How interior designers use social media

Social media has had a large impact on huge swathes of our lives, interests and businesses, and interior design is no stranger to the widespread social media phenomenon that continues to sweep through almost every aspect of our lives.

Given design’s inherent visual and aspirational links, the social media milieu is the ideal breeding ground for discourse, interaction and engagement with the design community. As such, design has a huge community on social media, which has become a haven for sharing the latest products to enter the world of interiors, finding advice and keeping on top the latest trends in an ever-changing landscape.

Popular networks for interior design

Of the broad options at interior designers’ disposal, it won’t come as a surprise that the most visual platforms are largely the most popular and the most engaged. In line with this, Instagram is a key player in the way interior designers interact with their digital audience. Instagram’s visual focus is the perfect breeding ground for the kind of aspirational thirst that many interior design enthusiasts harbour, allowing interior design influencers to share a plethora of attractive styles and products, and showcase trends, whilst also weaving in a personal touch. This allows them to blur the lines between promotional sales content and aspirational content to build awareness.

Similarly, Pinterest is a very widely used platform in the world of interior design, with some interior designers, such as Kate Watson-Smyth (who we will talk about in more detail later) presiding over hugely influential accounts. The nature of Pinterest means there’s less opportunity for conversation and interaction, but its highly visual format lends itself perfectly to the interior design sphere. The inherent organisational aspect of Pinterest (saving images by ‘pinning’ them to a board) links to the aspirational side of interior design seamlessly, allowing users to scour their favourite accounts for inspiration and keep their favourite images together.

In terms of Facebook and Twitter, we can expect interior designers to update their communities on design advice and changing trends, whilst interacting with this community to answer questions and offer guidance. However, when it comes to what we might now call the ‘traditional’ social media channels, Facebook and Twitter, the content can be less engaged here than on the more prominent visually-tailored platforms for obvious reasons.

Journalist and interior designer, Kate Watson-Smyth, who runs the hugely popular blog Mad About The House, serves as a good example of how interior designers lean more towards visual platforms. Her Facebook page has just over 1,000 likes, in stark contrast to her Instagram following of over 11,000 users and better still, her Pinterest following which totals over 190,000 users. Similarly, Jen Stanbrook’s huge Love Chic Living blog has over 4,000 likes on Facebook, yet boasts over 980,000 followers on Pinterest, further suggesting interior design’s intrinsic link to visual imagery in the social media environment. The key to the success and influence of interior designers on visual platforms such as Instagram and Pinterest is the avoidance of sales content – the most successful accounts manage to build a community of users who are genuinely interested and engaged with their content.

How this presents opportunities

This wide-ranging and highly engaged community of interior designers, ranging from large brands and professional influencers to enthusiasts at home, presents huge opportunities for brands to interact and engage with the design community through social. Consumers no longer want to be talked at by brands – people want practical information and honest recommendations – and this is where social media steps up.

The fervour we see for interior design on social media affords brands excellent opportunities to connect with a large, highly-engaged social community through influencer marketing strategy and outreach, and this is something that we’re likely to see more of as we continue to move forward in the ever-evolving digital landscape.

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