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How Houzz plus Pinterest can get picky clients off of the fence

When discerning clients begin the house hunt, a Realtor equipped with Houzz and Pinterest can get clients focused and off of the fence, and it is quite a bit easier than you might think!

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House eye candy – not just for you

I have to admit. This may get a little saucy for some of you. Who else has difficulty pulling a perfect description of what your client is looking for your of them while they are trying to describe their ideal home? Yeah, it isn’t always easy. Most of our clients, unless they are architects or designers or glued to HGTV (heaven forbid) would know what true Cape Cod is or what the difference is between a Federal and a Colonial style home, which is why, when a couple of weeks ago, when I was talking with an architect friend of mine and he asked me if I had been using Houzz.com, I asked him to repeat himself, because I had heard of it but hadn’t even visited the site, so I immediately got excited.

He whipped out his iPad and showed me; I blushed a bit. It was quite impressive. It was like house porn. Houzz.com… really??? Where have you been my whole real estate career?! I mean, seriously! You can’t stop looking at these gorgeous, angled, sumptuous, curvy, shapely, sexy… ahem… homes, kitchens, gardens and well, all things design.

The best way to describe Houzz.com is that it is like a virtual gallery of images posted by architects, interior designers and builders who are hoping to get feedback and potential business from their featured imagery. The great thing about Houzz.com is that it is like Pinterest, only for all things related to home design- from fixtures to finishes and everything in between and they will also feature great articles about home design (which I love). It is perfect for people who are looking to design a new home, or who are looking to update what they already have. Simply put, house eye-candy.

Applying this to your clients

Then I started thinking… and we all know how this can be dangerous – and I even have a friend who made a shirt for me that says “I think in cartoon.” ‘Tis true. My thought was this: Houzz.com can be wonderful when assigned as “homework” for the client who needs some guidance in the ways of pinpointing the styles that they like.

Get your client to go home – or better yet, sit down with them so you can hear their feedback about why they are picking each image that they find alluring- check out the website and start an idea book. You could even get your client to start a Pinterest board titled “Ideal Home” or they can just email the image straight to you and you can archive it for your individual client.

Some interior designers use this idea-tion process of “client homework” by telling their clients to pull images from their favorite magazines such as Elle Decor or House Beautiful, but this is so much more easily accessible- for everyone involved! This is like my new best friend in the house hunt for the picky client (and it can totally be yours too)! Hooray! It was a virtual high-five moment for me, figuring out how to integrate all of these awesome new sites and tools that we have at our fingertips.

Now that we have all of these tools and everyone is all excited about using Pinterest and if you haven’t been utilizing Houzz.com, you totally can for your clients who didn’t know how to articulate to you what they love and lust after in terms of their ideal home, now you can pull it out of them through the sexy photos and have them share these with you as their own design boards.

You no longer have to be clueless or “back to the drawing board” when it comes to deciphering what it is they are seeking in their perfect home! You can see the what they are drawn to and pull from that. Now that is pretty sexy, isn’t it?

Genevieve Concannon is one of those multifaceted individuals who brings business savvy, creativity and conscientiousness to the table in real estate and social media.  Genevieve takes marketing and sustainability in a fresh direction- cultivating some fun and funky grass roots branding and marketing strategies that set her and Arbour Realtyapart from the masses. Always herself and ready to help others understand sustainability in building a home or a business, Genevieve brings a new way to look at marketing yourself in the world of real estate and green building- because she's lived it and breathed it and played in the sand piles with the big-boys.  If you weren't aware, Genevieve is a sustainability nerd, a ghost writer and the event hostess with the mostess in NoVa. 

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39 Comments

39 Comments

  1. Creative Removable Wall Decals

    April 5, 2012 at 11:19 pm

    I was looking for how to use houzz.com for business advertising and I stumbled upon your website. Definitely a good idea to combine both houzz and pinterest. I didn’t know that houzz is so useful in real estate sector, I will apply the same concept to my business. Thanks for such a great article!

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Social Media

Tag photos, connect with friends, order food?

(SOCIAL MEDIA) Facebook seems to be sprawling into every nook and cranny of life and now, they’re infiltrating food delivery.

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Facebook is now bringing you food! Although, no one was really asking them to.

In the age of Instagram and Snapchat, Facebook is attempting to transform into more than just a social media platform. They have partnered up with food delivery services to help users order food directly from their site.

They hope to streamline the process by giving users a chance to research, get recommendations and order food without ever leaving the site.

Facebook has partnered with their existing delivery services including EatStreet, Delivery.com, DoorDash, ChowNow and Olo in addition to restaurants to fast track the process.

The scenario they imagine is that while scrolling through the newsfeed, users would feel an urge to eat and look to Facebook for their options.

After chatting up friends via Facebook Messenger to ask for the best place to go, users would visit the restaurant’s page directly, explore their menu and decide to order. When ordering, you will have the option to use one of the partnered delivery services either with an existing account or by creating a new one.

The benefit is you stay on one site the entire time. With the time you save, the food can get to you faster, which is a plus for everyone.

Assuming that people already live on Facebook 24/7, this seems like a great update. If you like getting recommendations from your favorite social media resources, it’s even better.

The problem is that in recent years their younger audiences have dropped off in favor of other sites. Regardless of what they think, not everyone is flocking to Facebook for their every need.

My guess is that this service will benefit those already using Facebook, but is less likely to draw new audiences in.

Adding more services may not be the key to success if Facebook can’t refine their other features. They have already been criticized for their ad reporting practices, though they seem to fix everything with a new algorithm.

Facebook has continued to stray away from their original intent, and food delivery won’t be their last update.

Facebook wants to be everything, but not everyone may want the same.

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Hate Facebook’s mid-roll ads? So does everyone else

(SOCIAL MEDIA) Those pesky ads that pop up in the middle of that Facebook video, aka mid-roll, seem to be grinding everyone’s gears.

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mid-roll

In an ongoing effort to monetize content, Facebook recently introduced “mid-roll” ads into videos by certain publishers, and it has now been testing that format for six months. If you aren’t a big fan of those ads interrupting your content consumption experience, you aren’t alone; publishers aren’t crazy about them either.

In a report on the program, five publishers working with Facebook’s new mid-roll ad program were sourced and all five publishers found that the program wasn’t generating the expected revenue.

One program partner made as little as $500 dollars with mid-roll ads while generating tens of millions of views on their content.

Two other partners wouldn’t specify exact revenue number, but they did acknowledge that the ad performance is below expectations. As far as cost goes, certain publishers mentioned CPMs between 15 cents and 75 cents.

That range is large because a lot of the data isn’t clear enough to evaluate their return on investment. According to the Digiday report, publishers receive data on total revenue, along with raw data on things like the number of videos that served an ad to viewers.

The lack of certain data points, along with the confusing structure of the data, makes it difficult to assess the number of monetized views and the revenue by video. For context, YouTube, as arguably the biggest player in video monetization, provides all these metrics.

Another issue is that licensing deals are cutting into margins. Facebook pays publishers, via a licensing fee, to produce and publish a certain number of videos each month. In exchange, Facebook keeps all money until it recoups the fee, after which revenue is split 55/45 between the publisher and Facebook.

While these challenges doesn’t change the fact that revenue is low, it does make it difficult to dissect costs in a meaningful way.

Why is revenue so low to begin with?

For starters, a newsfeed with enough content to feed an infinite scroll probably isn’t the best format for these kinds of ads. As a user, when I’m watching the videos and the ad interrupts the experience, I’ve always scrolled right on through to the next item on my feed. It’s a sentiment echoed by one of the publishers in the Digiday story.

Because of that, Facebook’s new Watch program, which creates a content exclusivity not found on the news feed, might produce better results in the future. Either way, Facebook will need to solve this revenue challenge for publishers, or they might pull out of the programs altogether.

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Will Facebook’s Bonfire be a hit or go up in flames?

(SOCIAL MEDIA) Facebook secretly launched a group chat app that they secretly copied from a super small company. Lots of secrets.

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bonfire facebook

As we well know, big social media and social messaging companies have a tendency to rip each other off. We’ve seen Instagram rip off Snapchat, another big player in the space.

However, what happens when a big player copies a young upstart?

Facebook appears to be doing just that. The social media giant announced a standalone group video chat app called Bonfire in July of this year. After testing, that app is now available in the Denmark App Store.

“Bonfire bears a striking resemblance to Houseparty.”

Both apps enable multi-party video chatting, complete with video effect filters (much like Snapchat). Facebook has their app synced with the Messenger feature to let potential participants know when they’ve been added to a chat. Bonfire also lets you capture snapshots of the video chat.

So, why does Facebook want to copy this startup so badly? Because the concept is a hit.

Back in 2016, Houseparty was the 7th highest ranking free app in Apple’s App store. Additionally, the app has been shown averaging a million downloads in the last 6 months. Facebook is in the business of building community, per their mission statement, and this concept is a growing epicenter of social community and interaction.

That also makes Houseparty and Bonfire a great tool for reaching a younger consumer audience more directly.

While a live event on Facebook or Instagram makes for a great general broadcast, these apps could be a great way to offer exclusive experiences to certain customers.

Imagine, if you will, the thrill of 6 fans winning a content to have a private show streamed to them by their favorite artist, followed by a Q+A session? Or, imagine a pop culture brand like The AV Club hosting an interactive discussion with fans dissecting the latest episode of Game of Thrones?

If those examples feel a little too big for you, then imagine a group of restaurant employees hosting a live discussion in several different chat rooms soliciting feedback on all parts of the experience?

The bigger point is, that level of intimacy and exclusivity works well on this platform.

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