Designers: What to blog about

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OK so you’ve decided to raise your business profile by blogging at least weekly. It will boost your brand awareness in your customers’ eyes and also, eventually, help your position in the results of google searches.

Unfortunately after a few weeks you run out of things to write.

So…

DESIGNERS: “WHAT DO I BLOG ABOUT?”

Let’s go.

1. Original content. Whatever it is it MUST be original. If you copy articles or republish them Google ‘knows’ that. It won’t help you one jot in your position in search results.  It might be of some benefit to your readership though but why not just post the link to the information preceded by your professional opinion about what is in the link and why is worth visiting? Add value, don’t plagiarise.

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Click To Read More Interior Design Articles

2. Apple iPHONES? So many people blog about technology and how wonderful it is. Perhaps, I would suggest, many of those conversations don’t get far over the dinner table or at parties. Why? Mainly because they are of limited interest. And, let’s face it, those discussing technology just use the technology they don’t actually invent the darn thing! HOWEVER you design amazing interiors for houses. That’s interesting to many people, they live in them funnily enough, it is an area that is very interesting to many people. So talk about your job, its one of the few jobs that people envy and are interested in. Don’t be embarrassed!

3. So blog about your last job. More importantly make your last job into several blog posts. Focus on specific aspects of about 200-300 words for each post. Talk about; products, services your approach to the project, what your client thought, how good certain contractors were. Honestly you could go on for a few months based on one project alone (remember short posts with images ideally).

4. Talk about design in general. What’s good, what’s not. And I want to hear YOUR GENUINE opinion please, not a re-hashed version of something that someone told you was “cutting edge design”. True originality and creativity is rare -people with money want to buy that (oh yes, that’s right they are your potential customers).

5. Trends. At the turn of the year I found VERY few designers talking about trends for the year ahead. And many of them were just rehashing colour trends produced by paint maker Farrow and Ball (or whoever it was). YAWN. So who is one of the most sought after media-savvy interior designers in the UK…Kelly Hoppen. Look here, she gives her professional opinion on the year ahead and writes in an engaging way. Trends are one of the easiest things to write about and few of you (with notable exceptions)  did it. Great job Kelly!

6. PLEASE think about your readers. Do NOT write something that will be of interest to all your staff. Why? They are not your customers. Write about something that your customers might be interested in. So we, KOTHEA, sell great fabrics to interior designers but I don’t tend to talk about that. I talk in this blog about stuff that might help you make more money (eventually) by doing better business. Eventually KOTHEA will stick in your brain and you will buy some of our fabrics!

 

Designers: What to Twitter / Tweet About

It's Me Again
It’s Me Again (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Really, I’m not interested in what you had for breakfast, nor what the weather is. If you want to be followed by people who are not decision makers then ‘your breakfast’ or ‘which train you are currently on’ is a great thing to Tweet about. But that’s not what you want is it?

So…

1. Automatically Tweet your blog posts once a week – that’s a great way to start. If  you use a WordPress hosted blog (like this one) it’s just a case of ticking a box and you are done.

Or

2. Every day just go through your suppliers. As a designer you have lots of them. Tweet a compliment about a DESIGN RELATED supplier &/or one of their products/services.

Or

3. Maybe tweet a promotion

Remember

4. Tweets are eventually deleted from the net. So you don’t have to worry about keywords too much. If you are writing a blog post then that post will be permanent and the keywords in it are important. So with your Tweets just keep it simple, interesting and professional. Think “interesting narrative”.

But would you…

5. Tweet about your competitors? Sure if you want to help publicize their work (??) and sure if they reciprocate and Tweet back.

Spying On Competitors – Staying Ahead

It’s a bit negative really isn’t it? I mean spying on your competitors implies they are better than you and you are devoting time just to play catch up. Or you could turn it around and say that by employing ALL the industry best practice from all your competitors you will be ahead of almost all of them! Depends how you see it.

This article considers a few easy ways to ethically get more information on your competitors and then show you how to easily integrate all that information into your web browser so it’s there to use on an ongoing basis whenever you have time in the future. Fantastic long term investment merely for investing your time.

We look at:

  1. Google Alerts;
  2. Competitor News Feeds;
  3. Industry News Feeds; and then finish by
  4. Putting it all together in one place using Netvibes.
Click To Read More Interior Design Articles
Click To Read More Interior Design Articles

Skip to the end of the article if you want the URL for the example created.

Let’s create a real life example by pretending that we are a Hotel/Hospitality focussed interior design and architecture practice. Now, I’ve only been to LA once so with my very minimal internet research I’ll pretend further that my main local competitor is Ralph Gentile Architects (www.rgastudio.com) – I don’t know this company  and  they seem to be in the hotel interior design industry. Also we will look at WATG (www.watg.com) who are a leading design consultant for the global hospitality market. Continue reading “Spying On Competitors – Staying Ahead”