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Speaking Engagements as a Tool for Success

You Are Your Best Advocate

Speaking Engagements as a Tool for Success


To put it simply: You are your best advocate. Of course, to build your brand you not only need volume in the voices backing you, but how do you draw in those supporters? To draw in support, one must utilize and enhance existing relationships to grow and build new opportunities. Participating in speaking engagements allows you to advocate for yourself along with fellow industry leaders, partners and media.

Whether you sit on a panel with other industry influencers or give a talk on your own, the insight and knowledge you share is greatly valued. The positives of sitting on a panel is that you are able to make connections with your peers, can compare and contrast points of view, and are promoted through their channels. On your own you can share intimate details on your business, your process and even the ups and downs that have led to your success which bonds you with others who are in a similar situation or let potential clients feel less intimidated to work with you. These types of events give you name recognition, credibility and promote you as a leader or expert in your field. It is also the perfect moment for media to learn more about upcoming names and build story ideas off of the unique details you might bring to the discussion.

As a company, we have been participating in speaking engagements on branding, marketing and PR. We recommend these experiences to clients who feel comfortable speaking, as it brings a face for people to connect with and remember. For example, we set up Atlanta based client Tish Mills- Kirk to participate in a panel discussion locally at Atlanta ADAC Market, this gave her the opportunity to build her relationship with vendors Style Library and Grizzel & Mann, meet and talk with an editor from AD Pro, along with explore the topic with fellow designers Michael Mitchell and Tyler Hill of Mitchell-Hill and Tim Green of Tim Green Designs. We also set Tish up to style a tablescape vignette in the Alden Parkes showroom with Replacements at High Point Market and were able to reach out to Style Library to help support her design through the rapport she received through the previous talk. She also engaged an audience in the space by participating on a panel with fellow designers Denise McGaha and Joni Vanderslice on unconventional ways to grow your business.

The more that you are out in the public eye the more opportunities become available for you and your business. Team up with brands targeting the same audience to make an imapact and gain eachothers existing followers. If you are a store or showroom make your space available for events and put together a few speaking experiences, this is trending as the best way to build engagement and feedback from the audience you are targeting. Don’t be afriad to add personality and a face to your business!

For more infrmation or help with an event, contact Beth@imagesanddetails.com.

Speaking Engagements as a Tool for Success2019-11-05T13:01:30-05:00

How To Navigate The Ever-Changing Landscape Of Media

How To Navigate The Ever-Changing Landscape Of Media

It’s time to create a new road map.

Over the last several years, media has taken a downward spiral, especially in the home and interiors sector. From the toppling of the mighty in 2018 of Hearst Tower — House Beautiful, ELLE Decor and Veranda, to last Friday’s news of Traditional Home downsizing and bringing 5 Publications under one editor, it’s a totally new landscape.

Last month, I moderated the “Changing Landscape of Media” panel at the Luxury Home Design Summit at the Chatham Bars Inn hosted by New England Home Magazine. It was a dynamic three days of incredibly compelling speakers and discussions. I would highly recommend attending next year’s event.

The big takeaway is: in reality, there are more opportunities today to be able to generate exposure for you and your company than ever before. The challenge is to determine who to approach and how to get them to notice you.

A few tips:
Content is key
Craft a compelling story
Know your audience
Be authentic
One to one conversations

Stacy Kunstel a long time stylist and media maven shared some thoughts of media from the old guard (print) to the new media and what’s on the horizon. Overall, there are many more opportunities to get exposure for your company, especially in nontraditional ways. The downside is how to decipher and determine what is correct for you and your brand. Here are a few of her thoughts on what design related companies might want to explore now: self publish, YouTube, Zillow, podcasts, designer in resident features, non-design media covering design.

Digital director Keith Pollock of AD shared insights into their power in the marketplace. They recently have grown to 4 million Instagram followers. In April, they launched a pro membership service for designers similar to Business of Home but with much more capabilities and customization. It provides opportunities to get published, sourcing assistance and train reporting. Tip from Pollock: pitch via email, be brief but give noteworthy details.

Adam Japko of Esteem Media discussed the new landscape and creating custom contact through native advertising. This feels and looks visually like natural content. There is a 61% growth in this category since 2016. One of the interesting tidbits is if you hear something, a few days later you typically only recall 10%, whereas if you see an image there is 65% recall. It is a visual world today. They are projecting dollars spent on influencer marketing to be $5 to $10 billion by 2020.
Tip: When working with influencers, brands need to “let go of control” this allows content to “be authentic”.

As a creative brand strategist, our recommendation is always to have a great story to tell and to spend the time to know who your target audience is. It is the method of delivery that is really different today. If you want to learn more give us a call.

Beth Dempsey
Images and Details
203.966.8203
Beth@ImagesandDetails.com

How To Navigate The Ever-Changing Landscape Of Media2019-07-09T14:27:20-05:00

The Power of Video in Brand Marketing

The Power of Video in Brand Marketing

This year a digital layer has been added to the essential marketing tools needed to promote your business. Video is a versatile way to successfully interact with your target audience, pique their curiosity and visually tell your story.  


Guess what! Yes, there are millions of other businesses offering the same thing that you are. Make your business stand out by providing unique messages and methods of distribution that will grasp potential customer’s attention.

 

As publications are amping up their digital platforms they are starting to utilize video more and more. Business of Home who describes themselves as,“the daily media of record for the home industry, and the voice of authority for interior design professionals”, has now shifted more of their stories to videos. They have an array of content available to their audience including; special events, designer profiles and collection launches. House Beautiful, the 100-year interior design publication, has added a video element to their website and has also created a YouTube channel that now has over 6 million views. On this platform audiences get an insider guide to new retail shops as well as designers projects.

The way advertising has been constructed in the past has completely been transformed today. With the help of digital platforms, viewers no longer see advertisements and promotions as just that, however they see it as infotainment. High Point Market Authority capitalizes on this opportunity by promoting their trade markets on YouTube through a series called, “The Faces of High Point.” These videos give their audience a peek into the attendee’s experiences while simultaneously promoting the event. With the help of this series, which includes our client Wakefield, this channel has received over 550,000 views, a win-win for brand awareness.

Blogs like, Quintessence, founded by Stacey Bewkes roughly seven years ago, have also gained heavy traction by incorporating video into the mix. With the help of her co- creator, Susanna Salk, their popular YouTube series called, “At Home With”, provides exclusive insider access to top designers and tastemakers at home around the world. As of April, 2019, they have generated over 6 million views as well as over 30,000 subscribers to their channel. These big numbers have created sponsorship opportunities for Salk and Bewkes.

Sharing information digitally is a tool that is more cost effective than prints, therefore should not be overlooked. The success these blogs and businesses have seen, proves that it is vital to have a digital platform and begin utilizing the tools that will help you reach a new audience that has never seen you before.

How to get your platform started:

  • Define your audience.
  • Keep your video cohesive with any other marketing campaigns you have done in the past.
  • Brainstorm a strong story that will keep the customer intrigued.
  • Attach an emotional aspect to the message that the viewer can connect with.
  • Implement the call to action. Be sure to provide the viewer with the point that you are trying to get across.

If you are interested in growing your business, please reach out to us at (203) 966-8203

The Power of Video in Brand Marketing2019-06-14T11:50:57-05:00

Effective Collaborations

Effective Collaborations

Collaboration can be such an effective tool for small businesses to build their brand, particularly in today’s competitive marketplace. 


To take your business to the next level consider these 4 tips as a foundation in your brand strategy.

First, it is necessary to find brands that are complementary and have the same values as your own business. Then you want to leverage that synergy between the two which can increase your audience reach.
Screen Shot 2019-02-05 at 3.56.42 PMMost recently, Images and Details did just that with the 4th edition of our pop- up, Ancien et Moderne in Paris. We brought together heritage brands in the luxury home sector such as Savoir beds, Rinck, and Maison Leleu utilizing a theme of “Ode to the Orient Express” to create synergy and tell a story. Savoir beds partnered with Voutsa fabrics to create bed toppers. Rinck collaborated with Fromental wallcoverings and Hector Finch Lighting to create a boiserie wall that replicated a train car on the Orient Express. The result: one of the most talked about collaborative projects during Maison Objet and Deco Off! Design inspiration and storytelling at its best!

Press coverage included: WSJ, AD Pro, T & C, Interior Design

Second, utilize each others’ social media networks, such as Instagram and LinkedIn, to share your stories and double your engagement and exposure. Check out  Savoir bed’s, Rinck’s, and Voutsas Instagram feeds. Screen Shot 2019-02-05 at 5.08.46 PMThird, you want to share assets such as photography, marketing materials, and events.  Maison Leleu and Rinck are both heritage brands with strong French ties and rich stories to tell. To expand their network and spread their brand story, they co-hosted a cocktail party inviting key clients, media and the French Interior Design Society.  Savoir Bed and Lasvit collaborated on an event with Luxe Magazine. Voutsa partnered with NYDC to invite their clients and press to see the space and meet the participants.  Each spread the word in a more cost-effective manner.   Invitations, e-blasts, and photography were co-oped and shared by the various participants.  The market and PR teams worked together to attract the different media – French, American and British which was much more effective and efficient. This increases your chance of exposure exponentially and on an international level.  Each brand has to remember to be responsive and leverage that exposure to help grow their respective brand.

And finally, if you can get your product on a new sales platform it can be a great way to increase sales distribution through larger luxury retail channels. Voutsa Textiles worked with Savoir beds and created a custom topper that is now being featured in Savoir showrooms. This became a win-win for both brands.

Effective Collaborations2019-05-28T14:00:34-05:00

Creative Ways to Build a Community

Creative Ways to Build Community

Right here in our backyard, is the idyllic town of Greenwich, Connecticut that is so rich with extraordinary design and home stores, restaurants and luxury retailers, flocked with some of the finest decorators and charming locals and yet somehow nothing had been done to celebrate this!


Thanks to Beth Dempsey, our President and Founder of Images & Details, Inc. “There is always strength in numbers.” says Beth. Something must be done to bring us all together and celebrate the passion that everyone has to offer one another. “The number of design related businesses has grown exponentially, so the idea of forming a group makes good business sense for all involved. The design industry is an inclusive one and they realize that a success for one is success for all.” Many exhilarating months later we transformed this missed opportunity into a dazzling event and our Greenwich Design Districts’ October 2017 Taste and Tour event took form.

Fourteen different shops participated and attracted more than 300 participants throughout the evening. There were book signings, special art events, new product launches, celebrity designer appearances and many more activities within each shop. These relationships ignited conversations that helped create collaborations between designers and consumers.

Not surprised by the results but nonetheless overjoyed, we added another Greenwich Design District (GDD) event to the June calendar, a “Day of Design”. The objective of this event was to highlight the Interior Design community. We wanted the participants to be able to learn, shop and engage with their peers like they did in the Fall. We created a charming hand-drawn map  by B. Russell Melzer of Greenwich by B. Russell Melzer to guide people around the design district.

Here the design professionals, influencers, editors and consumers gathered to experience the latest trends in design. The energy that day was vibrant and enriching! Day of Design featured more than 15 talks, lectures, book signings, conversations, meet-and-greets in members’ shops and showrooms. We arranged for attendees to meet some of the design industry’s best editors of the time such as Sophie Donelson, Editor-in-chief of House Beautiful long with Traditional Home’s Style Editor Tori Mellott and Serendipity’s Home Editor, Stephanie Horton. There was a Color Analysis demonstration as well as the opportunity to get behind the scenes to look at some of the coolest lights. Many learned about licensing and the business of design and how One King’s Lane founder designed a collection for the Shade Store. Some attended a stimulating talk on discovering how antiques are being featured in some of the most contemporary spaces.

It was imperative to us to have the event run as smoothly as possible for everyone yet also have the viewers get the most out of it and have FUN. Other than the ads, newsletters, e-blasts, PR out-reach and social media posts, we also created the GDD website (www.greenwichdesigndistrict.com). At the time of the event, the website had already been viewed by more than 600 people. This had provided accessible event information at the fingertips of the participants. Afterward, in the Blog section of the GDD website, different participants and speakers have tips posted on their different fields. It is important to us to have viewers always thinking about the event this way so it can grow for years to come.

We have now just completed our Second Annual Taste and Tour event: “Setting the Scene for Fall”.

On October 17, thirteen different shops participated in the evening! Their doors were opened inviting participants to discover the latest trends in interior design and entertaining. Attendees were encouraged to meet design influencers, view new exhibits, get a book signed, learn about the importance of good lighting, savor local food and cider, admire special designed windows, enjoy music and many more activities within each shop while enjoying their tour of the Greenwich Design District. The more shops each guest visited, the higher chance they had in winning a raffle prize. This was such a great way to see what was new all in one evening!

Creative Ways to Build a Community2019-05-28T14:08:39-05:00

A Dream Client

A Dream Client

Downtowns have always been an integral part of the community. With such a fast-paced society and a technologically driven culture taking over, it is more important than ever that we support our downtown retail shopping scenes.


Retailers who can capture their target audience and provide them with properly merchandise products and services are still thriving today. One example is Kirby and Company, founded by Elaine McCleary in downtown Darien, Connecticut. Not only is she a brilliant merchant, she knows how to market the store appropriately for her target audience. After working in the local retail environment of Juliska, McCleary identified the need for gifts and accessories and capitalized on it with her first retail shop, Kirby and Company, established in 2014. Targeting people who love color, family, happiness, and friends. After spending time getting to know her customers and utilizing the analytics of digital marketing, Elaine noticed a void in the marketplace for young women from ages 8 – 26, going from backpacks to first apartments. A place for girls and young women to buy affordable gifts and décor for themselves and friends along with a space that was speaking to them and not down to them. With the success of Kirby and Company, Elaine had the push and the perfect solution to open a second store called Kirby Girl.  In marketing terms, she definitely provides the customer with a unique value proposition and offers just the “right” product and the “right” price in the most appealing way. She makes her clients “feel good” about what they are purchasing.

From our perspective, as the PR and Marketing firm, Kirby and Company along with Kirby Girl are a dream client. They came prepared with the right marketing tools including a message, audience, graphic materials, keywords and more; giving us the opportunity to communicate a well-prepared message to the media. For their recent launch of Kirby Girl, they created vibrant yellow and white striped wall for selfies, a logo and tagline with a story, hashtags, and fabulous photography. With all of the right ingredients, we were armed with the right ammunition for a successful press launch.  We created a day for press to preview the space prior to opening including influencers, bloggers, journalists and stylist who were like kids in a candy store (literally with Kirby Kandy!). Investing in great photography is “key”. Case in point, photographer, Julia Dags captured the joy and color of the store. Elaine’s memories of her grandfather’s saying inspired the “Stay on the Sunny Side of the Street”, this saying reinforces her brand and her mission to empower her target audience- young woman or the young at heart. She successfully captured not only the media’s attention but also the hearts of the community. Local stories have started to be published, check them out in Serendipity July/Aug 2018, Lemon Stripes, Prettypinktulips, Darien News, Neirad, New Canaan & Darien Moms.

Kirby Girl is on the road to a sunny future.  Cannot wait to see what’s in store this Fall.

A Dream Client2019-06-14T11:57:12-05:00

Creative Brand Launches

Creative Brand Launches

Create brand appeal that speaks to the audience you are targeting. Produce quality tools and materials that proudly represent the company and your agency.


In preparation for a launch, whether it is a product, company or community, research and planning are key to a successful outcome. Understand the perception consumers, designers and media have of the brand and learn who you are targeting. Then tie that research into the overall goals and objectives of what you’re trying to accomplish.

Most recently PETER FASANO launched a new textile and wallpaper collection and the objective was to introduce it to trade (designers) and media outlets catering to the interior design industry. The overall brand image and verbiage should flow across all tools and materials for any launch. Every aspect of the packaging needs to be thought out and unified in order to be able to have the most impact. For PETER FASANO it was thinking about tangible tools that will represent the quality of the brand and display the new collection.

As Summer was approaching, we focused on what was an appropriate Summer item people will be able to utilize but also has the ability to be customized. A tote bag and water bottle came to mind as items we thought would resonate and allow us to display the patterns and prints in a unique way. This was a creative way for the designers and editors to keep thinking about the collection all Summer long. The tools have garnered positive feedback, editorial request and created social media buzz. Marketing materials like these continue to allow the brand to be involved in conversations in the marketplace.

Creative Brand Launches2018-06-20T10:21:11-05:00

Tips for A Successful Event

Tips for A Successful Event

Shari Lebowitz of Bespoke Designs has created a unique paper business in the heart of downtown Westport.


She nicknames herself “the paperpreneur.” With today’s Internet and technology driven society the lost art of handwritten notes and appropriate etiquette could be easily on the demise. To bring awareness to Lebowitz’s craft, Images and Details recommended hosting an informative Q and A with luxury design blogger Stacey Bewkes of Quintessence and Heather Wise Alexander of Bell’Invito invitations.

We envisioned a discussion on the new internet-driven event planning—which we deemed, “netiquette.”  We wanted to give listeners a chance to understand the importance of traditional handcrafted paper goods that proves to be elegant and personal in a world where online work can seem so distant and impersonal.

“In this digital age, there is nothing as warm and personal as a handwritten note on an exquisite piece of brightly colored, beautifully textured stationery,” says Lebowitz. “It takes an ordinary gesture and makes it a celebratory one. How wonderful it is to reach into your mailbox to find that gorgeous handwritten envelope.”

It was just the right recipe for success. The audience was comprised of, wedding and event planners, caterers, florists, hoteliers, and media. The result: new clients, engaged audience, and media coverage in both print media and online.

Screen Shot 2018-04-11 at 11.25.42 AM.png

 

Tips for A Successful Event2018-04-11T11:29:16-05:00

Bookish About Design

Bookish About Design

A well-strategized event can absolutely help a business grow and attract new Target audiences.


Take Putnam and Mason, for example—a fairly new interior design shop in Greenwich Connecticut. They were looking to raise their profile and reach both designers and luxury good consumers. Images and Details recommended a book signing with author Miguel Flores-Vianna for his new book The Haute Bohemians.

Screen Shot 2018-03-13 at 10.10.55 AM

While planning an event, timing is a fundamental element that can often determine the success or failure of the event.  In this instance, the thought was to highlight that The Haute Bohemians was one of the top 10 books for the holidays and was featured on the New York Times bestseller list. This enabled us to attract media attention in advance and get both pre-stories and blog features. As a result of a well-timed event more than 70 books were sold, the venue was filled to the brim with guests and a fun time was had by all to boot.

Next in our book series was The Authentics by Dara Caponigro.   Caponigro is currently the creative director of F. Schumacher & Co. and was formerly the editor-in-chief at VerandaAdditionally, she was the founding editor of Domino where she also served as the style director.  Caponigro’s illustrious resume allowed us to utilize her large network to our advantage for this book signing event as well.

Screen Shot 2018-03-12 at 1.37.25 PM

 

Bookish About Design2018-03-13T10:28:48-05:00

Events Matter

Events Matter

Seasonal  Events, Pop Ups and  Soirées

It seems as though today more companies and brands want experiences that allow them to connect with their customers and build brands in an intimate more meaningful way.


In January, we had our second rendition of Ancien et Moderne during Deco Off in Paris. This year’s theme celebrated 70’s bohemian chic glam. Brands like Fromental and Justin Van Breda were able to push the boundaries creatively in their product designs enabling us to come up with a concept that was not only visually stimulating, but that really brought the customization capabilities of both brands to the forefront.

Sculptor, Philippe Berry, collaborated with renown designers, Timothy Corrigan, Alex Papachristidis, Frank de Biasi, and Bambi Sloan to create one of a kind bronze mirrors. Bronze sculpture was brilliantly colored in two pieces by Monaco artist Carol Bruton. Designer Michelle Nussbaumer brought her sumptuous new fabrics, exotic jewelry and home accessories, while La Tuile la Loup set the perfect table with made-to-order ceramic dinnerware, and tabletop by French artisans. The Rug Company laid the ground work with two knotted silk rugs and Fabian Barbera’s newest candles provided the perfect scent for cold wintry Paris. All these custom pieces came together perfectly to create a space everyone couldn’t stop talking about. 

Screen Shot 2017-08-08 at 4.11.34 PM

Ancien et Moderne: Paris Pop-up 

In Spring, Putnam & Mason, a new retail concept in Greenwich, came to light when interior designer Robert Passal and accessories designer Kim Alessi put their heads together to form a collaborative design atelier. They created a layered space filled with contemporary products and classical antiques paired with design services in a multifunctional showroom and workspace for both consumers and trade.

The design atelier is a one stop shop for consumers and trade, handling every facet of building and designing a home. Local vendors including Robert Passal Interior Design, KLASP Home, Wheelock Kitchens, Phoenix Audio Video, Eastridge Construction, and Gro Pro will use the space as if it is their own showroom, giving clients the opportunity to see their work in action. For designers, a unique aspect of the new concept at Putnam & Mason is the kitchen, called “The Sample Bar”. Although it will still function as a beverage station for clients to get coffee, water, and wine the main reason for the kitchen is as a workspace for designers to layout their projects. The island and cabinetry will be filled with various samples of fabric, wallpaper, paint, and more.

For Putnam & Mason our goal was to announce the opening of the design atelier and educate consumers and trade of the unique services it will provide. When you add in the mix of artist Hunt Slonem and New England Home magazine as a partner, you get a win-win and the right upscale target audience to attend the opening.

Putnam & mason

Putnam & Mason Opening: (Left Image) Hunt Slonem, Stacy Kunstel, Kim Alessi (Right Image) Robert Passal, Meg Braff, Kim Alessi

KLAFFS was looking to have a Bath Expo and celebrate their vendors in their retail showroom. An evening with a CEU course, a trend talk with Editor in Chief DJ Carey of Cottages and Gardens and more than 300 attendees. Our main focus was to be the liaison between KLAFFS and CTC&G. Our second job was to help urge attendees to not only attend the event but to meet all the vendors and gain word of mouth advertising. We had a little fun with the social media hashtag and passport event using the phrase, #KLAFFSBubbleBash. It definitely made a big splash and plans are in the works for the next expo.

Klaffs

KLAFFS Bubble Bash: (Right Image) Stephanie Rapp, Andrea Williams, Sarah Weiland, Chris Roughan

In continuing our efforts to create a unique set of programs for Wakefield Design Center we started a Business of Design Series with Athome magazine. Our first seminar was a dynamic and informative panel discussion on Licensing led by Kate Verner. Finishing with a discussion between expert in licensing Kate Verner, licensee Linherr Hollingsworth and creative/editorial director of Athome magazine Amy Vischio. 

BofD Images

Wakefield Design Center, Business of Design Series: (Left Image) Kate Verner, Linherr Hollingsworth, Amy Vischio

Events Matter2017-08-11T09:15:00-05:00