The Home Staging & ReDesign Publication | September Issue

Page 1

COVER PHOTO COURTESY OF: EURO STAGING | FAIRFAX, VA

___ THE WHY BEHIND AUTOMATION PAGE 08

___

___

EXPERIENCE BREAKTHROUGH IN YOUR BUSINESS PAGE 12

DESIGN TRENDS FOR THIS SEASON PAGE 27


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CONTENT INSIDE THIS ISSUE

5

FROM THE DESK OF JANA USELTON

8

THE WHY BEHIND AUTOMATION

12

EXPERIENCE BREAKTHROUGH IN YOUR BUSINESS

16

KEEPING YOUR DIGITAL MARKETING HUMMING PT.2

20

HSRA MEMBER SPOTLIGHT

27

DESIGN TRENDS

Strength in numbers

HSRA Digital Coordinator: Jill Johnson

HSRA Fearless Founder: Jana Uselton

HSRA Digital Assistant: Ramon Reyes

Hana Latyn | Euro Staging

HSRA Interior Designer Sueann Badillo | Moxie Design Group

Book of the Month NINJA SELLING

SUBTLE SKILLS. BIG RESULTS Book by Larry Kendall



JanaUselton FROM THE DESK OF:

Greetings! We hope this season in your personal and professional life has been new, fresh, and full of expectations. We are all

on

this

journey

together

and

figuring out what the next is for us. Sometimes our days begin with the same routine, but now more than ever, there are new focuses and distractions all around us. The worry, the fear, the stress can overtake us if we are not careful. The last year and a half have shown us many things. It has proven our

resilience,

our

fortitude,

5

and

pushed

us

into

uncomfortable

territory.

The

past

rhythms

and

It starts with asking the questions.

routines were disrupted and we are

In our publication this month, we

creating new ones daily.

address multiple topics that relate to you, your teams, and your business.

Take an assessment of where you were

Moving forward, we know there is

before and where you are now.

strength

in

numbers.

There

are

solutions in numbers. There’s new What has changed around you?

hope and strategy when we are doing

How have you changed?

this

How has your family changed?

another year over year.

together

and

supporting

one

How has your business changed? How has your team changed?

When we set out on the journey to

How have your clients changed?

create HSRA, we didn’t know what it

How have your services changed?

would look like. This may be true about your

own

business.

It’s

grown,

When we ask questions like this and we

morphed,

dig deep for answers, we find solutions

expectations

and gain new hope that we are on the

relationships and the difference made

right track.

in others and ourselves.

and in

exceeded the

form

our of


As we all continue to evolve and grow, let’s also continue to support one

another

daily

as

changes arise all around us. When we are part of the

solution,

we

can

never be part of the problem. As the end of this

year

approaches,

let's celebrate together! Here’s to the coming of an incredible end to an unprecedented year and here’s to looking forward to an incredible future together! Blessings

STRONGER


TOGETHER


THE WHY BEHIND AUTOMATION IMPORTANCE


JILL JOHNSON DIGITAL COORDINATOR

Hello September! I don’t know about you but I am ready for the “fluffy socks and cute sweaters” season which is coming up SO fast. With this season rolling around, I can’t help but pair it with strategy and end-of-year reviews, as I’m sure many of you do the same. With strategy coming up in the next few months, I am thinking about all of the different things that have been done this year within HSRA and Model My Home. The biggest one, and my favorite, has to be implementing automation to the next level. When thinking about a Staging business and automation, it can sometimes seem almost impossible, or maybe you’re thinking “What would I even automate?” All of your marketing, sales, reporting, admin duties - can all be automated, but that is not what I will be getting into in this article. In this month's article, I want to share the importance and the “why” behind automation, other than it being a huge gamechanger…


Before getting into this, please note that

Improved Consistency:

there are many different platforms, programs, CRMs (my favorite is HubSpot

This comes back to human and manual

BTW), etc., that can make automation

labor. Instead of having to go search

easy. Some are free and some are paid.

for that template that was created to

There is a bit of legwork that must be

send to someone that has a specific

done when setting up your automation.

service they want to be completed, it’s

Make sure to leave a full day for setting

as easy as having to push only 1 button

up automation if you don’t have any

or click on one thing that will then send

setup already. It will take some time and

them out that service quote, all while

brain work.

still

being

consistent

with

your

verbiage and service descriptions. So, what is the WHY behind the importance of automation:

Your Employees Will Love You Even More:

Becoming More Efficient: Manual tasks can get brain-boggling, This one is a given. When implementing

repetitive, and some are just downright

automation, you will be reducing time

stressful or boring. When automation

and effort. It will also reduce human and

is set up, it allows your employees to

manual errors that sometimes take

continue on doing their highest and

place,

your

best in the company with peace and

employees and yourself more time to

ease knowing there is a little robot

focus on the priority tasks to complete.

doing

which

in

turn,

gives

all

of

the

work

on

the

automation end of things. Time-Saving: Your Clients Will Love You Even Just like the above states, your time will

More:

be almost cut in half or more when it comes to not having to remember to

When your team is happy and at ease,

send out that “thank you for submitting a

that allows them to put their energy

quote” email or having that new lead

and

inputted manually into your CRM - they

service. Your team is able to aid in

will already be there with everything you

boosting

need to know.

which then leads to referrals and so on!

effort

into

the

amazing

customer

customer satisfaction


As our world is becoming more and more tech-driven, we have to be sure we are staying up to date with things and not just going the “old school” route. Don’t get me wrong, I love my pencil and paper, but when times get busier and days get packed fuller and fuller, you are going to want something or someone able to get the repetitive tasks done without having to think about it. As we close out with this article, there are 2 programs or platforms that I wanted to share with you that are my 2 favorites for automation: 1. HubSpot - literally the best CRM there is. It is perfect for everything, from sales to marketing, to handling your processes and procedures. 2. Zapier - If you haven’t heard of Zapier, it is a must-have tool. Many of us probably have multiple different programs or apps that we use in our business and don’t you wish there was a way to connect them all. Zapier has got your back! Now that you know the WHY behind it, next up we’ll learn the HOW! Stay tuned for next month to find out my favorite tips and tricks.


Experience Breakthrough in your Business ENDURANCE, ENCOURAGEMENT, ENERGY, AND EXCITEMENT BY: JANA USELTON

We just received a message from a Realtor letting us know the the seller received a lower Staging price from another company and decided to go with them. Have you ever received a message like this? How about this one? “So sorry to let you know at the last minute. The property sold yesterday, and they’ve moved all of your furniture to the garage. We received an offer so quickly and forgot to call you.” Or, “I need to turn in my notice today.” Someone you have invested time, energy, effort and money into is now ready to turn their back on you and the business and move on.

Any and all of these situations can get us down, frustrated, and discouraged. So, what do we do when we face obstacles that seem to pile up on each other? How do we handle objections, challenges, and the continued pressure of day-to-day business and life? Our answers are multifaceted. First, we go back to our roots. Why are we in this business in the first place? What do we love about this industry? Why do people need our services? We, personally, believe in letting go and letting God do the miraculous through our businesses.


When we have this perspective, it forces us to release unmet expectations from others and especially ourselves. We can’t do it all nor can we expect it all from others. We can do only what we can do. If you need more done, you must let go of something or hire more people. The choice is yours. At both HSRA and Model My Home, we have chosen to hire more people and open new opportunities so others can be part of the big picture we are painting. When you give others opportunities to partner together, the miraculous can happen. All of the sudden, your focus is on growth, not lack. You don’t have time for the negative. You don’t have time for drama. If it does not align with your core values and your purpose, you immediately move on. I’ve noticed this mindset in other high-impact people we have met recently in the last 5 years. They are not about wasting time, they’re not about being pulled in different directions or anything else that may distract them. They are full-time forward focused on continuous improvement and growth. It is an entirely different level than I experienced in my early years as a business owner. What makes these high achievers so accountable? They have a relentless determination and the discipline to influence and impact others for the greater good.


It’s hard to put these concepts in a practical sense but let me try. Here are the early situations you have or will face.

THE CLIENT WHO DOESN’T WANT TO PAY YOUR PRICES.

THE CLIENT THAT MOVED THE YOUR ITEMS TO THE GARAGE.

THE TEAM MEMBER WHO DECIDES TO LEAVE.

No problem, let’s figure out a

No problem, we will have to

No problem, you bless them

payment plan or add more

charge our Rush Removal fee

on the way out. Speak into

services that help them see

and will be taking pictures of

them and let them know how

the value in what we do.

items in place to ensure

much

there are no damages.

contribution. Hopefully, your

you

appreciate

their

company has also deposited greatness in them as well.

Remember the client who doesn’t want to pay your price? No problem, let’s figure out a payment plan or add more services that help them see the value in what we do. The client who calls you last minute because the property has already sold and they’ve moved the items to the garage. No problem, we will have to charge our Rush Removal fee and will be taking pictures of items in place to ensure there are no damages. Client, we know you understand we have our policies and procedures to protect our inventory and our business. Being clear and concise on our agreements is vital. Before situations get to this point though, we are letting them know about our Destage Process in the agreement, with a Quick Reminders follow-up email as a bullet point after the agreement is signed and services are paid. Then, a call or email every two weeks to find out how the property is showing. It is as much our responsibility to know when a property is under contract as our clients. We always play offense until we have to play defense.


And when team members decide to leave, No problem, you bless them on the way out. Speak into them and let them know how much you appreciate their contribution. Hopefully, your company has also deposited greatness in them as well. We never try to hold on to people that feel like they have been released from the company. If it is a situation about money, we may be able to step in with some solutions, however, once someone decides to decommit, it is difficult for them to recommit. Know that people will join your team for seasons and some for a lifetime. Those who invest their time, energy, and effort on the beginning level of growth will be part of making history with your company and should be rewarded for doing so. They are not only growing professionally and financially but personally as well. High achievers experience breakthrough day after day. They also invest their time with others who are at their level or greater. Know that it takes endurance to continue to run the race. You must replenish and recharge so you have the energy you need. Encourage one another on this journey and make sure you are not involved or around distraction or drama. Recognize those in your world that are and distance yourself. When we begin levels of high achievement and start seeing the difference it is making and the new people we are becoming, excitement is in the air. People love to be excited about something, and it is our goal to create those opportunities for excitement. If you’re lacking in any of these, get vertically aligned so you can also be horizontally aligned with others. Continue to run the race with energy and excitement. You’ll find the people you are running this race with are there to also encourage and help you succeed. The goal at the end of the day for all of us is to influence and impact others through our lives and our businesses.

Keep Running… Others are counting on you!


Keep Your Digital Marketing Thingmajig Humming. Have you ever had that unforgettable

Why looks matter

date where everything was perfect?

No one wants to look shabby in front

Maybe the stars were out, and the

of visitors. You want to look well put

night

was

together. That is web aesthetics, the

dreamy. The words heard and spoken

confluence of color, font, and design

were just memorable.

elements

was

warm.

Your

date

experience

that in

affect your

the

user

website.

Come down to earth, honey. It never

Professional aesthetics will make your

happens, but the experience of a first-

website very appealing to visitors. They

time visitor on your website should

will stay on-site longer and increase

feel like that date -- albeit with your

the chances of discovering the relevant

digital persona.

details of your staging business. You want to engage with them, hence the

Like any date, perfection is the goal

term engagement (frequently used in

because you want the "getting to

digital marketing).

know you" phase to end with getting a lead. On the web, like in real life --

Design and color.

looks matter, and words are far-

So let's talk colors and brands. Most of

reaching.

us associate a brand with color.


For example, we will always expect the

All the elements that make up your

Coca-cola

and

website design, like the menu, fonts,

McDonald's is yellow. We know that

content, and graphics (boxes, lines, bars),

something is wrong if Home Depot is

must be colored by the 60-30-10 rule.

logo

to

be

red,

blue. The design is [in most cases] the basis for Color selection is based on values and

a snap judgment of your brand or staging

attitudes. For example, HSRA's shade of

ability. Every visitor has that tendency. In a

red tells of the passion of its members for

study by the University of Surrey, 75% of

home staging.

visitors

made

snap

decisions

about

credibility based on the web design. Have you identified your brand color, and most importantly, do you know why it is

Words are crucial

your color?

Words (others refer to it as messaging) are crucial.

Snap Decisions Your brand colors will combine with a few

Have you ever noticed how good friends

other colors to make up the color scheme

talk? It may be at a noisy bar or while

of your web design.

strolling a busy street. Between good friends, the conversation is always lively,

The

frequently

used

rule

for

color

with heaps of positive vibes. Even the tiny

schemes is the 60–30–10 Rule. Everyone

facial expressions confirm that they are

knows this-- 60% of the color scheme

full-on engaged with each other.

(palette) is for one color (on the web, a neutral color), 30% is complementary, 10% is used for accents (for example, bars and lines)


Talk to your visitor as you would your

As an example, COVID, regardless of

friend.

a

your views, everyone is affected by it.

conversation with a friend. Try to

There might be people visiting your

avoid too much sales talk.

site--some coming off Google search.

You

don't

overpower

For sure, they have seen the COVID Engagement is the whole point of

statements of other companies. Crisis

your digital marketing thingmajig.

management is a good indicator of a

You do it by the words and the

well-managed company. Why are

images and videos you use.

they not seeing your statement?

The former, however, will be pivotal

Craft the messaging, engagement will

to persuading your visitor to become

follow.

a client. You can also set aside a blog section Even with a fully developed website,

and write content related to promos,

you need to review your message

holidays, and more. Blogs are the best

periodically.

and

way to increase domain authority.

circumstances happen and disrupt

Omg, what is that? That is Google's

life and the way we do business. You

fancy-schmancy way of saying -- hey

must have some discussion (content)

business owner, update your website

about this on your website.

often if you want it to rank high.

Current

events


Placing a comment section allows you to chat up your visitors. Google interprets every new comment as an update that positively affects your web ranking. Do fonts matter? Absolutely. The fonts you use on your

Do not assume anything. Clear your mind must be. - Yoda

website reflect the character of your business and the brand psyche. Do you use serif fonts? You are telling visitors that you are traditional and reliable. San Serif fonts like Helvetica suggests modernity and style. In her book,

Why

Hyndman

Fonts said

Matter,

that

fonts

Sarah have

different personalities that evoke trust or make a product taste better. Mix and match fonts so you look yummy to visitors. Design theory suggests you can use up to three font types.

include their professional license or certificates (certs) on their resumes. The same kind of distinction and prestige is placed on your business if you

display

certs,

affiliations,

or

awards, if any, on your website. You gain a clear advantage over your colleague or competitor. No cert? HSRA course, and certificates are issued

Every Star Wars fan saw how Yoda tested Skywalker to near breaking point. On your website, you need to find the breaking point, if any. Yoda did say, “do not assume anything. Clear your mind must be."

whereafter. The real work begins after you build it. My father once told me that when the work is finally done, the other work— the real work—begins and continues.

In other words, your should test thoroughly. Every link should work. If you use a map, make sure you have a working link to the provider (like Google Maps). Sometimes the map can go blank, which is indicative of a cookie

Job recruiters usually favor people who

offers Designations. It is a short

Test always, young padawan.

browser

Display your certs on the website

issue.

Most

importantly, if you use a fill-up form, it should store every information. Many promising lead conversions go bust just because of a failed fill-up form.

The web construction project may be over but, now the maintenance of it begins. Also, do not forget the other half

of

your

digital

marketing

thingmajig-- the social media baby. If you want it to grow, it will need some tender loving care. But, that is a topic for another time..

Ramon R.


MEMBER SPOTLIGHT

HanaLatyn

TELL US A LITTLE ABOUT YOURSELF AND WHERE YOU ARE IN BUSINESS TODAY. Hey! I’m Hana, the owner of Euro Staging LLC, servicing Virginia, Maryland, and Washington DC. I am originally from the Czech Republic. Besides Home Staging, I love to ride motorcycles with my hubby, travel, climb trees, mix music, and paint large canvases. 2021 is my 11Th year in the Home Staging business!



TELL US A LITTLE ABOUT YOURSELF

In addition to running errands, my job

AND WHERE YOU ARE IN BUSINESS

was to deliver furniture, hang wall art,

TODAY.

or add cute pillows. One day I asked, “Lisa, what am I doing?” She said,

My beginnings in 2010 were more than

“Hana, you are Staging.” That’s how

humble: Divorced and living with two

Stager Hana was “born”.

small kids in a tiny basement apartment in Arlington, VA. I couldn’t return back

It’s been a long and exciting journey

“home”

complicated

that started with picking up free stuff

divorce lawsuit, so I had to quickly

off the curb, occasional dumpster-

transition from stay-at-home mom to

diving,

earning money to provide for my children.

stores…to

because

of

my

or

scouting now

a

local

Goodwill

beautiful

3,000

square foot warehouse full of nice To

survive,

I

cleaned

houses,

sold

furniture,

an

18-foot

truck

we

refrigerators in K-Mart, and watched

affectionately called “Snow White”, and

children. For a while, we even lived on

seven amazing employees.

food stamps and the generosity of friends.

My point is: if a foreigner with no formal

education

and

big

Then I received a position as an office

challenges can make it - EVERYONE

assistant for a local RE/MAX agent (and

can!

now a dear friend) Lisa DuBois.



HAS COVID CHANGED YOUR BUSINESS? Last

year

we

unexpected

all

turn

went when

through the

an

Covid

pandemic hit. For a short period of time, I was worried if my business would fold. I feared that events and forces beyond my control would wipe out instantly all those years of hard work. We had to adapt to the new

12 DAYS OF CHRISTMAS CAMPAIGN

‘normal."

Our biggest challenge was to keep my team, my family, and our clients safe and healthy. As all the other businesses, we implemented all necessary precautions and procedures. The second problem we faced was a crazy hot market with low listing inventory: properties selling fast without being Staged. This required different marketing strategies that would bring more business and more clients. Following the HSRA coaching advice, I came up with the “12 Days Of Christmas” campaign. And it turned out to be one of the most successful promotions we’ve ever done.


We used social media posts, pictures, and videos to connect with our existing clients as well as new potential agents. Every day we raffled out nice holiday gifts like gift baskets, gift cards, or wine sets. We made short daily videos to announce winners and posted them on all social platforms. We then personally delivered all the gifts, took pictures, and posted them again on all our social media. It was wonderful to give back to all those clients who have been supporting our business over the years. This campaign not only brought new business, but also created plenty of good will and authentic human connections, so sorely missed during these challenging times.

We

keep

adapting

and

changing, and as a result, Euro Staging keeps growing. We are moving

to

warehouse more

team

a this

new,

bigger

fall,

hiring

members,

and

getting a second truck. We are also opening VON HOUSE – a new boutique store selling home accessories and gifts. The most exciting part is that my daughter, Lilly, will be my business partner.


WHAT ADVICE WOULD YOU GIVE

WHAT SUGGESTIONS DO YOU HAVE

SOMEONE STARTING OUT?

ON MANAGING INVENTORY AT AN EARLY PHASE AND MOVING TO A

1. Start with the right mindset. There

MORE SEASONED BUSINESS?

are plenty of opportunities, if others have succeeded, so can you.

Start simple and start early. Even if it's a basic Excel sheet or a phone app. Good

2. Educate yourself. There is plenty of

inventory systems can help you generate

good free information on YouTube.

more rental income. It will also speed up

Follow other good Stagers on

your Staging process and help you

Instagram (#EuroStaging ;), read good

determine when it’s time to purchase

business books, and listen to podcasts

more items.

instead of binging on TV. Inventory management was not my 3. Do GDP!!! HSRA’s Growth

priority when I started. This was a big

Development Program has helped the

mistake that cost us time and potential

growth of my business tremendously.

rental income.

4. Be patient. Entrepreneurship is not a

Our plan is to fix it while moving into our

sprint. It will take time and work (and

new warehouse this fall. We will be using

occasional long nights and weekends)

the Stageforce inventory system because

for you to build your dream business.

it was created by Stagers for Stagers.

5. Be persistent. There will be victories

HOW ABOUT SOME ADVICE FOR THE

and there will be defeats. Each

PERSON DOING MOST EVERYTHING

challenge also means an opportunity to

IN THEIR BUSINESS?

learn and grow. Stay with it. In

the

beginning,

we

all

start

as

6. Stay flexible and adapt. You may be

solopreneurs wearing all the hats.

tired of ‘pivoting’, but the business –

There is nothing wrong with running your

and the world is constantly changing.

own shop solo.

You have to keep up and evolve as well. But if you want to grow, there will come a 7. Balance. Yes, for a driven

point to delegate. My biggest challenges

entrepreneur, Work & Life balance is

were to let go, give up control, and find

impossible. Do the best you can. In

the right people.

addition to your business, remember to include your family, your health, and your time to recharge.


It is liberating to hand off things you

Master the art of listening. Some of our

dread to do, or you’re not good at.

“unhappy” clients turned out to be

Focus on your strengths. What are you

extremely thankful in the end. Selling a

great at? Do more of that.

Delegate

home and moving is number three on

activities that do not generate you

biggest stress factors in life, right next

direct income or enjoyment. As I LOVE

to divorce or the death of a loved one.

to say “Teamwork Is The Dream Work”

Be kind. Never assume. Communicate. Listen.

HOW ABOUT EXTRA HELP? If you have kids, put them to work. Growing up I saw my parents hustling and building a business from their garage - and turning it into a busy shop in a prime location of my hometown. Our children learn from observation and if you give them a chance early, they

can

become

a

part

of

your

success. My kids are actively involved in Euro Staging. They help with assembling furniture, repairing damaged inventory,

ANY LAST-MINUTE ADVICE FOR OUR

Staging, running errands, editing videos,

MEMBERS?

marketing, social media… And, yes, they get paid.

Stay flexible! Because: “It is not the strongest of species that survive, not

WHAT

ARE

SOME

LESSONS

LEARNED?

the most intelligent, but the one most responsive to change.” Charles Darwin Always remember WHY you started this

Never give up. Failure is a lesson in

(sometimes)

lonely

journey

of

an

disguise. Pain from failure can help you

Entrepreneur. For me it was survival,

if you are willing to learn.

which also means Path to A Better Life.


DESIGN (& ReDesign) tips with

Design Trends Trends

are

constantly

evolving

The addition of an accent wall has the

especially in interior design. A few

ability to soften a design as well as

current interior design trends of 2021

strengthen it. An accent wall has the

consist of using strong accent colors,

ability to impact the design by making

bold accent walls, and incorporating

a bold statement. Including an accent

curved statement pieces into a design.

wall can further your design in many different ways. There are a variety of

Incorporating a strong primary color

different ways that accent walls can be

against a muted, neutral palette has

created in a space. For example, the

become a popular trend. This trend

usage of interior paint, wallpaper, or

helps create balance and harmony

even decorative wood paneling can

within the space. The neutral tones

lead to a functional, successful, and

provide

trendy accent wall within a design.

warmth

and

comfort.

Meanwhile, the primary colors provide energy, liveliness, and animation. The

Curved statement pieces have become

additional

the

a current trend due to the impact the

space adds personality to the design.

specific pieces have within a design.

Neutral colors and primary colors

Curved

complement one another without one

movement and architectural design as

of the colors overpowering the other.

well as maintaining a soft and relaxed

This helps create a comforting contrast

space. Curves capture attention while

between

radiating clarity and freshness. Curved

color-infused

the

colors

within

within

the

environment.

statement

pieces

provide

statement pieces are an important factor in creating an original design.

Accent walls are a popular current

The unique, curved statement pieces

trend. The addition of an accent wall

add an element in the process of

leads

having the design tell its

to

more

opportunities

to

incorporate texture and warmth into a space.

own story.



ELEVATE YOUR HSRA MEMBERSHIP

ASHLEY FUENTES OWNER: STAGING THE NEST HSRA EXECUTIVE LEADER XL GROWTH MEMBERSHIP

I am so loving being a part of the XL Growth Membership program! During our last meeting, we did a high-level check on our business growth over last year and I am excited to share that Staging The Nest's revenue is up over 77% over last year - year to date! I am so proud of our amazing team!


DESIGNATIONS Register at: myhsra.com/designations


$9.99 Please place postage here

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