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  • Writer's pictureRachel Sellick

The Importance of a Mailing List

Updated: Oct 28, 2022

As you may have seen, Scarlet River PR has set up a mailing list to keep you informed on all things happening within the Scarlet River camp. This idea led us to discuss the importance of a mailing list, how it can help artists/businesses and what content is best to use. I have been doing some research into this and found some great sites which answer the three burning questions I had.

What is a mailing list and why is it important?

Email provides a direct way to communicate with your fans and target audience. This is a more personalised way to reach people and ensure the content is being seen. As you may have already noticed, when you post on social media, you have to compete with algorithms and, depending on what time you post, heavy traffic. Posts may not always get seen, read or noticed. Unless you are willing to pay to boost your posts regularly or set up paid ads, you need to have another outlet to reach your audience.

Emails provide a solid foundation for promoting gigs and new releases, the more up to date and regular the emails the more likely they will grow and expand to boost music and merchandise sales.

For help and advice on how to set up a mailing list and the best email marketing company to use, check out this Ditto Music blog:

What should be on this mailing list?

People are very hesitant to give away email addresses due to data protection so you need to offer them something in exchange for receiving personal data about them. We have already discussed the importance of getting people onto your mailing list so what can you offer them that no-one else can?

Below are a few ideas but there are many, many more out there! Get creative and be unique….

Exclusive music

Now, everyone can listen to your music through many digital outlets so think outside of the box a little. Create a special acoustic version of your new single or record a set of unreleased songs nobody else has ever heard and use them to help promote your mailing list and draw people in.

Early access

In line with the exclusive music, offering early access is a big draw to most people. Offering a first listen to music, look at videos or written work, is a great way to engage with your audience and get them excited about a product or campaign. Give them an outlet to provide feedback too as this will come in handy for future works and emails.

Special events

People love special events! Either on-line or in person, people would love the chance to see you live and for it to be an exclusive subscribers only event?? You can bet they will be there! I have actually had the pleasure of being part of an exclusive when DisneyLife first came out. They were just about to release the new Jungle Book movie in 3D. I had first dibs on getting free tickets to see it before the release date the following week at my local cinema. It was an amazing experience and my family really enjoyed it. Now I'm not saying put on a few free concerts for all your subscribers as that’d be expensive, but little things like that get people noticed and stick in their minds. A really good ‘Free’ idea is to do an exclusive performance via YouTube, unlike social media livestreams, you can set up the stream as ‘unlisted’ and send the link to your email subscribers.


People love free stuff... they especially love contests. To hype up your mailing list you can offer a prize package and use a random generator to choose a winner. Prizes don’t have to be too in depth, it can be simple like a signed piece of merch, a Tee or even just a Zoom/Facetime session.

What are the Marketing benefits?

When researching the marketing benefits of a mailing list I came across this quote which I believe says it all really:

“Email lists might sound outdated, but they’re still one of the best tools to market your music."

This is because:

1. You own the list

Owning your data and your fan list is essential. With a mailing list, you own that database of fans for life. No matter which email service you use, you can always download that database and take it with you.

2. It’s the ultimate permission marketing

An email list is the ultimate in permission marketing. Once a fan gives you their email address, they’re telling you that they want to hear about your career! So be sure to tell them about your latest album, your next show, your new merchandise, etc.

3. Email is the most effective way to sell music & merch

“Email marketing is 40 times as effective as Facebook and Twitter, combined.”

When it comes to sales, mailing lists still get the best results. And this is true both inside and outside of the music industry. So for selling your music and merch, email is still the best way to turn fans into paying customers.

4. Email is the best way to stay in touch with fans long-term

“An email list is an artist’s retirement plan” – Emily White (Whitesmith Entertainment)

Social media sites come and go, but people rarely change their email address. So a mailing list is the best way to stay in touch with your fans over the long-term” (Source: TuneCore)

I have gone over the brief reasons why a mailing list is important to an artist, especially a growing artist but, I have also provided some links to other really good blogs which go into much more detail and highlight the best way to execute a mailing list. If this is something you are definitely interested in doing, do your research, see what will work best for you and the audience you are trying to get the attention of. Not everything will work so be patient and keep trying.

Don’t forget to sign up to the Scarlet River Management mailing list for all things Scarlet River including new releases, shows, and special guest information from our friends in the music industry!

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