11. Invites and teasers

Sell! Or sell out… an Artists guide to promotion.

11. Invites and teasers

You are having an exhibition and the gallery will probably organise the invites to the opening, however if you have to do it for yourself for whatever reason, then here are a few guiding points to consider, and how to make use of “teasers” to enhance the results of your marketing efforts.

Invites, the aim is to entice people to be at your opening, a loose guide to their success is in the amount of people who come to the opening.

The invite should clearly tell people who, when, what, where, and give them some sort of indication as to the type of work on offer. It should be in printed and email form, so the design should take into account both processes and it’s ability to be effective in each situation.

The next consideration is the quality of the printing used, Although I get a lot of invites to exhibitions via email I still like to get hard copy ones, I tend to consider those with more interest for some reason and the coated (gloss or soft buttery finishes), bigger ones the better, multi-fold, multi image ones are simply great, but that’s me..

Lastly how long before you send them out? If it’s too long before the opening they might forget about it, if it’s too soon, other things may end up on their calendar…. The general guide seems to be from 2 – 4 weeks out from the opening.

Now to teasers. If you have a great contact list of interested people on your email list then chat to them in the lead up to the show with a teaser or three. Of course you want to avoid being a spammer, so make sure you provide some way of the person opting out of being a contact.

Teasers have the aim of intriguing a person to want to know more, in this case to look at the galleries website or your website about the upcoming show, if you have a site dedicated to a group show with info on it, then the teaser should have that web address on it. If you are using Facebook, twitter and similar social media contact devices make sure your teasers cause people to check out what you have online also. It is probably not useful to merely say a show is coming up and the invite will follow soon, is a waste of time, you need to engage them in a meaningful way.

Teasers can be a simple letter, a DL sized flier or card, an email image and text or a combination of the lot. Your aim being to have heaps of suitable people interested in your exhibition and your work.

Consider using a range of short sharp headlines to grab attention, so the reader feels compelling to want to know more. 

Compiled and edited by Steve Gray, Australian Contemporary Visual Artist © 2009+

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