For almost a decade, interior designers have been creating awe-inspiring design spaces on social media, but building viewer numbers can often seem like a never-ending battle.🤦 For some designers, they do not find it necessary to grow their social media accounts, because the time and effort invested in building social media is not financially compensated. But what if we tell you it is possible to start monetizing your social media accounts if done right? 👀
In this article, we will dive into how interior designers have successfully adapted with social media and started monetizing their platform. We will answer the seven most frequently asked questions:
Where do I start? First, pick a platform where you want to grow your community. Instagram, Pinterest, and YouTube are popular places to start. This is where most of your potential clients will be searching for design inspiration. Next, focus on providing value to your audience. That’s where topic selection is key. We’ve found that explainer videos generate the most return for your time invested. They attract 95% of online consumers, who love to watch them learn more about relevant products or services (Qualtrics, 2020).
Which video content topics should I create content for? Your audience follows you because they are home enthusiasts. Not only do they want to be entertained, they always want to learn more experts like you, the nuggets of tips about home decor and home renovation. Jane from Jane Lockhart Design is a prime example. She creates weekly IGTV videos showcasing her design work, as well as her responses to viewer-submitted questions. She has a series called "Jane Talks", where she takes her audience through a series of interior design and home furnishing related topics. Her account has more than 43K followers and is growing quickly through video content and collaborations she’s secured.
How can I build an engaged audience on Instagram?The key to building an engaged audience is transparency. Many interior designers inspire their audience and create deeper engagement by being transparent about the vendors she works with in her interior design projects. When your followers know that you actively listen to them and interact with them, they will do the same! An excellent way to interact with your audience is by setting a time to go Instagram Live, and answering their questions in real-time. This helps your audience get to know you as a professional and individual.
A great example is Rebecca from Rebecca Hay Design. She not only has her interior design business, she also started mentoring others doing the same by starting her Momentum Marketing Course, hosting monthly designer meetups in Toronto, starting her podcast, Resilient by Design. If you follow her, you might notice her hopping on Instagram Live to answer any questions her followers have for her!
Does it have to be video content?The short answer is: no, it does not have to be, but it is strongly recommended. In search of authenticity and transparency, viewers have turned to video. Between Instagram Stories, IGTV, Reels, TikTok, and now Story Pins by Pinterest and Shorts by Youtube, it’s safe to say that video content is here to stay. All the social media platform's algorithm prioritizes video content. If you noticed your recent Instagram post is not getting as many likes as before, that's because the post is not reaching enough people. The organic growth is really in the video content game. These are some of our favorite accounts that produce great video content daily or weekly: Kyla from Hose of Hipster (@houseofhipstersblog), Kristy (@kristywicks), April Tomlin Interiors (@apriltomlininteriors) and Mindy Gayer Design (@mindygayerdeisgn).
Does it need to look professional? Not at all! A smart phone is all you need.📱 Today, most of us have phones so advanced they can serve as our videographers. You can purchase tools like a stabilizer or selfie-stick to help create videos. People love this type of raw, unpolished content. As an interior designer, people look to you for thought leadership in the home furnishing industry. If you can show off your work in action in your home or your clients’ spaces (with permission, of course), that will help showcase your credibility.
Tiffany Leigh from Tiffany Leigh Design is an excellent example for this. Her recently backyard renovation in partnership with Hauser Furntiure, Annike Carpet, and Hardware Canada is a great example of how it doesn't have to be. You can also check our interview with Tiffany here on how she successfully grew her interior design business to 35K+ followers in two years, earns passive income from her AirBnb cottage, and also launched her own vintage store, TLD Curated.
How do I optimize my video content? To get the maximum result from your content, it should be distributed across all your social media channels. Here’s how each platform can help your business grow:
Many people forget that YouTube is a search engine! Videos posted on YouTube are great for SEO optimization and increase your chances of getting discovered by potential customers. 8 out of 10 videos that appear in Google results are from YouTube. Here are some designers who have successfully picked up YouTube to grow their interior design business: Nina Takesh (67.3K+ subscribers), Arvin Olano (267K+ subscribers), and Love Create Celebrate (47.7K+ subscribers).
Pinterest is the first place many people visit when looking for home inspiration, so it’s an especially smart choice for interior designers like yourself to post your content on Pinterest. If you build enough followers like Casey Keasler (1.8M+), madaboutthehouse (240K+), or Athena Calderone (74.8K+), you can start charging brands cross platform promotional fees.
Instagram is your digital portfolio. Your feed is a fantastic representation of your brand’s visual identity, and Instagram remains the best social media channel to give your audience a glimpse into both your personal and professional life.
How can I get sponsored for doing content? When you’re seeking to get sponsored for doing content, the most important thing you can do is outreach! If you love a brand and use it often in your work, reach out and leverage the connection to suggest an interior design collaboration. Jane did this recently, and her collaboration with MYOH was the success. We wrote a blog breaking down the detail of the collaboration. Check it out here: Jane Lockhart Design X MYOH Collaboration results
In conclusionRegardless of your stature within the industry, it takes tremendous amount of time to negotiate brand collaborations. If you are looking for hassle-free collaboration management? Give Giden a try today! Apply to be part of our vetted creator network. 💃
Giden's mission is to help interior designers get paid to create authentic content your audience will love. We make it super easy for you to collaborate with DTC & Trade brands, manufacturers, and online retailers in the home furnishing industry.