or anything else that you think your collectors and fans would be excited to see.
3. Invite to your board any of your mailing list members that you're already connected with on Pinterest.
Ok that's the easy bit done! The next part is going to require a bit more work to make sure that you reach more of your mailing list.
Part 2. Invite your Subscribers and Collectors to connect with you on Pinterest
1. Use your using mailing list app (Mailchimp, Constant Contact, Mailerlite etc.) to email your collectors and subscribers to find out which of them are on Pinterest and would like to be privy to your secret updates.
You don’t need to get fancy here. A photo of a current work in progress and a headline the likes of,
Are you on Pinterest? Would you like to see regular sneak peaks of my work as it develops?”
Follow this with a Call to Action for your subscriber to send you his/her Pinterest name.
Include a button or a link triggering an automatic email reply to you. Or if that’s too technical, just include a link to your email address.
2. So that in the future you get your subscribers’ Pinterest information up front, add a new opt-in question to your mailing list sign-up form. Use the same text as your newsletter headline (“Are you on Pinterest? Would you like to ...”) and include a Pinterest Name field.
You could even make your sneak previews part your sign-up enticement:
Sign up for my mailing list and also get exclusive peaks of my work in progress via my secret, subscribers-only Pinterest board."
Part 3. Maintain and Expand Your Pinterest Connections
Your secret board is going to require a minimum amount of maintenance:
1. It’s a good idea to create an infographic of your rules for your secret board and move it into first place where new collaborators can see it.
Your fans are unlikely to start spamming your board but there’s no harm in setting some ground rules from the beginning.
An extra bonus is that you can allow your Secret Board’s collaborators to invite other people to join the board who might be interested in your work. You could mention this here to remind them!
2. When you get new subscribers to your mailing list, you’ll need to remember to add them to your secret Pinterest board.
There really ought to be a way to automate this but I can’t find one so I suggest adding this as a recurring task to your agenda.
Check your mailing list software (once a day, week or month - depending on your subscription rate) for new subscribers and then follow through on Pinterest by inviting them to your secret board.
3. You need to keep adding new images to your board! Get into the habit of photographing your work in progress and your workspace regularly - daily or weekly at the very least. (You’ll find these photos invaluable for all sorts of other things, without doubt!)
Again, schedule a regular slot for retouching and uploading the photos to your secret board.
4. By looking at your subscriber’s Pinterest boards, you will get useful insight into what kind of art they are interested in. This can help you better target your fans and collectors with new work appropriate for them. Take advantage of this by sending a link to a specific piece of work to any of your Pinterest connections you think it will particularly interest. People like to be remembered, but be selective so your fans don’t feel spammed!
Keep Your Art Fans in the Loop
Regularly sharing your new work on a secret Pinterest board with your fans and collectors in this way is a fabulous way of keeping them in the loop without tedious hours doing mail-outs.
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