Marketing Tips: Photographer Stacy Kranitz’s Eye-Catching Email Newsletter
Answer a question NRP Asked about the best ways for photographers to contact ESPN, Sports Network Senior Photo Editor Julianne Varacchi drew attention to the photographer’s email newsletter Stacy Kranitz. “It’s the perfect model for me for photographers reaching out,” Varacchi said. (See the full interview here)
A fine art documentary photographer with frequent editorial assignments, Kranitz sends out a newsletter two to four times a year to a mailing list of approximately 2,500 contacts. They include curators, gallery owners, photo editors, fellow photographers and others who have expressed an interest in his work over the years. The frequency of the newsletter depends on the ebb and flow of his work. “You want people to have eyes on your work, but the 2,500 [recipients] have an easy withdrawal option, and I appreciate their time. So if they open my newsletter, it will be filled with stuff. »
A highlight of Kranitz’s April newsletter is a hand-drawn map of the south-central Appalachian region. It shows all the towns within a few hours drive of Lexington, Kentucky and Smithville, Tennessee, the two towns where Kranitz splits his time. “I spent a whole day doing [the] map,” she says, explaining that she did it to help customers visualize her proximity to many places they might need a photographer, like Charlotte, North Carolina and Atlanta, as well as Indianapolis. and Columbus. Clients “keep sending people from New York and it’s driving me crazy! … So I really have to show them,” says Kranitz.
Kranitz started sending out email newsletters about a decade ago, “when things kind of fell apart in the media industry. I had less money to spend. [printed] the promotions. E-mail promotion was much cheaper; she estimates that it costs $300 or $400 a year to send newsletters.
Kranitz organizes each newsletter into sections presented as linked lists, including lists of recent assignments, recent and upcoming exhibitions, reviews or recently published articles on his work, and a list of anthologies that have included portfolios from his work. She keeps the text to a minimum, and each section includes four or five recent images. “I just do it how it feels right. And I keep it the same every time, with just a little variation: image text image text. Sometimes she tailors the newsletters slightly to different groups of recipients, sharing her travel itinerary with editorial clients, for example, but not with gallerists and curators. (Keeping a good database, with recipients divided into categories, is an important part of the job, she notes.)
Look April 2 Kranitz NewsletterVaracchi provided NRP with a list of everything she liked about it:
- Stacy’s contact information and website are at the very top, and she starts with fresh news about her personal work.
- She gives you an idea of her focus and passion for working in Appalachia and also how close she is to other cities. Which is extremely helpful.
- Stacy also has a list of recent work – the selling point and an easy-to-read, non-page link. Sometimes photographers will say they work with many different clients, then list them, then have photos broken down with links to recent work. And then several links to different sections of their website. Stacy does it all in a concise list without repeating the obvious – she works with a lot of different people on a variety of topics. When you give people too many options, they won’t watch any of them.
- Stacy lets her work speak for itself without overly detailed artist statements or repeating information. It reads like a journal entry, you get to know a little bit more about her as a person and a photographer (which is important for editors to know…we work with a lot of incredibly talented photographers, but when it’s is about making decisions about who to hire for a specific assignment (who you are is just as important as experience and approach)
- Even the font choice and size adds to the overall vibe
- I don’t need to read the paragraphs! Making a newsletter personal is nice, but doing it in one or two sentences is better.
The title of the newsletter, which appears in the subject line of his email sends, “is probably more important than a lot of things that worry me,” Kranitz says. She wants it to be “catchy” but “not misleading,” she says, “So I try to be literal and direct.”
For example, “Stacy Kranitz: New Book + Exhibition” was the subject of the newsletter she sent out on April 2. She begins by announcing that 2019 marks the 10th anniversary of her ongoing project in Appalachia called “Like it was Don(n) to me.” Twin Palms will publish the work in book form this fall, and the work will be exposed at the Rencontres de la Photographie in Arles this summer.
Kranitz says 30% of his 2,500 recipients, or about 750 people, clicked on his April 2 newsletter to read it. The open rate of its previous newsletter, last fall, was 43%. That’s typical, she says: Open rates fluctuate from newsletter to newsletter by about ten percent. Kranitz studies his analytics, which tell him who opens the newsletter and who doesn’t. Beyond that, she was unable to glean many clues as to why some newsletters are more successful than others. “I don’t know any of the secrets,” she said. “A lot of things confuse me.”
Kranitz says she’s always consistent about sending her email outings on Tuesday or Wednesday, around 11 a.m. His advice to other photographers who send out newsletters is to “have someone proofread it before you send it.”
It also advises against sending too frequent newsletters. “More than quarterly seems a bit aggressive to me,” Kranitz says. “I’m not at all convinced that sending more emails will get people’s attention.”
Kranitz says she plans to send print promotions again after a ten-year hiatus, hoping to reach people on her mailing list who never open her email newsletter. “It’s important to have a multi-pronged approach, but the great thing about email is that it’s so affordable.”
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How Stacy Kranitz Avoided Stereotypes in Her Appalachian Series
Stacy Kranitz and Zoe Strauss on their collaborative examination of America’s economic decay
Who I hired: Julianne Varacchi, senior photo editor, ESPN