Six Killer Interior Design Brand Blogs to Read Now
Shortly after the design bloggers conference this past week in LA, the editors of FMM became enthralled with the way that online retailers like Wayfair, Joss & Main, Hayneedle, The Foundary, One Kings Lane, Kohler, Bejamin Moore and Sherwin Williams develop and execute blogger and brand content strategies. We went on a quest for the best interior design brand blogs in the decor and home industries. Here are six outstanding examples of branded content for interior design lovers.
West Elm – Front & Main
In January,when we told you about the best luxury and interior blogs of 2011, Front & Main was on the list. It fuels our addiction to the West Elm store in Santa Monica, and buying only one item a month is an exercise in self-control. They’ve recently launched the Mr. and Ms. Smith Hotel Collection and The Found Shop, featuring beautiful pieces from Morrocco (my family’s birthplace). We’re in love.
Why we love it: West Elm does an amazing job of juxtaposing its brand against the lifestyle of its customers, as well as supporting the local independent design scene in their native Brooklyn. While the blog design is simple, the content strategy is top notch.
Wayfair – My Way Home
During the Design Bloggers Conference, Kristine Kennedy, editorial director of Wayfair.com, shared the philosophy behind the furniture and decor retailer’s website. She explained how Wayfair’s Pinterest-inspired blog is not only being used to market the company’s products through unique blogger and tastemaker collaborations, but also to redefine the word “homemaker.”
“The term homemaker has been part a noble term for centuries, now it has negative connotations to it,” said Kennedy. “By approaching our guest writer’s content in the way we do and donning them with the title of homemaker, we’re taking it back and empowering women to identify with it.”
Why we love it: I think that’s evidently clear from the statements above, but we also love the way that this site feels like a blog, not a corporate outlet for promotion. Social conversation and social sharing were top of mind with Kennedy when she relaunched Wayfair’s blog…and it’s clearly paying off.
Design Within Reach – Design Notes
Design Within Reach jumped on our radar at New York Fashion Week this year when I spoke on bloggers going mobile at the Independent Fashion Bloggers Conference.
DWR had an active presence at the conference and photographed all the bloggers and participants that came in their uber chic DWR space complete with hot pink couch. They then edited the photos on the spot and emailed them to the bloggers for them to post and use. They also posted them to a huge gallery on their own blog.
Why we love it: I like how DWR is showing its relevancy to fashion, not just interiors, through participation at non traditional events. Instead of High Point, they came to Milk Studios and made their brands accessible to 350+ possible customers with their interactive outreach campaign.
It’s a smart marketing move–going outside your traditional vertical to build relationships with new audiences. Also, who can’t help but like a blog that poses the question “How will Frank Gehry would shape his birthday?” I kinda imagined another Tiffany’s collaboration?
The Foundary – Hayneedle.com
Okay, so The Foundary is our latest obsession in terms of private sale site. If you could take Fab.com and Gilt Home and smash them together, you would get The Foundary. Why would we event want to do this? Well, because we love the Fab, but sometimes it’s too uber hip. We love Gilt, but sometimes it’s too irrelevant. How do you marry San Francisco and New York? Well, this little sale site out of Omaha, Nebraska found the answers. Seriously they even had Bombata laptop cases! Sold out everywhere is LA. How hipster is that?
Why we love it: The Foundary’s new blog is great, just like the site. They’re starting with some fun topics and we can’t wait to see how it fills in. Be sure to look out for a future FMM post about Foundary Haul, seriously. ADDICTED to this site, great user interface (some good coders and ecomm guys to thank I’m sure) and it has a mobile responsive design. WHAT!
P.S. That puppy dog on the front page is so LA…So sign up!
H.D. Buttercup – Los Angeles and San Francisco
When was the last time you checked out H.D. Buttercup’s website? If you’re a true Californian, you usually bypass their site and head straight to Helms Bakery for a day of inspiration and lunch at Father’s Office.
I recently received an email about the upcoming sale clearing out the outlet store. Being that I’m redoing our office, it was perfect timing.
Why we love it: The blog of H.D. Buttercup is absolutely fabulous for a place that has no e-commerce. They come up with themes, trends or topics that are relevant to their local customers to draw them into the store. How could the titles of “7 Bookshelves You’ve Gotta Have” or “Nothing Lasts Forever” not pique your curiousity? We ended up pinning a few things to Pinterest while we looked at all the visual eye candy.
Uncommon Goods – The Goods
I discovered Uncommon Goods this past Christmas when their catalog came in the mail. My darling wife went Lady GaGa over a tea cup that held cookies in a compartment under the tea. Naturally, I logged onto the site and starting shopping. It was love at first strange little teacup.
Why we love it: Well, the love doesn’t start at the blog, it starts with all the merchandise on the site. We love the unique pieces and designers we find here. What’s even cooler is that they designed a Pinterest contest that challenges customers and social fans to create a board about their ultimate bedroom that requires them to pin 20 items from Uncommon Goods to the board in order to win a $250 gift certificate to the site. Wow, 20 links with prices to product pages? A social contest with SEO and product sales in mind? That’s some awesome social search marketing.
So FMM readers: We have six blogs, what should the seventh be?
What are your favorite brand blogs – big or small? Leave a comment.
Prizes: The person that helps us discover the coolest brand blog not listed here will receive the Design Bloggers Conference Bag complete with the new WaterPik EcoFlow shower head. Or, if you’re in the interior design community and you comment, you’ll be receiving an amazing fashion related present from us.
Anyone can answer, even marketers! Marketers should get amazing interior swag too