If you work for (or own) a residential architecture firm and you’ve been working hard to flex your social media muscles, you’ve more than likely given Houzz a shot. For those not in the know, Houzz is a social media platform focused entirely on residential design. It’s a great source of inspiration, ideas and dialogue – but one of the best aspects of it is that both professionals AND potential clients are active users. Homeowners looking for ideas, expertise and beautiful photography are very active, right alongside of some of the nation’s best architects, interior designers, contractors and landscape architects.

Of course, the tool is not an overnight rocket to widespread awareness for your firm. Over time though, with consistent interaction, more and more people will find your designs, interact with you and begin sharing your work.

Here are four ways to utilize your Houzz profile:

  • Use it for project inspiration. The “ideabooks” feature can be really useful from a billable standpoint, all while building your audience. Search through Houzz for ideas and inspiration when you’re looking for design solutions, finish ideas, unique entry ways, whatever.
  • Provide clients with more visuals. You can actually take this one step farther by using ideabooks FOR your clients. As you’re trying to sell a design or particular finish selection, you can create an ideabook just for that project and share the ideabook with your client to get their feedback and help paint the picture for them.
  • Interact via discussions. There are plenty of great discussion threads that can build your audience and credibility. Don’t be afraid to answer questions.
  • Continue to build the photo section. Put as many recent residential projects on there as you can and include descriptions. People search for things all the time and will begin asking you questions about certain products used, etc.

The fallout from an active Houzz presence can also include earned media, which is an added bonus in the social media world. With their own content and editorial team, Houzz actually recognizes popular designs/photos, features them in the blog and gives awards out annually. Increased mentions and attention turn directly into more web traffic and awareness for your firm. As with any successful online or social activity, it’s crucial to monitor and track as much of that success as possible with your web analytics.

Happy Houzzing!