Figuring out your marketing strategy for interior design blogs isn’t always as easy as it should be. (This also applies to interior design social media.) As a former magazine editor in chief, nationally published interior design writer, and blogger, I assure you that you’re not alone! But at the 2016 Content Marketing World, roundtable experts agreed: When you produce content for marketing in any industry, your most important goal is to give your audience what it wants.
Translation for interior designers who are blogging and posting on social media: You need to understand, and satisfy, the true interests and questions that homeowners have. Because they are your potential clients online.
This applies whether you’re unknown or already a star designer. You can firmly establish yourself as a design authority, and continue to promote yourself as one, by telling readers exactly what they want to know.
But what exactly it is that?
Clearly there are a million topics you can write about. But, before you get bogged down in specifics, you need to think on a larger scale.
The guidelines I’ve come up with here will help you plan content ideas for your website, interior design blogs, and social media accounts. I’ve based these on my decades as a shelter magazine editor and writer, as well as a website producer whose interior design articles often rank on page 1 of Google searches.
Because if you’re going to produce content for marketing purposes, it should lead to actual results.
5 strategies for interior design blogs:
1. Homeowners love resources
What paint color did you use in that living room? Where did you find that sofa? Which are your favorite flea markets for finding unexpected treasures? Who are the best contractors you’ve worked with?
When I was a magazine editor, I learned that homeowners literally can’t get enough of resources. It saves them the time of researching. But more than that, it makes them feel good that a professional in the design industry has used the resource and likes it.
So you need to share, share, share these resources with readers when you produce content!!
If you’re reluctant to share, consider the alternative. You can hoard your favorite resources to yourself, just like a novelist who never shares his work with others because he’s afraid the work will be stolen. But, what’s the point in that? The end result is that people will simply see you as a person who’s unwilling to share. Period.
2. Homeowners love listicles
A listicle is a roundup of things. Those things could be ideas, stuff, anything goes. For example:
- Dining Room Table Centerpieces: 10 Ideas for Everyday
- Cozy Home Ideas from 15 Interior Designers
- “My 20 favorite design blogs”
- “7 things I always do at flea markets”
There’s a good reason why design editors milk the listicle for all its worth: Because homeowners can’t get enough of them!
As an interior designer producing content, don’t hesitate to make your own listicles. Realistically everyone knows that when you say “the 10 best” it’s generally your opinion, not a fact. Strong opinions are more dramatic and hence more exciting. They show you have confidence in your ideas and choices.
The listicle excites people’s interest! They’re curious to know what you chose and why.
3. Homeowners love videos
I know this one sounds like a no-brainer. But seriously: How many videos have you produced in the past year that are helping to promote you and your business?
Homeowners love videos so much they’re constantly searching for more. They go on platforms like YouTube desperately searching for ideas, answers, and entertainment.
The truth is: It’s easy for interior designers to find excuses not to make videos. Some of your reasons may be:
- You think your work isn’t ready to be shot on video
- You’re afraid of doing a bad job
- The video editing seems daunting.
Don’t let self-doubt or technology stand in your way.
Editing videos has become so easy. My 12-year-old daughter can edit a full video with amazing effects on her iPhone in 20 minutes. You can learn to do it using free or cheap software and apps. You don’t need to pay a professional video editor.
Videos are easy. Videos are fun. And people who watch videos are very loyal. If they like what you’re doing, they’ll come back for more.
4. Homeowners love step-by-step, DIY instructions
They not only love DIY instructions, they share DIY ideas like crazy on social media. Just check out the Facebook top shared “How To” articles from 2016!
Two of your main goals with content marketing are:
- to have homeowners, editors and bloggers see you as a design authority
- to attract potential clients.
So how does giving DIY advice help you with these goals? After all, your biggest goal is for people to pay you to do the designing for them. Why would you spill your insider secrets by telling them exactly how you decorated that living room bookcase, or how you renovated that basement? Won’t that make them think they don’t need you in order to get it done?
In some cases yes, but those people probably aren’t clients you’re really after anyhow. You’re not trying to get millions of clients, just a select group of the best.
The potential clients you want will see your DIY advice as a sign that you’re friendly, trustworthy, and talented. They will value you, and trust you, more because you’re willing to let them in on your secrets.
They will see you as a Very Helpful Designer—and when they need help with things that are beyond their scope, they will immediately think of you.
Or, if they’re people who can’t afford to hire you, they’ll seek out the book you wrote or your website for more.
Even the DIY-ers who may never become your clients can give you something in return: fame. And that fame will get you to your target clients.
5. Homeowners love budget ideas
You may be used to buying expensive, trade-only furnishings and materials. You know they’re the best quality and they add onto your fee, enabling you to earn more. Great.
But homeowners love knowing how they can achieve great decorating looks on a dime. So, share that with them and they’ll love you even more.
For example, you could tell people how to brighten up a room by adding inexpensive pillows and accessories. You get the idea.