In today’s digital age and all over crazy times, small businesses are constantly searching for ways to reach their target audience, stand out from the competition and be afloat amongst the big sharks. While social media platforms and paid advertising are popular marketing tools, sending emails remains one of the most effective and affordable ways to connect with your customers.

A well-crafted email campaign can increase engagement and brand awareness, and drive sales and revenue. With the right strategy in place, a mailing list can be a powerful best friend for small businesses looking to build and grow their customer base and nourish brand loyalty.

So join me on a journey exploring the power of email marketing, I will also share useful tips and the best tools I use for my business and that you need to look for when building a mailing list that makes sense for your creative business and that will help your small business thrive. So, let’s dive in and discover the power of building and nourishing a mailing list and how it can boost and improve your small creative business!

Benefits of having a mailing list for small businesses

Isabella Strambio seating at her studio desk

Email marketing is a powerful tool that can provide a range of benefits for small businesses. Here are some of the key benefits of having a mailing list:

  • Increased brand awareness and trust

It’s hard to have a meaningful conversation on Instagram with new followers, however, via email, you can go in more depth and share more information. Every time your subscribers open your emails they learn more about you, your brand, and your products, they connect with you so which leads to building trust and loyalty.

  • Cost-effective

Compared to other marketing channels, email marketing is relatively inexpensive. With the right tools and strategy in place, you can reach a large audience starting with little money investment, you don’t even need a website to have a mailing list and most importantly always remember that those contacts are yours. I always use the example that if Instagram or Facebook shuts down tomorrow and so far you’ve solely relied on social media to get new leads and connect with your audience and customers, you will be left with nothing!

  • Increased sales and revenue

Having a mailing list can help you drive sales and revenue as you can promote your beautiful products to your most loyal subscribers. By including call-to-action buttons and links in your emails, you can encourage your subscribers to make a purchase or sign up for your services. You then optimize and can even create targeted messages for specific groups of subscribers increasing engagement with your targeted conversations.

  • Measurable results

All the mailing list providers allow you to measure the results of your campaigns. On a more advanced level, you too can learn to analyze metrics such as open rates, click-through rates, and conversion rates, you can optimize your campaigns for better results and modify/change your strategy. And this is why it’s important to understand and be able to read all the metrics that matter.

Building an effective email list for your small creative business

To create an effective email marketing campaign, you need a quality email list. Here are some of my best tips for building an email list:

  • Offer incentives

Offering incentives such as exclusive content, discounts, or free resources can encourage people to sign up for your email list.

  • Use the power of social media

Promote your email list on your social media channels by sharing links to your opt-in form and highlighting the benefits of subscribing.

  • Keep your list clean

I know it can be scary to delete subscribers, but you need to regularly do a spring clean of your email list by removing invalid email addresses and inactive subscribers. This exercise ensures that your messages are reaching the right people.

Creating engaging email content that matches your small business values

To keep your subscribers engaged and interested in your brand, it’s important to create high-quality email content. For as much as can be hard to believe, you don’t need to be a writer to write creative and compelling content that your subscribers will love! Here are some of my tips for creating engaging email content:

  • Keep it concise and remember your voice is unique

Keep your emails short and to the point to avoid overwhelming your subscribers. Use clear and concise language to convey your message. Use your own voice, and even if whatever message you want to convey has been said and done before, remember you are unique, and only you can tell a story in your own creative way!

  • Include visuals

Visuals such as images, videos, and GIFs can help break up your content and make your emails more visually appealing.

  • Provide value

Provide valuable content that your subscribers will find helpful and informative. This could include tips, how-to guides, or industry news.

Tips for effective email subject lines

The subject line of your email is the first thing your subscribers will see, so it’s important to make it engaging and attention-grabbing. Here are 3 tips for writing effective email subject lines:

  • Keep it short

Keep your subject line short and sweet to avoid getting cut off on mobile devices. Aim for a maximum of 50 characters.

  • Personalize it

Personalize your subject line by including your subscriber’s name or referencing their past behavior or preferences.

  • Use emojis 😉

Using emojis can help your subject line stand out in a crowded inbox and add a touch of personality to your message.

Mailing list software for small creative businesses

There are a variety of software available to help you create and manage your email campaigns and subscribers. Here are the options I’ve been using to support my creative business:

  • Mailchimp

Mailchimp is a popular email marketing platform that offers a range of features and integrations to help you create and manage your email campaigns. This is the tool I’ve used to start my mailing list, and when I first started my creative business almost eight years ago I was fortunate enough to find a mentor that taught me the importance of building and nourishing my list.

While growing and nourishing my audience I realized that I needed a tool that could be more suitable for my small business with a limited budget and this is how I discovered ConvertKit which is an email marketing platform designed specifically for bloggers, creators, and small businesses. Perfect!

A few thoughts from me, Isabella! 

As a small creative business building and growing a mailing list remains one of the most effective and affordable ways to connect with your audience and drive sales. By building a quality email list and creating engaging email content consistently, you can increase brand awareness, build customer loyalty, and drive sales. You’re welcome to use the tips and best practices I’ve outlined here to create a successful email marketing campaign for your small business and let me know how it goes!

Still not sure how a mailing list can help your creative business? Here’s a snippet from my amazing student Ellie Fisher from @Elka_textiles. Listen to her brilliant results in just over a month since taking the course!


Do you want to learn how to start, nurture and grow a mailing list for your small creative business?

“BUILD AND NURTURE YOUR MAILING LIST” my new course where I’ll teach you a step-by-step system of how to build and nurture a mailing list and take your subscribers from followers to clients!

Have any questions? Want to chat it through?

Ready for more small creative business growth tips, news & strategies?

And if you haven’t started a mailing list yet or you are not consistent with your emails or need to grow your list, check out my new course ‘Build & Nurture Your Mailing List’ where I teach you step-by-step how to build your email list, connect with your ideal customers, generate consistent income and grow your business!

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Building and Nurturing a Mailing list: Why is Crucial for Small Creative Business Success – a Beginners’ Guide.

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