Social media has changed the way people shop, and it’s a trend we’re noticing across all industries — including home decor and furnishings. Less frequently are home brands taking out expensive ads. Instead, they’re reaching out to influencers to do the promoting for them.
If this is an approach your brand is considering, there are a few best practices you should be aware of.
Each part of this series will take home brands through the ins and outs of influencer marketing, including:
- Influencer marketing best practices all home brands needs to know.
- Three home brands with effective influencer marketing strategies.
- Everything brands need to know about interior design influencers.
- Up-and-coming influencers we want designing our homes.
Let’s get to work.
Influencer Marketing Can Be Significantly More Cost-Effective Than Other Forms of Marketing and Advertising
According to Forbes, depending on a few factors, running a traditional ad in a magazine can cost as much as $500,000. That’s a lot of dough.
And let’s not pretend that creating the content is cheap in the first place. Home brands have to pay extra high costs to create content in-house. Renting studio space or a house to use to show off decor comes with a hefty price tag. It also limits the diversity of the content you get out of it.
Whether you outsource it to a third-party service or do it in-house, the process of creating high-quality photos of your products to use in your marketing and advertising efforts takes a lot of time and money.
Working with an influencer is completely different.
The material influencers create is inexpensive, scalable and can be repurposed and reused over and over again. Particularly if they create evergreen content for you, you could essentially use their photos across your social media, website, and email marketing indefinitely, eliminating the need for expensive photoshoots.
As opposed to needing to create the set-up yourself, influencers already have beautiful homes set up and ready for the next photo opportunity. You’ll get a wider variety of shots while keeping the costs down. They’re already thinking of every little detail that goes into an eye-catching photo. We asked style blogger Kristin Chambless what goes into capturing the perfect image, to which she said, “LOTS of behind the scenes work. Planning ahead, strategizing, location shooting, styling, lighting adjustments, props, florals, etc.
These are the things that influencers are experts on. With their help, you can focus on other aspects of marketing and advertising.
Look to Both Instagram and Pinterest to Increase Conversions and Sales
Pinning should be an Olympic sport, because when someone heads to Pinterest looking for home inspiration, they mean business. A whopping 83% of weekly Pinners said they’ve made purchases based on pins they saw (and that’s straight from the horse’s mouth).
Pinterest is especially instrumental when we’re talking about targeting the millennial crowd — you know, the biggest generation who’s also spending the most money. A report from Pinterest found that 63% of millennial users get on the platform to discover new brands and products to buy.
Start working with bloggers who can share your product on Pinterest. Then, take it a step further by creating Pinterests ads feature some of the influencer generated content.
Use Holidays and Other Time-Sensitive/Seasonal Events to Encourage Shopping
There’s a reason businesses look forward to Q4, and that’s because in some cases, this is where a good bulk of their yearly revenue comes from. For instance, during the holidays last year, we spent 4.1% more than we did in 2017.
But it’s not just the end-of-the-year holidays that are a big moneymaker.
In partnering with social media influencers, brands should also consider:
- The Fourth of July, Easter, Memorial Day, and other holidays.
- Special sporting events like Super Bowl Sunday.
- Summer vacation and back-to-school season.
While you might not get as much use out of this content as you would with evergreen material, partnering with influencers for time-sensitive occasions packs an extra special punch. You’re taking high-traffic events that are already getting tons of attention online and essentially riding their coattails.
Want to add even more incentive for people to shop with your home brand? This would be a great time to provide influencers with coupon codes to share with their audience.
Everyone needs sheets– work with a wide variety of influencers
Think items like mattresses and appliances — stuff everyone needs. Your approach is going to look different here, because your target audience is much bigger. It’s basically… everyone with a pulse.
Something else to consider? You’re going to need to get creative in making the ordinary look extraordinary. If you’re selling mattresses, a post that says, “Hey, here’s our mattress,” isn’t going to suffice.
For a good example of how to do this well, look at Part 3.
A good rule to live by is to market the experience, not the product. People don’t buy mattresses. They buy better sleep, comfort, and support.
84% of consumers make a purchase after reading about a product on a blog.
Blogging is great for brands whose products have higher price tags. As product prices increase, consumers are more likely to engage with multiple pieces of content and reviews before considering a purchase. For example, consumers read blogs like Sleepopolis to gather reviews before purchasing a mattress.
Consumers buy from people they trust. Because social media is saturated with sponsored posts, building trust with consumers is key, and successful bloggers have an established foundation of trust with their followers.
Influencers built a dedicated following and their blogs are a great source of website traffic, because bloggers can easily embed links to your site or product page. Plus, you’ll have an easy way to track and measure the traffic and sales that will start pouring in.
Try out a giveaway!
Freebies are an excellent way to draw attention to your brand. Who doesn’t like free stuff? Your influencers can promote giveaways to help you grow your email list, increase page likes and engagement, and accomplish a whole host of other objectives.
It’s not as simple as handing out free stuff, though — something a lot of brands don’t get.
The perceived value of the product needs to be high. Otherwise, you might not get as much participation as you’d like.
Giving away a free couch? Dining room table? Washer and dryer? Now we’re talking. The higher the perceived value, the greater the incentive will be for followers.
And remember, this isn’t just about getting likes on Instagram. Your social media should weave into your email marketing, and a cleverly crafted giveaway can get you thousands of new subscribers.