276 episodes

Accelerating your Interior design and home brand business. Hosted by interior design pro, Darla Powell.

Designed by Wingnut Social | Interior Design Business Darla Powell

    • Arts
    • 5.0 • 251 Ratings

Accelerating your Interior design and home brand business. Hosted by interior design pro, Darla Powell.

    The Interior Designer’s Guide to the Remote Hiring Process - Episode 277

    The Interior Designer’s Guide to the Remote Hiring Process - Episode 277

    How do you navigate the remote hiring process for your interior design business? What should you include in the interview process? How do you retain a remote team once you hire them? Anna Shcherbyna joins Darla in this episode of Wingnut Social to tackle these questions head-on. 

    Anna Shcherbyna has over 10 years of experience in international operations and recruitment. She is the CEO of Remotivate, a recruitment agency that helps remote-friendly companies hire top remote management and leadership via a done-for-you service. Don’t miss her expert insight! 

    What You’ll Hear On This Episode of Wingnut Social
    [1:24] Housekeeping: Wingnut Webinar Announcement
    [2:25] Subscribe to Designed by Wingnut Social on YouTube!
    [2:52] Mini News Sesh: How to Boost Instagram Reels
    [6:55] Learn all about Anna Shcherbyna
    [8:30] How the pandemic accelerated remote hiring
    [12:03] The best places to hire remote employees
    [14:00] What to look for in a remote candidate
    [16:41] How to screen candidates remotely
    [22:27] The advantages of hiring internationally
    [26:49] How remote hiring can apply to designers
    [28:43] How to nail the remote hiring process
    [32:32] Ways you can retain your remote employees
    [34:48] The What Up Wingnut! Round

    Connect with Anna Shcherbyna
    Remotivate
    Book a demo call with Anna!
    Connect by email at Anna@LetsRemotivated.com
    Connect with Anna on LinkedIn

    Resources & People Mentioned
    August 24th at 11 am: Wingnut Webinar on Instagram Reels
    VideoAsk
    Remote 
    CliftonStrengths (formerly StrengthsFinder)
    The Untethered Soul by Michael A. Singer
    Record your podcast episodes on Riverside

    Why hire a remote workforce? 
    As of early 2022, 50% of applicants on LinkedIn have been for remote jobs, but only 20% of the jobs posted are actually remote. The #1 reason why candidates are applying for new jobs is because they’re being forced back into the office. Why are employers still resistant to remote work? 

    Anna points out that when people work remotely, productivity goes up, flexibility goes up, happiness goes up, and morale goes up. But the one thing that you do lose out on is that quickness of communication.

    How to screen candidates remotely
    Anna recommends that you screen for soft skills. It isn’t just about experience anymore. You can’t just look at someone’s resume and LinkedIn profile and determine if someone is a good fit. You need to look for a hunger to learn, time and effort, independence and drive, and someone who is self-motivated. 

    Obviously, you still want to screen candidates to make sure they’re a good fit for the position you’re hiring for. To do this, Anna loves using VideoAsk. You can see if a candidate is comfortable on camera and better assess their passion and interest in the role. 

    Anna also recommends using some personality tests (DiSC and Clifton Strengths, which was formerly StrengthsFinder). CliftonStrengths asks direct questions, such as what you enjoy—and what you don’t—and how you act in different scenarios. It’s harder for you to answer questions from the lens of what you think the potential employer wants. 

    Lastly, she always recommends a test project that is actionable and strategically related to the position being hired for. Give them an actual scenario you’re facing within your business and ask them how they’d resolve it. What steps would they take? Have them create a strategic plan. 

    What are the advantages of hiring a remote employee internationally? Anna shares a few factors you might not have considered!

    How to nail the remote hiring process
    Step #1: Start with a questionnaire that tackles what a candidate has experience in, the tools they’ve used, industries they’ve worked in, and more. It’s about covering the logistics. Doing this can eliminate 70% of the people applying. 

    Step #2: Ask the remaining 30% to record a short video where they present themselves and answer a couple of questions that you’ve provided. 

    Step #3: Set up

    • 40 min
    How Maria Killam Grew to 100k+ Instagram Followers - Episode 276

    How Maria Killam Grew to 100k+ Instagram Followers - Episode 276

    Maria Killam is a decorator, stylist, speaker, educator, and true color expert in interior and exterior design. She’s also the creator of the Killam Color System™, a proven system for choosing color that anyone can learn. 

    Maria has always shared her work on her blog and has thousands of readers. But her Instagram never took off—until recently. Maria leveraged a popular Instagram trend and grew to 100k+ Instagram followers in mere weeks. Learn how she did it in this episode of Wingnut Social! 

    What You’ll Hear On This Episode of Wingnut Social
    [1:48] Housekeeping: Wingnut Webinar + YouTube
    [2:50] Mini News Sesh: Instagram Feed Videos = Reels
    [6:43] Learn more about Maria Killam and her business
    [12:44] The basics of the Killam color system
    [18:00] The importance of understanding color
    [24:44] How Maria’s eDesign business stands out
    [29:13] How Maria feels about white interiors (and trending colors)
    [31:51] Maria’s marketing strategy on Instagram
    [38:36] What Maria would say to someone who wants a trendy space
    [40:30] Maria’s What Up Wingnut Round!
    [46:29] Blooper Reel!

    Connect with Maria Killam
    Maria’s Website
    Maria’s course: Colour Made Easy™
    Follow Maria on Instagram

    Resources & People Mentioned
    At Your Best by Carey Nieuwhof
    Record your podcast episodes on Riverside

    The evolution of Maria’s business
    Maria Killam launched her career while working in a paint store. She took a color course and learned how to accurately describe colors. As she helped clients choose the right colors for their homes, she started painting out large color samples and used them over and over again. 

    She saw that beiges always had the same undertones: pink-beige, green-beige, yellow-beige, etc. The undertones expanded from there. Her goal is to help her clients understand undertones so their design choices are complementary and timeless. 

    Maria created a color wheel tool to help people identify the undertones in their spaces to choose the right neutrals. Now Maria offers online courses and eDesign to help both designers and homeowners create timeless spaces.

    Keep listening to learn how understanding color and undertones influences every design choice you’ll make.

    Maria’s Strategy to gain 100k+ Instagram followers
    Maria has spent a lot of time on Instagram. Why? Because people judge you as a marketer, designer, and businessperson based on your number of Instagram followers. They’re either impressed—or not. 

    One day, Maria was watching an influencer who did a “10 ways to do something…” video series that they split into 10 parts. It was a light-bulb moment for Maria. So she launched her own 10-part series: “10 Finishes that Immediately Date Your New Build.” Her Instagram following grew by 100,000 followers in a matter of weeks. 

    Instagram is trying to be like TikTok. It’s ALL about video. It worked for Maria because her no-nonsense personality was fully expressed in these videos. Before, she followed different random trends. Secondly, you build trust faster when they watch a video. If you’re not on video, you’re going to be behind. So how do you get started? 

    Start sharing videos on your stories. They’re only 15 seconds and get you comfortable in front of the camera. Maria felt extremely awkward in her first videos. But you have to go through that awkward phase to become a rockstar on video. Maria has attracted a whole new audience. Learn how you can do the same in this episode of Wingnut Social!

    Connect With Darla & Wingnut Social
    www.WingnutSocial.com
    On Facebook
    On Twitter: @WingnutSocial
    On Instagram: @WingnutSocial
    Subscribe on YouTube
    Darla’s Interior Design Website
    Check out the Wingnut Social Media Lab Facebook Group!
    786-206-4331 (connect with us for your social media marketing needs)

     

    Subscribe to The Wingnut Social Podcast on iTunes, Google Podcasts, or TuneIn

    Audio Production and Show notes by
    PODCAST FAST TRACK
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    • 45 min
    How Lisa Gilmore Built a Multi-Million-Dollar Interior Design Firm - Episode 275

    How Lisa Gilmore Built a Multi-Million-Dollar Interior Design Firm - Episode 275

    Lisa Gilmore watched HGTV late at night when her mother thought she was sleeping. As she watched Candace Olson from “Divine Design” put these incredible designs together, she realized she could do the same thing. She went to design school right out of high school. 

    When she started her business, she focused on networking. Her goal? When anyone heard the word “interior design” she wanted them to immediately think “Lisa Gilmore.” 11 years later, she’s been featured in Forbes, Business of Home, Coveteur, Better Homes & Gardens, and more. 

    Lisa is recognized for her bold use of color, functionality, and “liveable glamour.” She’s built a multi-million-dollar interior design firm from the ground up. But her journey wasn’t without setbacks. Listen to this episode of Wingnut Social to learn what she did to build a thriving multi-million-dollar interior design firm.

    What You’ll Hear On This Episode of Wingnut Social
    [1:20] Housekeeping: Check out this month’s webinar!
    [2:05] Mini News Sesh: YouTube, Instagram, or TikTok for video?
    [6:07] Learn all about the extraordinary Lisa Gilmore
    [10:25] How Lisa became an interior designer
    [15:34] Is it important to work with an established interior designer?
    [17:27] Becoming a multi-million-dollar interior design firm in 10 years
    [22:22] The changes Lisa made to her pricing structure to achieve growth
    [26:00] What percentage of Lisa’s business is furnishings and accessories?
    [28:34] What Lisa learned from hitting financial rock bottom
    [33:45] How to prepare your interior design business for a recession
    [38:00] Don’t be afraid to get uncomfortable to grow to the next level
    [39:25] Lisa experiences the What Up Wingnut Round!
    [42:52] The Wacky Wingnut Blooper Reel!

    Connect with Lisa Gilmore
    Lisa Gilmore Design
    Follow Lisa on Instagram

    Resources & People Mentioned
    Scarlet Thread Consulting
    Profit First by Mike Michalowicz
    MasterClass episode with Sara Blakely
    Divine Design

    What Lisa learned from hitting financial rock bottom
    Lisa grew up in a blue-collar family in a small town in Florida. She had what she needed, but she didn’t have a lot. Her family never talked about money. So when she started her business, she avoided conversations about money. But she notes that passion only gets you so far. She couldn’t ignore it anymore. 

    She was going through a divorce, trying to stand on her own two feet, but she couldn’t. She went to Africa on a sort of “Eat, Pray, Love” sabbatical. It was the experience of a lifetime. But a lack of confidence coupled with poor financial management culminated in the perfect storm. Lisa logged into her bank account and realized it was empty. That was the moment she realized she needed to get her life together. 

    Becoming a multi-million-dollar interior design firm in 10 years
    A close friend introduced Lisa to Profit First, which quickly changed her mindset about money. It took Lisa 3–4 months to recover from rock bottom. Thankfully, she’s never had a shortage of clients, so she was able to put her nose to the grindstone and implement Profit First quickly. It was a painful process. But she dug them out of debt and started saving money. 

    Her experience forced her to look at her business as what it could be. It needed to be her livelihood. She had to get uncomfortable with money and learn to understand profit margins. And once she focused on a Profit First mentality, her confidence grew as a female leader and business owner.

    She was no longer intimidated. She sat in front of her wealthy clients with confidence and knew she could provide what they needed and make a great living. 

    The changes Lisa made to her pricing structure to achieve growth
    Lisa raised her hourly rate to $275 an hour and now requires a higher retainer up front so clients have skin in the game. They need to be invested. She can say without hesitation that it turned her business around. She emphasizes that if you allow yourself to face your fea

    • 43 min
    Why Interior Designers Need Ongoing SEO to Remain Competitive - Episode 274

    Why Interior Designers Need Ongoing SEO to Remain Competitive - Episode 274

    Why is SEO so critical for your brand’s online presence?

    How does it help you compete with other interior designers? Why is ongoing SEO the key to keeping your interior design business ranking on Google?

    The biggest piece of misinformation that we hear about SEO is that it’s a “one-and-done” service that’s complete when your website is created. That couldn’t be further from the truth. Ongoing SEO, when done correctly, is your key to remaining competitive. Gavin—Wingnut’s resident SEO guru—covers this important topic in this episode of Wingnut Social!

    What You’ll Hear On This Episode of Wingnut Social
    [1:25] Wingnut Webinar 7/28 at 11 am EST: SEO 101
    [2:50] Subscribe to Wingnut Social on YouTube!
    [3:40] Mini News Sesh: Instagram Reel update
    [7:42] Learn all about our SEO guru Gavin
    [8:45] SEO isn’t “set it and forget it”
    [13:30] Google’s algorithm and SEO
    [17:42] The importance of recency and activity
    [21:54] Tools and resources to leverage for SEO
    [24:10] Ongoing SEO is the key to your business’s success

    Resources & People Mentioned
    Wingnut Webinar: 7/28 at 11 am EST: SEO 101
    Wingnut Academy: Instagram for Interior Designers
    Record your podcast episodes on Riverside
    Wingnut Social is on YouTube! 

    How ongoing SEO can boost your business
    When your website is created and SEO-optimized, you can’t just set it and forget it. You can’t just run ads and call it good. Why? 80% of people searching on Google ignore paid ads. Secondly, most people won’t go past the first page of search results. So your business needs to be ranked in the top 10 search results.

    How do you achieve that? You have to track and measure the impact of your work and adjust your SEO continuously. You can make adjustments as you go to make sure your pages stay on the first page of Google’s search results. 

    Your competition’s SEO tactics are constantly changing. If you’re ranking for a keyword and it falls from #2 to #10, you need to make some adjustments or you’ll lose traffic. If your competition is ranking for keywords that you used to rank for, changes need to be made. 

    That’s why a robust and ongoing SEO strategy can mean the difference between being flooded with clients—or being irrelevant. 

    Your clients have questions—make sure you provide the answers
    When it comes to blogging, people think they need to produce a chunk of new content once a month and they’re okay. Gavin points out that blogging is a great strategy and you need to do it. However, you have to keep in mind that Google is trying to connect people who have questions with the answers they’re looking for. 

    5–10 years ago, people would stuff keywords into a blog and rank for it. Google is now an intelligent platform that can’t be fooled. If you’re keyword stuffing, your content won’t rank. When you write content, focus on answering questions that your ideal client is searching for.

    What questions are they asking? How do YOU provide the best answer and share value? The keywords and phrases you use reflect your ability to understand your customer. If you have a great idea of what your customers are looking for and provide them value, you’ll see a bump in SEO. 

    What tools can you use to help you write SEO-optimized content? How does Google’s algorithm play a role in your success? Listen to the whole episode to learn more about ongoing SEO’s impact on your bottom line. 

    Connect With Darla & Wingnut Social
    www.WingnutSocial.com
    On Facebook
    On Twitter: @WingnutSocial
    On Instagram: @WingnutSocial
    Subscribe on YouTube
    Check out the Wingnut Social Media Lab Facebook Group!
    786-206-4331 (connect with us for your digital marketing needs)

    Subscribe to The Wingnut Social Podcast on iTunes, Google Podcasts, or TuneIn

    Audio Production and Show notes by
    PODCAST FAST TRACK
    https://www.podcastfasttrack.com

    • 28 min
    Perfecting Your Interior Design Niche - Episode 273

    Perfecting Your Interior Design Niche - Episode 273

    Anne Gillyard—along with Jodi Arellano—own and operate GrOH! Playrooms, specializing in educationally-based children’s interiors. They strive to create spaces full of color, joy, fun, and playfulness that encourage your child’s development. But how did they choose to niche down into something so specific? How have they built a thriving play-focused business? Anne joins Darla to discuss all things marketing, niching down, and incorporating play into your child’s every day.

    What You’ll Hear On This Episode of Wingnut Social
    [1:02] Subscribe to Wingnut Social on YouTube!
    [2:01] Mini News Sesh: YouTube Shorts
    [5:43] Learn all about Anne Gillyard
    [7:55] How Anne chose her interior design niche
    [12:39] How Anne reaches her ideal clients
    [16:01] The benefit of industry partnerships
    [22:36] How to choose work you enjoy
    [25:05] Tips for mastering reels and videos
    [28:55] The What Up Wingnut Round!

    Connect with Anne GillYard
    Connect on Instagram
    GrOH! Playrooms

    Resources & People Mentioned
    Mike Michalowicz’s books

    How Anne landed on a niche in playrooms
    Anne worked in early education for years as a teacher and curriculum designer. But her expertise is play. She always wanted to be an interior designer but never thought she’d land there. Now, she designs family rooms, playrooms, bedrooms, and outdoor spaces where the intention is to live, breathe, and move around with your kids. 

    When they launched GrOh!, they were worried they wouldn’t survive if they niched down too far. So if a client asked them to do something outside their scope, they quickly agreed to it. But it wasn’t where they thrived. Once they fully committed to their niche, they took off. Now they have a waitlist of 6+ months.

    How to choose your interior design niche
    Anne says to pour your favorite drink, get comfy, and spend some time thinking. What lights your fire? What takes the least amount of energy to brainstorm about? When you complete a project, what are you proud of? How can you make your experience special? What can you do to make your relationship with your client wonderful and easy? 

    Reflect after every project and determine what you enjoyed—and what you didn’t. What did you find to be easiest? Anne once created a gorgeous custom kitchen, designed to help create independence for kids. While the project was a smashing success, they didn’t enjoy the work. Now, they only focus on what they love. 

    How GrOH! Reaches their ideal clients
    In December 2019, GrOH! had committed to only doing commercial spaces. A few months later, because of covid, no one was going to commercial play spaces—maybe ever again. So they pivoted to residential spaces. Word-of-mouth wasn’t a possibility at that point. So what marketing stuck?

    They invested in photography immediately. Then they hired social media out to professionals (Wingnut Social, of course) and the change was transformative. It’s allowed them to niche and establish themselves as go-to experts. Since then, 99% of their clients find them through social media.

    And Anne is a social media genius. Her content is eye-catching, playful, and educational all while perfectly showcasing their designs. How has she found such social success (aside from Wingnut Social, of course)? She shares her tricks of the trade in this episode. Don’t miss it!

    Connect With Darla & Wingnut Social
    www.WingnutSocial.com
    On Facebook
    On Twitter: @WingnutSocial
    On Instagram: @WingnutSocial
    Subscribe on YouTube
    Darla’s Interior Design Website
    Check out the Wingnut Social Media Lab Facebook Group!
    786-206-4331 (connect with us for your social media marketing needs)

     

    Subscribe to The Wingnut Social Podcast on iTunes, Google Podcasts, or TuneIn

    Audio Production and Show notes by
    PODCAST FAST TRACK
    https://www.podcastfasttrack.com

    • 31 min
    The Secret to Getting Your Interior Design Work Published - Episode 272

    The Secret to Getting Your Interior Design Work Published - Episode 272

    Molly Schoneveld is the award-winning PR strategist behind the luxury public relations firm, The Storied Group. She represents the industry's top interior designers, celebrities, and hotels, i.e. “Talented faces, spaces, and places.” She has 20+ years of experience with press placements in Architectural Digest, ELLE Decor, Vogue, and more. And she knows the secret to getting your interior design work published. What is it? Find out in this episode of the Wingnut Social podcast!

    What You’ll Hear On This Episode of Wingnut Social
    [1:13] Wingnut webinar and wingnut academy updates
    [1:56] Mini News Sesh: LinkedIn’s repost update
    [4:32] Learn all about Molly Schoneveld + The Storied Group
    [7:08] Why proving publications enough images is important 
    [10:56] Do you need to hire a photographer with connections?
    [16:06] Can a presence on YouTube help you?
    [17:21] Do you need to have a celebrity client? 
    [20:15] Why you need to read photography contracts carefully
    [23:16] Can you post the photos online if you want them featured?
    [26:22] Make your photography stand out by using a stylist
    [28:50] How to get your clients on board with being published
    [33:46] How to stand out (and get hired by celebrities) 
    [38:20] The What Up Wingnut! Round
    [40:26] How to connect with Molly Schoneveld

    Connect with Molly Schone
    The Storied Group
    Connect with Molly on LinkedIn
    Follow Molly on Instagram

    Resources & People Mentioned
    The Mystery Guest by Lorin Stein
    Record your podcast episodes on Riverside
    This is Marketing by Seth Godin

    The secret to getting your interior design work published
    What’s the secret? It all comes down to photos. Now—likely starting with Covid—many magazines will not do reshoots. What you provide them in your pitch is what will get published. So you need to give them enough photos to publish a full story. Luxe Magazine has design features that can be as long as 10–12 pages. That’s why you need to provide a variety of photos. 

    But Molly emphasizes that you don’t need the best photographer in the business. Why? You need to be able to afford someone who will provide you with a full range of images. What does that look like? If you want to get featured as a full home tour, you need 25–30 images of your work. 

    Molly landed one of her clients a feature in AD Digital. It was the home of a celebrity chef and a big-name interior designer. They didn’t reshoot the project. The photos Molly sent them were the photos that ran. The bar is high, and if you want to get into AD, you’ve got to be so much more than good. The photos you send must be shot knowing they’re going to be run in the magazine. 

    Do you need to hire a photographer with connections?
    Molly points out that working with a specific photographer who has previously done work with the magazine you want to get published in can give you an advantage. But the advantage isn’t that the photographer can get you published—it’s that they know what the magazine is looking for. They understand the angles publications like, the styling they like, and the vignettes they prefer. Those are the things a photographer can help with. 

    But a magazine won’t say yes to a project solely based on the photographer. There are factors at play that are 100% out of your control, like editorial calendars, previously published homes and kitchens, and much more. But you can control your images. So work with a photographer who understands what magazines are looking for. 

    Make your photography stand out by using a stylist
    Look at a potential photographer's social media. What is their aesthetic? That’s what you’ll end up with for your social media. What else is important? Molly believes that bringing in a stylist to bring life to your images makes the biggest difference. Magazines do this all the time. If magazine editors rely on them, designers should see them as someone who can bring their vision to life in a different way. That—coupled with a p

    • 42 min

Customer Reviews

5.0 out of 5
251 Ratings

251 Ratings

Kathleen Jennison ,

Kathleen

Darla always makes me think and laugh!! The information is always spot on and seems to address my current pain point. Timely and true. Thank you

@kimstewinspired ,

Balancing marketing & family

I love hearing how interior designers can build their businesses online, and especially enjoyed Darla’s episode with Amber Hawley on balancing business and marriage.
Kim Stewart, outreach exec, angietrueblood.com

C Gromer ,

Puts the fun back in business

I love how Darla has taken the stuffiness out of business ownership and shows up as herself and still has killer content and business information to share. She makes interviews fun and interesting. Great listen!

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