Last night I had the pleasure of attending a networking event held by Houzz at CB2 in Miami. If you are not familiar with Houzz, it is a community of home owners and home industry professionals exchanging ideas, experiences and tips.
When I arrived, they had us register and fill out a card to win a raffle, as well as register for a CB2 Designer Rewards program that includes a 10% off discount. For the night only, they extended a 15% discount. After registration, there was a light networking time with some hors d’ouevres and white wine.
Houzz’s presentation opened up with a brief history of Houzz and a testimonial video. Houzz was founded in 2009 by a husband and wife who were seeking an easier, more streamlined process to renovate their home. Within a year, the site grew so big they were able to quit their job to work full time on it.
Houzz now has 14 million users, 6 million ipad/iphone app downloads with 70K views and a 5 star rating, as well as 1.2 million high quality images. Designers upload about 3K images a day and homeowners add about 700K images to their Ideabooks per day. (If you look really closely in the picture below on the right, you might spot my hand or my nose.)
They also revealed some results of a homeowner study they conducted with over 200,000 respondents. Below are some stats they shared with us.
In Miami specifically:
- 87% are homeowners, average age is 49, average household income $120K, average home value $472K
- Only 26% are in their first home
- In the next two years, 74% are planning to decorate or redecorate, 42% are planning to remodel or build an addition, 7% are planning to build a custom home
- Also in the next two years, 50% are planning to hire a general contractor, 25% an architect, 21% an interior designer, among other home professionals
- 44% of Miami homeowners went over budget on their last renovation project, and 14% had no budget specified at all.
- 83% said improving the look/feel/flow/functionality was an important motivation behind their projects, while only 43% cited increasing home value
- Biggest challenges for Houzzers when it comes to renovation & design? Finding the right products and defining their style – a marketing opportunity for all pros on Houzz.
(I’ve got the national stats in case you want to peek at them). We also learned that 68% of respondents reported getting their information and ideas from Houzz and other online sites. Only 11% reported magazine and 9% reported word of mouth as the source.
Other tidbits included the fact that clients start early when hunting for professionals, that they want a 360 view of the companies they plan to work with, and that you can influence how your brand is perceived by controlling the brand images and identity that you present to your audience. One of their Best of Houzz 2013 design team recommended having a creative and professional photographed profile image to help attract attention. Houzz also suggested doing a 3 question, 30 second screening for potential customers and clients that come to you from the network to make sure you have the right fit. One thing I also learned was that you could add green tags onto images and add products onto the site to sell to the designers who need the suppliers and manufacturers.
Toward the end of the event, I did some more valuable networking. (Much to my dismay, I did not win the raffle prize. But hey, you can’t win them all. I am generally lucky at prize winning. Last event I went to, I won a Vietnamese Pearl Necklace.)
Overall it was a pretty cool event and I am glad they shared the results of their survey. As a marketing coordinator, it is very helpful to know more about your audience. Anyone else attend the event? Know of any other cool events we should attend? Share them below in a comment.
Well known award winning kitchen designer Julia Johnston (who also spoke at the Tour of Kitchens event I also attended) recommended that the kitchen categories be broken up differently and have more representations of styles and trends. Houzz reported that they segment based on what people are searching for on the site.