Build your design business with a powerful Houzz profile
Tuesday, January 20, 2015
If Houzz.com is going to work for you, you need to put some work into it. That's one of the takeaways from a new report issued by representatives of this social media platform that connects homeowners with design and building professionals.
The report — "Reputation Management: A Guidebook" — emphasizes the importance of presenting a complete profile that "builds your credibility" and "helps prospective clients understand how you differ from your competitors."
Spelling out in your profile the unique design services you offer, the types of clients you work with, your specialties and your affiliations can help set you apart, according to the report. So can information about your experience, accomplishments, awards, skills and education.
The report points out that including a profile photo of you or your team "helps build trust ... far more than a business logo could ever do."
Thousands of interior design professionals consider Houzz their principal social media channel for attracting clients. Those designers with the most extensive Houzz profiles report getting the most clients.
What else goes into an "extensive profile"?
Compelling keywords, for starters. Include those keywords (e.g., "luxury lofts," "contemporary kitchens," "Brooklyn rowhouses") in your bio and with your photos. The quality and quantity of your photos are vital, of course. Upload images to job-specific project folders ("New England Lighthouse B&B") and ideabooks ("Big Remodeling Ideas for Small Kitchens").
Stunning images can pave the way for free publicity, the best advertising that design professionals can't buy. The Houzz editorial department writes 20 or so articles per month, based on the images they see in ideabooks. And, more and more, traditional industry publications are featuring the work of designers whose work they find on Houzz.
Use your profile to get and stay connected. Include links to your website and social media platforms.
If, by the way, your current website isn't working and is proving to be more of a hindrance than a help, Houzz can help you develop a new one. The company offers free, mobile-optimized sites created from your Houzz profile content, such as your photos and client reviews.
Make sure your bio spells out your specialness (including your unique selling proposition). And keep it current, updating it with details about your latest and greatest projects and achievements. You'll also want to add glowing reviews in your profile. Houzz requires that you include at least three, but aim for many more than that.
Thinking you'd rather not go to all the trouble of hanging out at Houzz? Think again.
The statistics are staggering. Houzz has nearly 200 million monthly page views, by 6 million unique users. Nearly 90 percent of those users own homes, and those homes have an average value of $450,000.
Estimates are that 68 percent of homeowners go to Houzz when planning a new project. Houzz has become the go-to internal search engine for the design and home-building market.
You can have a significant presence in it, by having a powerful profile on it. An effective Houzz profile can bring a big boost to your business.
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