Social Media Mistakes to Avoid for Interior Designers

Houzz.com - A Great Interior Design BlogIf you’re in the interior design industry, you should be using social media. It’s a great way to connect with current and potential clients, and get the word out about yourself without having to go door to door begging people to review your portfolio. What’s really great about social media for interior designers is that you don’t have to risk a lot of money to reap the benefits of adding it to your marketing mix. The risks associated with social media for interior designers have more to do with pitfalls that can occur if you don’t follow best practices with your social media campaign. This post will outline some of the risks that can be associated with social media for designers (and how you can avoid them!).

Unprofessional Blog: In this day and age, your website and blog are often the first look prospective clients have at you and your work. Your blog represents who you are and what your style is all about. As the saying goes, “you never get a second chance to make a first impression.” This is extremely true regarding your interior design blog. A blog that is poorly thought out, lacking images, and without a cohesive design theme can send the wrong message out to potential clients.  It is so important for your blog to be professional. This means, high quality images, stylish font, and a general theme that carries throughout the blog. Additionally, your blog should give consumers a general impression of your overall style. What’s your signature style? Traditional? Modern? Eclectic? Your blog should reinforce your design flavor to potential clients. And reflect your professionalism and creativity. If your blog causes people to question these points, you could lose out on a lot of potential business. So, bottom line – Make sure your blog is of A+ quality.

Unrealistic Expectations: Because social media allows for instant interaction practically anytime/any place, it can be easy for clients to have the expectation that you’re able to communicate with them 24/7. This can lead to you spending time communicating with clients, and less time actually working on their projects. Managing this aspect of social media will take some offline work. Make sure that you’re keeping realistic timeframes in perspective for your clients and managing the times you’re interacting with them online. You could be proactive and send clients quick thoughts on how their project is coming along using a social media app on your mobile phone. A quick “The new wall is up and we’re starting to paint! Offline until 3pm!” mobile message sent to a client via Google+ or Facebook chat could go a long way. While it’s great that social media gives clients the chance to reach out to you with ideas/questions/etc, it’s important to manage your social media communications with clients so that you’re engaging effectively, rather than wasting valuable creative/design time. If you spend an entire projects feeling rushed or distracted, the end result won’t be likely to make anyone very happy.

Not Using Social Media: This one may seem obvious, given the nature of this post, but it’s really worth noting what a huge mistake it is for any interior designer to NOT be using social media in 2013. Social media has so many great, visual networks (Pinterest, Instagram, YouTube) that instantly show consumers your excellent style and design technique. How else can you (virtually instantly) show your best work samples to thousands of potential customers? Not only does social media help build awareness, but it can also help you build or confirm a great reputation. Everyone looks online to learn more about professionals they may want to engage with. A word of mouth recommendation is likely to trigger a web search for your name and company. If you don’t have a strong web presence, that word of mouth recommendation may go no further than just a passing conversation. Lastly – Not engaging in social media is a huge mistake for interior designers, because practically all of your competitors ARE using social media. This means, their names and design ideas could be reaching thousands of potential customers per day, they could be generating great leads, and establishing themselves as authorities on design. Plus, a strong social media campaign can have SEO benefits, which could put your competitors ahead of you on search engines. Any way you slice it – the potential pitfalls of social media for interior designers are strongly outweighed by the risks of NOT using social media. So if you’re an interior designer who is on the fence about starting your social media campaign – get on it TODAY!

What are some of the major risks/pitfalls of social media you’ve experienced or seen? Leave a comment and let me know!

 

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Social Media in the Interior Design Industry

Social Media is a great resource for people in the Interior Design Industry. This really makes sense, as interior design is a visual art. Interior Design clients want to be inspired – to have new, exciting ideas triggered about beautifying their homes. Social Media and Interior Design are the perfect match, because designers can connect with prospective clients with visual ideas and inspiration. This post will focus on some of the cool ways interior designers are using social media to connect with consumers.Interior Designer on Social Media Networks

Blogs

Blogs are one of the major social media tools for interior designers. They give designers a chance to show off their best work and interact with potential clients in an informal manner. And they give consumers a chance to be inspired by new ideas and find a great local interior designer. Good interior design blogs are full of crisp, clear images of a designer’s interesting work, posts about the latest trends in the design industry, tips and ideas, links to other social media networks the designer is on and of course, contact information so interested clients can hire the designer.

Pinterest

With interior design being such a visual business, the highly visual social media network Pinterest is the perfect forum for interior designers to connect with potential clients. Visual images are such a powerful tool for interior designers. Images can convey the quality of a person’s work and a designer’s overall style and flavor, without saying a word.  Interior Designers are using Pinterest to showcase their best work, new ideas, and decorating tips/tricks they’ve picked up along the way. The best Interior Designer Pinterest pages take consumers on a visual journey of ideas and inspiration, giving prospective clients a flavor for their approach to design.

Instagram

Instagram is another extremely visual social networking website, where interior designers are sharing ideas and connecting with prospective clients on a very personal level. Interior Designers are posting everything from recent projects and new ideas/trends to pictures from their personal life (cute dogs! amazing vacations!) on the picture sharing Instagram and consumers seem to be loving it (proven by the THOUSANDS of Instagram followers the best designers on Instagram have). What’s really interesting about Instagram is how interior designers are sharing bits and pieces of their personal lives with consumers on this platform. This gives prospective clients a look at not only what a designer’s style is, but the kind of personality they could be working with if they were to hire the designer. A great working relationship is so important – Instagram gives interior designers a chance to show they not only can produce good work, but that they’re fun, creative people to work with.

YouTube

YouTube is an interesting resource for Interior Designers, because it gives them a chance to show their projects off in real time and it also allows prospective clients to get to know their personalities – and even to feel as though they already know them a bit. Effective Interior Design YouTube channels offer advice, tips/ideas, and showcases of projects completed by interior designers. Some designers even use a reality show format to engage with consumers and show them the behind the scenes aspects of interior design, which seems to be a great way to attract viewers (popular Interior Design YouTube channels have over 100K subscribers!) and show prospective clients their style and personality. Other interior designers produce detailed how-to and before/after videos that provide consumers with ideas, and that also showcase the designer’s work.

No matter which social networks interior designers choose to be active on, it’s clear that social media is a valuable tool in the Interior Design Industry. From the number of follows, likes, views, and comments on these various networks, it’s clear that consumers are eager to engage with interior designers via social media. Interior Designers and Home Decorators should examine the social media resources available to them and start building their SM presence today – prospective clients already are and so is the competition!

Stay tuned for next week’s post on interior designers and mobile applications.