Tag Archives: Social Media

NEW DESIGN TRENDS TO CAPTIVATE BUYERS IN 2018

Design trends are evolving at an ever-quickening pace thanks to design-oriented television and social media, and 2018 promises to bring even more excitement and innovation to the interior design scene. Here are some of my top picks:

Mixed Materials
Be prepared to see a vast assortment of mixed metals, integrated color combinations, the use of lush textures and continued personalization to transform a house to a completely personalized home.

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Looking for new employees? Find them on social media

If you need to add a new team member and fill a position before the end of the year, social media can help.

You already know how to work the platforms because you use them round the clock to market your business. More good news? You can find better talent quicker on social media.

Fifty-nine percent of recruiters say the candidates they discovered on social media are the “highest quality,” and employees hired on LinkedIn are 40 percent less likely to leave the company within the first six months. To top it off, 62 percent of organizations say recruiting on social decreases the time to fill the position.

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NEW DESIGN TRENDS TO CAPTIVATE BUYERS IN 2018

Design trends are evolving at an ever-quickening pace thanks to design-oriented television and social media, and 2018 promises to bring even more excitement and innovation to the interior design scene. Here are some of my top picks:

Mixed Materials
Be prepared to see a vast assortment of mixed metals, integrated color combinations, the use of lush textures and continued personalization to transform a house to a completely personalized home.

The Hygge trend shown here in FrontDoor Communities, embraces soft, clean lines to create comfortable surroundings.
Lita Dirks and Co. The Hygge trend shown here in FrontDoor Communities, embraces soft, clean lines to create comfortable surroundings.

A popular trend you’ll see in 2018 is the mixing of different materials in lamps, statement lighting, and accessories. Additionally, for a zen-like state of living taken from the Dutch, Hygge (pronounced “hue-guh”) is becoming very popular. This lifestyle design embraces clean, soft lines to create comfortable surroundings, helping buyers escape from the hectic, outside world.

Cozy textures such as knit cushions, faux throws, fluffy woolen rugs, worn wood and natural stone help homeowners take pleasure in their space and relax in a peaceful atmosphere. In addition to the more comfortable approach, pretty patterns are also making their mark. Soft lines, botanical prints and airy colors are becoming more favorable today than the geometric prints and strong patterns of yesterday.

And, finally, elements of global fusion are continuing to gain ground. Tribal, Asian, and artisan influences will be especially prevalent in 2018. Splashes of international wares add personality and flair.

Spaces That Sizzle

Spaces specifically used to entertain friends and family are more important than ever, like this wine center from the Taylor Morrison NEXTadventure home.
Lita Dirks and Co. Spaces specifically used to entertain friends and family are more important than ever, like this wine center from the Taylor Morrison NEXTadventure home.

With millennials and boomers alike, we’re finding that experiences are driving space planning and design more than ever. As an example, with entertaining friends and family so important to these buyers, beverage bars, wine centers, and functional kitchen islands are more essential than ever. Also, designated tech-free spaces, disappearing appliances and thoughtfully designed storage spaces will be moving up the buyer’s wish list.

A Mix of Materials
Materials will make a bold statement in 2018 as we see an influx of backsplashes offered in graphic shapes, as well as iridescent, metallic and pearlized finishes. In terms of flooring, bigger is better. Large format wood (or wood-look) planks and tile help create an expansive and impressive space and assist in the ease of maintenance. Taking center stage in furnishings and accessories are deep and lush textures. Mixing velvets with fringe, fur or kilim bring warmth and personality to any space.

Colors Continue to Change

Deep purple creates an enticing and rich atmosphere that is sure to impress, shown in a Forum Real Estate Group home.
Lita Dirks and Co. Deep purple creates an enticing and rich atmosphere that is sure to impress, shown in a Forum Real Estate Group home.

Depending on the style preferences of your buyers, these color combinations will speak to an array of personalities. Warm neutrals, including taupe-tinted grays, are becoming increasingly popular for those who see home as a calming escape. For the dramatic buyer who prefers statements, deep exotic hues are on trend in 2018. Covering a wall in a deep purple, hunter green or rich navy tone creates an enticing and rich atmosphere that is sure to impress.

A modernized black, like this used in Beechwood Homes, is the most daring and fearless color trend of 2018.
Lita Dirks and Co. A modernized black, like this used in Beechwood Homes, is the most daring and fearless color trend of 2018.

If your buyer is looking to add energy to their space, bright and vivid color pallets are also completely on trend. Luminous hues such a “Millennial Pink” and “Gen-Z Yellow” are timeless but also very “now” as buyers embrace our visual culture more than ever.

Black is Back
Lastly, black is back, big time. A modernized black is the most daring and fearless color trend of 2018. With PPG paints naming “Black Flame” as their color of the year, and Glidden Paints naming “Deep Onyx,” black is a timeless staple that delivers a high level of sophistication to any space. Buyers wanting to make their space look expensive and sexy can turn to black to attain this objective.

Completing a space that your buyers feel comfortable in and love is the end goal now and in the future! When used thoughtfully, these trends can certainly help stimulate your buyer and help them visualize their new dream home. Therefore, keeping apprised of trends shows buyers that you are aware of what’s important to them, ultimately resulting in a very happy buyer.

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2017’s top social media marketing lessons

In a year, much has changed on social media networks. Facebook spent much of 2017 revamping its Trending section to squelch fake news. Instagram fared much better — as the company continued to celebrate the success of Instagram Stories (and the decline of Snapchat).

As you’re planning for 2018, dedicate time to analyze your own brand’s social strategy and see the changes for yourself. While you’re at it, keep in mind these 2017 social media marketing trends that show no sign of slowing down.

1. Organic reach continues to plummet for brands and publishers on Facebook

After analyzing 880 million Facebook posts, the average engagement rate for brands and publishers has dropped 20 percent in 2017. That impact is compounded because SocialFlow research found the overall reach per post from January through May of 2016 was 42 percent less than 2015. Yikes.

If that wasn’t bad enough, Facebook did a test and moved all non-ad posts from Pages in the News Feed to Facebook’s new Explore feed in six countries. As you would guess, Pages received four times less engagement and lost up to 75 percent of their reach.

Companies are having to spend more and more to reach their core audience on Facebook. Keep that in mind as you plan for 2018.

2. Images and videos, coupled with fewer words, continue to reign (except on Twitter).

While engagement with links and images suffered the most this year on Facebook, video engagement held strong. Videos on Facebook now have, on average, double the engagement rate of other content types.

To optimize interactions, post videos between 60 and 90 seconds — or broadcast 15-minute live videos.

As visual continues to dominate social, Facebook posts at or below 50 characters have the most engagement. But Twitter has challenged that trend. This year, Twitter expanded their character count from 140 to 280.

3. Raw, authentic video and content, like Instagram Stories, win.

Instagram Stories have been the runaway hit of 2017. Launched in August of 2016, Instagram Stories had more than 250 million daily active users as of August 2017. Those under the age of 25 spend more than 32 minutes per day on Instagram, on average, while those 25 and older spend more than 24 minutes daily.

In short, Stories has become the reason to use Instagram. That’s why 50 percent of businesses have now created a story. Often, the unedited content that captures real-life outperforms the pristine photos uploaded to Instagram itself.

In 2018, budget more time to create Stories like these that are proven to perform. They’re what your audience most wants! Plus, Instagram Stories will continue to become a bigger player in 2018.

4. Be transparent about paid promotions and brand sponsorships on social media.

While less fun than the other trends, this is a major lesson for brands this year and in 2018.

The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) sent out nearly 100 warning letters to celebrities, cracking down on their social media endorsement policy. The policy states that if there is a “material connection an endorser and an advertiser, that connection should be clearly and conspicuously disclosed.”

Encourage those in your influencer marketing programs to follow FTC recommendations, which means including clear tags like #sponsored or #ad in the first three lines of copy while avoiding ambiguous tags like #sp or #thankyou altogether. Or use this intuitive Instagram feature, which adds a paid partnership tag to posts.

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You have what the media needs: expertise

As a business professional, you have information and insights about your industry that writers and broadcasters are looking for all the time. You can — and will — get quoted and promoted in online and conventional trade media if you connect with the right people, the right way.
Step 1 in that process is to create a media “hit list” of those online, print and broadcast outlets that reach out to your best prospects. Develop a database of bloggers, reporters, editors, TV and video producers, and others who follow your industry. Inform them that you are happy to help any time they’re looking for information or an interview resource.
After you get in touch, stay in touch: Update them regularly on what’s now, what’s news, what’s in, what’s out, what’s hot and what’s not.
It’s a win-win relationship. It enables you to get quoted and featured in strategic media outlets. And it provides journalists and others with access to an invaluable industry authority: you. The media needs you and your industry insights to lend credibility to their shows, articles and posts, as much as you need them to help promote yourself and your company.
Meanwhile, you can easily increase the visibility for your company and yourself by submitting media releases. Every time you reach a milestone (e.g., 10th year in business), win an award, host or speak at an event, launch a new product or service, add staff, sign a major new client, etc., that’s news. It’s the kind of news that online and traditional media will run on a regular basis.
Writing articles, columns and blog posts is an excellent way for professionals to establish their expertise and differentiate themselves from competitors.
Consider the challenges of an industry podcast producer, editor at a local newspaper or an industry blogger. Every week they have to come up with relevant material to fill time and space. That’s where you, as the industry expert, come in.
You need not be a Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist to develop content for the media. The key is to be able to share tips, trends and techniques in an interesting, nontechnical way, and to address the biggest changes or challenges or hottest innovations in your industry.
Timing is everything: The more you can relate your information to stories in the news today — such as a seasonal event or the recent heat wave or a downturn in the local economy — the better your chances of getting your story published or aired.
One advantage of articles over social media is their shelf life. While a tweet may disappear within seconds, a column or blog post has a much more lasting impact. A prospect may come across your article and contact you days, months or even years after you created it.
In addition, articles by or about you lend you far more credibility than paid advertisements or commercials. Business owners can save a great deal of money and gain more visibility by focusing their marketing efforts on developing content for, rather than advertising in the media.
Free publicity is the best advertising that business professionals can’t buy. Getting quoted and promoted in the media is one of the best ways to make a big splash for little cash.

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Create a brand personality people fall in love with on social

Want more likes, followers and engagement on your company’s social media pages? Then, you need three things: gorgeous (on-brand) pictures, the right personality and an eagerness to socialize.
In short, you need to cultivate a strategic brand personality and then bring it to life by connecting with your followers.

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9 Ways to Make Pinterest Work for Your Design Business

Pinterest is an important tool in the design community. From sourcing and organizing product to being discovered by new clients, there are plenty of positive uses for this social network. Here are 9 ways to help Pinterest work for your business.

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