Category Archives: Social Media Marketing

Design Chicago
Posted by:Denise Butchko,

Social Media Marketing Required.


That’s the “state of design” message that dominated this 2-day design lovers event at the Merchandise Mart, even though there was plenty of design education, discussion, sharing and designer cocktails (Hibiscus and English Tea infused vodka) all around.

Amongst the designer teams from Italy to the English color experts were the NYC digital marketing professionals. And all were accompanied by video cameras and Facebook live streaming, topped off by Instagram posts and Tweets galore.

I noticed that every session related to marketing not only filled all the available seats, but had standing room only attendees filling out the rest of the showroom space.

It seems that mainstream understanding and integration have finally reached critical mass.

Bottom line is that you won’t be effective using old world marketing techniques even if old world antiques are still the passions of your client base.

Effective social media marketing is the linchpin to staying relevant and growing and branding your business.

So here’s a fun stat for you – 93% of people over the age of 35 are on Facebook.

Process that for a moment.

Then look me in the eye and tell me you see no business value in Facebook and that your audience isn’t there.

If, however, you already get that and you’re using (or have tried using) social media to market your business and ended up in the land of confusion and ineffectiveness, the following insights should clarify a few things.

Boiled down, there are really three ways to to categorize your approach to marketing.

Director of Digital for Sandow Publications,  Pam McNally, breaks it out this way:

1)Digital Marketing Companies

A “comprehensive” marketing company that supposedly can do it all. Make sure you test their social media management skills and ask for references regarding social media.


2)Content Marketing Companies

These companies put blogging at the core of their strategy. Content is king and social media are platforms for distribution. Test their social media management skills and ask for references specific to social expertise.

I would add that email marketing is part of that core blogging concept. Don’t just settle for “curated content” and automated posting. Choosing that method for execution is not going to yield you any success.


3)Social Media Marketing

This is probably what you’re looking for if your only focus is managing and distributing the content creation that you’ve already mastered.

I know very few companies in the design/build niche’ that have the art and science of generating great content mastered.

Truth is that things are way too sophisticated now to just put out “crap content”. You have to create and share things that you, yourself, would find clickable. If you’d scroll right over it in your feeds, other people are likely to do the same thing.

So this all begs the question – do you take this on internally or do you outsource?

In either case, you should know your goals and which metrics are relevant and appropriate for you to measure.

If you’re outsourcing, I would want to know what experience the agency has in your industry. Do they speak your language and understand your processes. Also, how often will they update you with information and progress and will one of their employees be doing the work or do they outsource the tasks.

So it seems “Design Chicago”, or design anywhere, goes beyond measurements and material specifications. What’s integral to selling your design work is marketing it.

And marketing it effectively involves social media.

And to end the day on a high note, one of the rock stars of the design industry, Julia Buckingham (Bucking I+D), launched her book “Modernique”. Of course I had to get my own signed copy. And my own “selfie” with her. Not just because I admire the holy heavens out of the design work she does, but because hey, it’s good marketing.

Toasting “Modernique” with author and designer Julia Buckingham


  • Share :
1 minute of Video = 1.8 Million Words
Posted by:Denise Butchko,

So it really does seem like a picture paints even more than a thousand words.

And that stat, which comes from Forrester Research, gives me pause. It would take me much longer to write that much content than it takes me to create it with video.

That’s a lot of words. And regardless of how prolific you are with the pen, most of it won’t get read.

People are “watching” things these days. Looking at lots of pictures. Swiping their devices for something that will catch their attention.

And their attention spans are short, so you better be both good and fast and getting that attention and then getting them (eventually) in to action.

So how do you do that? How do you catch their attention?

Video is a wonderfully effective tool for achieving that goal.

In fact, according to ComScore, a company that measures online video marketing and use, says that people are exposed to an average of 32 videos a month.

And video does not have to be big production. It can be. But there are also tools like Animoto that can help you use pictures and words to create a video.


You can also use a screen recording tool like Screenflow or Go To Meeting and create videos right from your desktop.

Then there’s your phone. A tool you almost always have with you. Take some quick footage of your projects in a more casual, storytelling way and share on your social platforms.

And if you would like to learn more specifics and how to’s, you can access the video with this link:


video marketing

Importance of video in marketing

It’s a FREE ON DEMAND session that is packed with great tips and info to help you understand more about how and why to use video as a tool for marketing your business.

  • Share :

Ashton Kutcher just gave his “home” in Iowa (where his parents live and where he was raised) a makeover using the “Houzz” app. In his words he used Houzz to “build something new”. And he did it all under the guise of a Mother’s Day gift.

And there’s brilliance to this beyond making your mom really, really happy with such an awesome gift.

It’s the rather pure, authentic marketing. Kutcher (who executive produces the segments and is a Houzz investor) tells the story of expanding the Iowa homestead while weaving in Houzz marketing messages almost as brilliantly as the team responsible for The Ellen DeGeneres show.

I’m telling you – you need to pay attention to this approach to reaching your customers. It’s how you’ll spend the majority of your marketing budget within five years.

And if you’re not following what I’m saying right now, then you need to watch TV (or any other platform through which you view “video”) through some new filters. And those filters are the way that products and services are woven into the content of the program you’re viewing. It’s better than the final episodes of Mad Men.

So as you read this, I’m hoping you’re not only familiar with Houzz, but active on the platform as a business development tool.

Many professionals in the design/build industries are. It’s one of the strongest, tech based platforms available to these industries.

And while your profile lives on the Houzz platform and most of your activity and any advertising also take place there, Houzz is active and creating content on other platforms. Namely, and most importantly, You Tube.

Why should you care about that? Because of the potential for a project you’re involved in to be featured on this platform. According to an award winning kitchen designer I’m connected to, the team at Houzz has had several conversations with her about filming an artsy project she completed for use with the Houzz platforms.

So keep an eye on Houzz. And keep an eye on Kutcher. Maybe you’ll get “punked” the next time you’ve completed a brilliant remodel (Google “punked” if you don’t get that).

Check out the Houzz and Kutcher collaboration

Check out the Houzz and Kutcher collaboration

The makeover is divided into four video segments and it’s fun to watch.
And if you would like to ask a marketing question, head on over to and ask away. We may just feature your question on a broadcast. You can also download a free “cheat sheet” with correct image sizes for your social media posts.

  • Share :