When I look back at the person who started the journey to build this website, 2 and a half years ago I can’t help but shake my head and sigh. Oh, the naivety!
I was a web nerd (still am) with a post-baby style crisis (thankfully, now over) who found shopping at Westfield a bleak prospect. I loved the stuff I saw in Frankie and on The Design Files but I didn’t want to spend the 40 minute scraps of time I had to myself when my baby was sleeping, painstakingly looking for independent retail and design stores mentioned in previous articles and posts, searching for ‘dress’ on each one. I hear that’s some people’s idea of fun. Um, no thanks.
My perception was that the products that made it into these publications – the design blogs, the magazines that feature independent designers and retailers – were the VERY BEST stuff out there, the creme de la creme of things and stores that were launching and available at that moment in time.
I know now that that is not the case. The products and stores that end up on your fave blogs are not necessarily the best products and stores out there. They’re the products with the most professional and striking imagery, and the best pitch for that blog’s audience. In other words, the people behind them are the best at PR.
“My background in actually in public relations.”
“Interior stylist X has an eye for what looks good so it’s no surprise her new online store, launching today, is full of great treasures for your home.”
“Store X is the pet project of Melbourne-based stylist Y.”
I’ve read sentences like these in countless interviews with newly launched labels and stores featured by blogs and magazines over the past couple of years.
Frankly, sometimes, if you take away the artfully styled image, try to forget about the hot twin sisters behind the store that recently quit their jobs in PR at Vogue, and imagine the product on a shelf at Big W, you wouldn’t look twice at it. (I use this test to work out if I really like something. I try to imagine it sitting on a shelf at Myer and ask myself if I’d still want it. Recommended!)
Web-savvy PR people know how to pitch bloggers. Stylists know how to create beautiful images which design bloggers are literally gagging for, and are invaluable currency in the Instagram-addicted design scene.
How strong are your styling and photography skills? Do you know how to pitch a blog? (Hint: if you’re sending bloggers press releases you’re probably not giving yourself the best chance.)
If you need help with your photos, styling and pitching, don’t panic. You just need to call in the professionals, which may not be as expensive as you think… stay tuned!