With hundreds of different social media platforms, it can be extremely difficult to know which ones to use.
Then on top of that, knowing which ones to concentrate on to maximise the return on your efforts can be almost impossible.
For interior designers, the platforms you should look to use are:
So, if you are on any others, stop. Close your accounts and make sure you have the accounts for those five set up, and complete your profile as much as you can.
Before we go into the actionable tactics to improve your social media presence, it is vital that you know that 90% of the interior design industry is all about imagery – fortunately (if you are a good interior designer) these won’t be hard for you to get access to.
I have personally tried and tested all these tactics and shown improved performance as a direct result.
1. Fill Out Your Profile FULLY
It may sound obvious, and it should literally be the first thing you do when setting up your social media accounts. However more and more I see it being forgotten, people not filling out their profiles in full or setting them up and forgetting to ever update them again.
It doesn’t take long to fill out the different sections, you know your business so should take no longer than an hour to fill out or update your social account profiles.
Some platforms like Twitter, Instagram and Pinterest only have a short bio section – so you need to make what you say really count!
Both Facebook and Houzz allow for multiple sections to be filled out to maximise the potential power of your profile/page. Make sure you fill it out as much as possible – this way when potential clients are researching you they can tell you are a legit business and be more likely to use your services.
2. Follow/Like Other Accounts
This will always be one of the best methods of getting yourself more followers.
If you have a fully filled out profile and posting schedule, sharing great content, then you will be primed to use this tactic.
Following other interior designers, bloggers, or people passionate about interior design will likely make it pop up to them that you have followed them, this often will result in them checking out your profile and if they like what they see will often follow you back.
Use a tool like Followerwonk to find accounts with an interest in interior design (Pro Tip: Use this link to find Twitter accounts interested in interior design) You can find Instagram accounts by searching for people using the hashtag #InteriorDesign.
Note: Please don’t use automated tools to bulk follow and unfollow people to get more followers, you will likely only end up annoying potential followers by continually following and unfollowing people – as well as potentially getting your account banned.
3. Add Your Social Media Accounts to Your Welcome Email
If you are growing your email list (and as a business with an online presence you definitely should be) you should be sending a welcome email (or series) to your new subscribers.
This welcome series of emails is a great place to entice your email subscribers to follow your social accounts, these are prime people who are very likely to want to follow you on your social platforms as they have already shown intent of liking your business by joining your email list.
There is no excuse for not having this automation set up as it can be done completely free for up to 2000 people on your email list using Mailchimp.
Extra Reading: Welcome Emails: Your Indispensable First Impression
4. Run a Giveaway
Running a giveaway is a great way to reach new audiences, grow your social following and engage your existing audience. There are some really cool apps such as Rafflecopter, Gleam or Kingsumo Giveaways which can be used not only to boost your social presence but also to grow your email list.
The tools offer multiple options for entry methods, make sure you focus on the channel you want to grow the most so you don’t spread it too thinly.
If you are struggling for a prize, reach out to a homeware brand and offer them coverage on your site (via the giveaway) in return for a prize contribution – you’d be surprised how often brands are receptive for this as they get exposure without having to do much work.
5. Get a HelloBar
HelloBar is a great little tool for adding a call to action on your site to direct traffic to a certain place. It can be via a ribbon at the top of your site, a pop-up or a slider – they can display the social profile on your choice that you wish your audience to follow.
Try rotating the social media platform every few weeks to grow your following across all of your accounts.
6. Add a ‘Follow Me’ Link into Your Email Signature
A very simple, yet often overlooked tactic to grow your social media following is to add a message in your email signature that specifically requests the recipient to go follow you on that social platform.
Having this link in your constantly used email signature makes it easy to attract more followers as you are going about your everyday emailing duties – growing your social media following on autopilot.
Extra Reading: What Does the Perfect Email Signature Look Like in 2018?
7. Ask Questions
Engagement can be tricky on many social platforms, Facebook seems to be doing their best to make Facebook pages obsolete unless you pay for adverts. However, there are still some people absolutely rocking it on Facebook and other platforms by frequently asking questions on their followers.
Asking questions to your audience on all platforms is great for keeping them engaged and increases your potential reach, you can do this on every channel – sometimes through just text, but if you add an image to your question post your engagement will increase even further.
Extra Reading: These Questions Will Boost Your Social Media Engagement
8. Invite your Friends to like your page
Another mega-simple tactic – often neglected. You might not think your friends would care about your business or your Facebook page but you’ll find they are often your first fans. They would support you and your business and wish you all the success and often do anything to help make it a success for you. The worst that could happen is they don’t like your page – give it a go!
Extra Reading: How to invite people to Like Your Facebook Business Page
9. Pay to promote your Account
It’s not really the best use of your marketing dollars, however, if you are hell-bent on growing your social media following – most platforms make it easy to ‘buy’ followers legitimately by promoting your account towards a targeted set of people or interests.
If you want to accelerate your followers and have a little budget to play with then paying for them by using Facebook “promote” is worth doing. You can get relevant likes from as little as £0.05p per like and these can be highly targeted to the audience you want to have on your Facebook page.
10. Share for Share (S4S)
Share for share has been around for years, and has worked across most social channels in the past. Right now, it’s working best on Instagram. It’s simple in context, you team up with a similarly sized account with a relevant audience (this could be another interior designer but in a different location so not competitors, or another local business that would have a similar audience to you).
You both share each others account on a post, encouraging your followers to follow the other person. A little warning, don’t do this too frequently or you’ll disengage your own followers and probably end up losing more than you gain – aim for no more than one S4S every 5-7 posts maximum.
Extra Reading: How to Rapidly Grow Your Instagram Following
11. Comment on other pages as your page
This is a great way to expose your account more to your target audience. Make sure to participate on other pages where your audience is already having conversations. Find complementary Facebook pages and like them as your page, then watch your home feed and comment on the posts that are relevant to your blog.
This tactic works best on Pinterest as commenting is not very common on the platform, comment on relevant pins, ask questions and make sure to keep your interaction authentic.
Extra Reading: Tactics to Help You Get More Instagram Followers Today
12. Join Group Boards
Joining group boards is a great way to get your pins (and therefore your profile) more widely known. Find group boards on your blog/business area, check the requirements and then see if you can join.
Jen Stanbrook of Love Chic Living has a great Love Home Bloggers board with a lot of followers and contributors that could be a great place for you to start if you are an interiors blogger.
Extra Reading: Pinterest Group Boards, the Good and Bad: Ultimate Guide
13. Post consistently and frequently
To make people realise it’s worth their while to follow you, you need to have a clear agenda for your account as well as filling it with plenty of amazing imagery. Remember, portrait imagery works best on Pinterest.
Consistency is key on Instagram even more so than the other channels. When someone lands on your profile, it needs to be instantly obvious what you are all about. Urban Couture Design does this perfectly, their imagery is consistent and you know that if you follow them, you’ll get a steady stream of high-quality interior inspiration on your feed.
Extra Reading: How Often Should You Post on Social Media in 2018?
14. Like More of Other People’s Content
The ‘like’ feature is the most underused feature of Pinterest (and other platforms) for many users as most people just ‘save’ (formally ‘repin’) their favourite pins. Liking pins is a great way to engage with other pinners without needing to have the image on your boards. This is also very relevant for all other social channels.
As well as following people in your niche, make sure you like photos in your niche. Use the search feature, look at hashtags and like the photos that suit your style. Often people will see these likes and then check out your profile (and if they like it, it hopefully leads to a new follower for you too).
15. Answer Questions
Social media (particularly on Twitter) is full of questions – and this is your opportunity to make the most of them. By answering questions from people you want to follow you have asked, it becomes instantly more likely they will follow you back:
- Create a private list of key people you want to follow you
- Check this list frequently to see if they have asked any questions
- Reply if you know the answer or RT to help them find an answer
- Once they see your name a few times helping them out, they’ll be sure to give you a follow
Extra Reading: How to Build Your Credibility by Answering Questions
16. Share Others Content and let them know it
Giving back and sharing your appreciation for other people’s work and content is a great way to both develop relationships as well as growing your social audience. Relevant across most channels – sharing other peoples imagery on your Instagram or sharing their blog content on your Twitter – it all works.
Always remember to tag (@mention, etc) and give full credit for any images you share – this way they will know you have shared it (and hopefully thank you for doing so).
Extra Reading: Why Should You Share Other People’s Facebook Content?
17. Get involved in Twitter Chats
Don’t be afraid to participate in Twitter chats. Whether you are contributing advice to others or asking a question yourself – each will drive engagement and likely lead to growing your own followers.
It’s also worth mentioning that at the time of writing #InteriorsChat is back – so go get involved!
Extra Reading: Twitter Chats explained: How to take part & how to run them
18. Use the Right Hashtags
Hashtags are one of the most popular features of social media – mainly now for Instagram – it can lead to a burst of followers who are keen on a certain topic.
Making sure you know the most popular interior design hashtags in your niche is crucial to growth. Test out a few new ones (as long as they are relevant to your post) and see how the engagement changes – do your research and see what works best.
Extra Reading: How to Not Suck at Instagram Hashtags in 2018
19. Ask users to ‘Tag a Friend’ in Your Posts
‘Tag a friend who’d you like to take here’ is the sort of posts you’ll see travel Instagram accounts writing. This can also work really well for interiors as well – if you imagine you’re sharing is of something that can be experienced or shared (a dining room image is a great example) then invite your followers to tag a friend and you’ll see a boost in engagement.
20. Encourage a ‘Double Tap’
This is Instagram ‘growth hacking’ gold – a (relatively) unknown feature of Instagram is that if you double tap on an image, it likes it. It was created to make it easier for people to use Instagram than having to click on the small heart button (that we all still click on).
By encouraging a double tap on a post whether it’s a quote post and you say ‘double tap if you agree’ or a beautiful garden post where you can say ‘double tap if you want this garden’. Try it and see if your audience is responsive – chances are you’ll see a boost in engagement.
Extra Reading: Secrets of the Double-Tap: Getting More Instagram Likes
21. Collaborate with Similar Users
Hosting an Instagram challenge with some other users is a great way to get your account seen by other people’s audiences. Outreach likeminded Instagram users that have a similar niche to your blog to set up the challenge within a specific theme then use photo prompts each day for a certain length of time and invite others to create and share their own photos to participate in the challenge.
22. Influencer Shoutouts
Influencer shoutouts have worked their way through most social platforms, first Facebook, then Twitter and now Instagram is the channel of choice to get influencer shout outs.
While this is not a free tactic, it can be tested with a small budget to see if it could be worthwhile for your business.
Find relevant influencers that would have the same audience as your target market, reach out and find out how much they would charge for a shoutout. This can range anywhere from £20-£2000+ depending on the number of followers and their engagement levels.
Start small, the nicher the better as it will drive better results than spraying shoutouts everywhere.
Extra Reading: Influencer marketing for small businesses
23. Improve Your Images
As an interior designer, the chances are you will have plenty of stunning imagery in your portfolio. If you aren’t already using it then this would be your first place to start.
Using your own imagery on Instagram (and other channels) will ensure your audience is engaging with your style and therefore be much more likely to become customers in the future.
If you want to add something extra to your images, try adding some quotes to them in Canva (best tool ever for non-Photoshop nerds).
Extra Reading: 4 Ways to Dramatically Improve Your Social Media Photos
24. Improve Your Links
When sharing links from your site, there are a few things you can do to make sure that they display better on Facebook and Twitter.
Facebook Open Graph Tags – These are tags (code) that Facebook uses to decide how to display the link you share within the platform. It features the image, title, and description of the link when it gets displayed and shared. These are also used by Linkedin.
Twitter Card Tags – Similar to Facebook Open Graph, these tags are used by Twitter to show the link. The image, title, and description can be customised for your Twitter audience.
Always remember to use the right sized images – you can build these easily in Canva is you are not proficient in Photoshop. You can set these tags up easily within Yoast SEO plugin if you are using WordPress.
25. Hashtags in Comments (Not The Description)
On Instagram, outside of the images, you upload you don’t have a lot of space to get your message across to your audience. You end up in a sticky situation between wanting to use lots of hashtags to reach new people and also concentrating on the message or call to action you are trying to get across in your post.
To get around this, instead of putting your hashtags in your post add them in the first comment on your post just after you publish. This way your post will still show up for those hashtags but also your description will be very clear to your audience.
Note: There are rumours this may stop working soon, but at the time of writing this still appears to be working.
Extra Reading: Hashtags In The First Comment: Instagram Tips & Tricks
26. Encourage Clicking Link in Bio
In the early days of Instagram, there were a lot of people who discredited it as a worthwhile channel for businesses – as links in posts weren’t possible.
However, there were a few who realised that this link could give a single flow of traffic to a dedicated page on their site (knowing full well where the traffic is coming from).
On your Instagram posts, make sure you say ‘click link in bio’ or just ‘link in bio’ when you update the link to be relevant for your post. Whether its a link back to a recent new case study of your interior design work or a link through to your email sign up page.
Extra Reading: 7 Clever Ways To Use Links In Your Instagram Bio
27. Use Emojis
People love emojis and from a marketing standpoint, emojis are undeniably useful. Emojis in a tweet can increase engagement by 25.4%, and emojis in a Facebook post can increase the number of likes by 57% and the number of comments and shares by 33%. If emojis can so drastically increase the likelihood of engagement, there’s no reason you shouldn’t be using them.
Use them sparingly and make sure they are relevant – don’t abuse your new-found hack for more engagement.
28. Brand Your Images
Every now and then, an image you post on social media – whether that be on Facebook, Pinterest, Instagram or Twitter – could go viral. The last thing you want is for that image to go viral and people to lose sight whose image it is and for you not to get the recognition you deserve for your hard work.
Now I’m not saying to place a huge watermark over your image – that is a sure fire way to make sure that your image does not go viral. But a small logo added near the bottom of the image either in the centre or one of the corners should suffice. It will give clear ownership of your images ready for them to go viral.
29. Ask for Reviews
Make your Houzz profile really stand out by getting testimonials from your clients – it will increase the likelihood of getting more prospective clients through the Houzz platform. Also, by having more reviews you get a boost in the search results so will rank higher in the search results for interior designers in your area.
This may sound like a simple strategy, but it is crucial to maximising the results of your efforts on Houzz and Facebook.
Extra Reading: How To Get More Facebook Reviews (Without Even Asking)
30. Post More Videos
If you haven’t noticed – video content is taking over virtually every social media platform.
If you already are or are thinking about including video in your marketing strategy, you’re definitely heading in the right direction. Research has found that videos are twice as memorable than text content and 1.2 times more memorable as photos.
Video creation does not need to cost an arm and a leg either – you should start small and experiment with videos taken on your phone. This could be as a simple as a panned shot around a room or a video of yourself giving a top tip on how to achieve a type of look.
Extra Reading: Quick Tips for Posting Videos on Social Media Like A Pro
31. Perfect Your Bio
A frequently forgotten aspect of social media is forgetting your bio – on some channels (like Instagram) it’s one of the most important areas of your activity on that channel and remember people research potential designers to work with, if you have a complete Facebook page about us section – it will reflect positively on your brand.
Extra Reading: 10 Foolproof Ways to Create a Magnetic Social Media Bio
32. Track Your Instagram Traffic
As we highlighted, your bio link is absolutely key to your success on Instagram. But you can’t stop there! Making sure you know exactly how much traffic you are driving from Instagram to your website is essential – and there are a couple of easy ways to track this.
Firstly, using bit.ly you can shorten links to your site. Simply go to bit.ly, put your URL to shorten, and it will spit out a short link that you can put in your bio. You can then track how many times people have clicked on your link.
A slightly more advanced way of tracking is to use UTM links – if you are using Google Analytics to track the traffic. Use this generator to set up tracking parameters – and then put that link into bit.ly. You will then be able to see directly within your Google Analytics all of your Instagram traffic.
Extra Reading: How To Get Instagram Traffic To Show In Google Analytics
33. Schedule Everything
Running your social media can sometimes feel like a drag, taking forever to share your posts on every channel, spreading yourself so thin logging in and logging out of your different accounts to post everywhere.
But this need not be such a laborious activity – and an incredible tool called Buffer can be your saving grace and save you hours of your time managing your social profiles. Schedule a week’s worth of content in just a matter of minutes – you won’t regret the decision to use Buffer.
Extra Reading: How to Create a Social Media Posting Schedule
34. Hyper-Targeted Paid Social Advertising
The perks of over two billion people using Facebook is that the chances are your target audience (or at least part of it) is using Facebook on a monthly basis.
Facebook is a goldmine for creating adverts targeted purely towards your demographic. If your design business is location specific, you can specify a specific radius around your area, choose the desired house value or household income, and anything else that will confirm those users as being in your target market.
The best part, you can test it out from as little as £5 (although we recommend at least £50 to get more data to see if it works for you).
Extra Reading: How to Use Facebook Ads for Local Businesses
One of the best pieces of advice we can give you is to focus more of your efforts on growing your engagement rather than following. You want to make sure those who are following you are engaging as much as possible and with that, growth will come in your follower numbers.