Recently I was pouring over pages of homes listed with real estate agents, with the purpose of looking for homes in which we could photograph some of our new products in the upcoming catalogue and website updates. I was taken back by the lack of what I would call personal fit. Let me explain that a little better.
In other words, there was nothing in the shots that reflected any personality.
From shot to shot of styled-by-professionals to photos of the home owners own furnishings bored me.
It was home after home of Scandi retro and modern square club sofas.
Now don’t get me wrong, I am not wanting to insult anybody’s personal taste; however, when it comes to some styling performed by a “stylist” I viewed the same pattern and in many cases the same furniture used in 3-4 different homes in different locations. Why is this I asked? Well if I look at what’s available in the retail stores; Store after store, with the exception of a few better end stores, had the same look and offered very little variations that would suit an older home for example.
I had a sense that I was being made to conform to the norm. After visiting many of the major furniture retail stores around Brisbane and the Gold Coast I almost felt sad, but then I realized I was just plain bored with what was on offer.
However, there are some shining lights and these are smaller businesses that don’t have the marketing spend to spread the word so to speak.
Before we started Echo Grove, we embarked on some serious market research in order to understand what this market, that is already saturated, was missing. Personality was one, as unless I walked into a high-end design retail store, they had very little range on offer. Why should these few stores be the domain of style and design when most cannot afford such luxury?
As an Interior designer I had access to so much more than what I would find in a retail store. It was my job to understand my client’s personality and taste in order to convert that into their own space that reflected who they are as individuals. But how is a consumer without access to these products going to be able to do the same thing when the product being sold is what the retailer wants you to buy? Products that they have had to buy a container of to get the deal! Product that the supplier told them is what the consumer wants. And there you have it, that is what is available.
Frustrated by the ordinary, and excited by a fresh new approach to furniture retail, both in store and online, the design team at Echo Grove wanted to bring a neoteric and unique approach to our ranges and to how we display our products. The question was asked by team leaders, “how do we create a better customer experience?”. The answer was simple; “Give them something to talk about”.
Furnishing your home is a reflection of your personalities, what your furniture reveals about you is a unique sense of style, even your own sense of eclecticism. It is often hard to reflect your own style when the options available are part of the same style mouse wheel, evidenced by the same-same splash we see on our real estate websites daily.
The most refreshing thing we hear from new customers walking in our doors for the very first time is “wow, where have you guys been!”. Now it is time for you to do the same and see what we are talking about.