ASID Design Solutions Showcase at the legendary Ansonia - NY, NY

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PR Partnering Case Study: The American Society of Interior Designers (ASID) sought to prove their members' skill at problem-solving difficult interior spaces. The Ansonia, a once grand apartment …

PR Partnering Case Study: The American Society of Interior Designers (ASID) sought to prove their members' skill at problem-solving difficult interior spaces. The Ansonia, a once grand apartment building on Manhattan's Upper West Side, was converting to luxury condominiums. Both ASID and the Ansonia were clients at Rubenstein Associates and we brought them together to produce an extraordinary month-long designer showcase that featured ingenious designer solutions in beautifully staged model apartments. Results: Outstanding media coverage for 21 ASID designers and brisk sales activity for newly motivated real estate brokers and prospective buyers.

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  • 1. PR inbriefASID Showcase at the AnsoniaMarketing PR/Events Partnership Gerry Casanova Rubenstein Associates – NY, NY Ready to re-launch as a luxury condo the Ansonia was a century-oldOur agency was retained by two unrelated architectural jewel in Manhattan thatorganizations: The NY Metro Chapter of had suffered years of neglect and athe American Society of Interior Designers reputation for eccentricity.(ASID) and The landmark Ansoniaapartment complex on Manhattan’s UpperWestside.Each needed to raise their profile andchange public misperceptions. Neither hadmuch in the way of news or budget. The American Society of InteriorEach had resources that could be used to Designers represents professional interior designers. ASID’s New Yorktell each other’s marketing story. Chapter struggled to get the public to see them not as decorators but asSo we partnered ASID-NY and the skilled problem solvers.Ansonia and produced an extraordinarilysuccessful marketing public relationsprogram.
  • 2. PR Goals Key MessagesBoth ASID and the Ansonia ASID and the Ansonia each had different target audiences, but it was possible to convey theirneeded public relations to: respective marketing messages in parallel.Create BuzzRaise Awareness Professional design is an affordable investmentInform & Engage Designers are ‘solvers’ ASID designers are industryDrive Business TARGET accredited Homeowners & RentersFix Misperceptions TARGET Prospective Buyers & Real Estate Agents Rare condo opportunity Luxury landmark Legendary floor plans and design details PR inbrief
  • 3. PR StrategyThe Big Idea: Produce a majorinterior design showcase at thenewly renovated Ansonia and forfour weeks use the venue for To generate foot traffic at the Ansonia we invited theconsumer and trade events. public and members of the real estate community to tour The Ansonia is one of Manhattan’s an interior design showcase produced by the New York grandest, yet most curious residential Chapter of ASID. buildings; formerly the home of Babe Ruth, Igor Stravinsky, Florenz Ziegfeld, Jack Dempsey – and more Most designer show houses are devoted to opulent recently, Angelina Jolie and Natalie decor. ASID’s Showcase was unique because its focus Portman. People interested in was design solutions for apartment-dwellers. Four fully architecture, real estate or interior renovated apartments – at total of 18 rooms - were on design jumped at the chance to visit view for one month. the Ansonia and tour ASID’s designer Showcase. To promote professional design services we simultaneously produced NY Interior Design Week - seven days of free seminars and design consultations at the Ansonia and hosted around town by our design industry sponsors. To understand what interior designers do it helps to see examples of their work. At the Ansonia a team of 20 ASID designers showcased ingenious and affordable interior solutions. PR inbrief
  • 4. Sponsorships Funding, products andPR Tactics services, events, and promotional support from design industry sponsorsThere were six tactical modules.Integrating them enabled us tobreak through in New York’scluttered media space. ASID Showcase at the Ansonia 4-week open house; Four apartments; 18 rooms by team of 20 ASID interior designers NY Interior Design Week/ Consumer Education ASID pros were onsite for seven days conducting ‘solutions’ seminars and design clinics Media Relations Multi-phase publicity: Tour listings; Press preview; Features/Exclusives; Onsite interviews; Photo/ story syndication; Books. Onsite Marketing Events Afterhours the Showcase was used for real estate agent events Charity Proceeds from tour sales were donated to Ronald McDonald House PR inbrief
  • 5. ASID Showcaseat the AnsoniaThis campaign would have Provided by the ANSONIA Four apartment units renovated to ASID plansbeen prohibitively expensive Budget for permanent materials and applianceshad it not been for the perfect Construction engineerdovetail in resources. ASID NYC building licenses and permitsand the Ansonia were indeed Property and liability insurance 24/7 onsite securityideal partners. Signage exterior/interior Water/electricity /building services Evening use for private tours and events Provided by ASID-NY Showcase Executive Producer Design Team- 25 ASID design professionals Design Team Manager Architectural and design plans Furnishings contributed, lent and purchased Decorative services – painting/carpentry Sponsors Room Installations/maintenance/removal NY Interior Design Week seminars/clinics Professional photography all rooms Publicity Ronald McDonald House Charities Meeting space Showcase staffing and promotion PR inbrief
  • 6. ASID Showcaseat the AnsoniaThough showcase apartmentswere created for fictitious Unit 12G / 1-bedroomresidents, our designers’ work Single Mother & Daughterwas based on detailed ‘client’profiles that read like typical NewYorkers. Design teams received lifestyle notes that included specific challenges and mandates. Unit 11D / Studio Wired Bachelor Pad Unit 12E / 2-bedrooms Growing Family/Twins Unit 11A / 1-bedroom Empty Nesters/ Seniors with Disability PR inbrief
  • 7. Unit 12EGrowing Family Solutions: One of the Ansonia’s famous round rooms was made into a beige and white parlor complete with rounded furnishings of kid-tough materials. Solution: Sliding shelves in the kitchen Dual-parent converted inner wall space to a hide- family with away pantry. Instead of floor and table lamps, sconces and track 7-year old lighting on dimmers were used. twins; two- bedroom A built-in entertainment unit made it easy to tuck away unit. monitors and equipment. Space-saving bookshelves were built into twin platform sofas.Design Challenges/MandatesSeamless, space-efficient storageareas throughoutSophisticated living room with familyroom amenities and durabilityFamily/Epicure’s kitchen Solutions: Posh details in the master suite providedLuxury/Privacy features in master the adults a 5-star refuge.bedroom /bath .Maximum open floor space. Recessed Solutions: Lots of space-ceiling and wall-mounted lighting. doubling tricks in the compact bedroom.Durability throughout PR inbrief
  • 8. Unit 12GSingle Mom Work-at-home Solutions: Built-in bed and cabinetry adds storage and mom and ‘tween floor space. Seating, desktop and lighting solutions daughter; one- double-duty for school and play. bedroom unit. Solution: Cabinet wall divides large living room into areas for sleep, work, dining and entertaining. Design Challenges/Mandates Mixed-use space. Living room is mom’s workspace and bedroom. Open galley kitchen. Extreme sunlight and heat from large southwest-facing windows. One bathroom must be easy to clean and uncluttered; must be suitable for business visitors. Convert bedroom into a self-contained Solutions: Fabric-covered walls, girl’s space for sleep, study and play. windows and floors reduce noise Invest in cabinetry and window treat- and sunlight glare. ments; Make it easy to change out decorative elements as child grows. PR inbrief
  • 9. Unit 11AEmpty Nesters Solutions: Higher seating and tables minimize bending and reaching. Retired couple coping with arthritis disability; one- bedroom unit.Design Challenges/MandatesDownsized from suburban home: Solutions: In the kitchen softmaintain mature tastes and comforts. easy-clean surfaces plus fixtures, tools and appliances that work at the touch of the wrist or palm.Partner with severe arthritis haslimited hand strength, dexterity andmobility.Requires easy-accessfurnishings, closets and storage. Solutions: Touch-operated solutions blended seamlessly with décor.Uncluttered, easy-clean surfaces and Solutions: Designers sought expert adviceappliances a must. from the Arthritis Foundation regarding the special needs of arthritis suffers. PR inbrief
  • 10. Unit 11D Solution: Compact bathroom based onBachelor’s Studio one designed for a yacht’s stateroom. Urbane technophile; dark, compact, Solution: A pair of folding screens viewless studio unit obscured a dressing area with built-in valet.Design Challenges/MandatesOne-room living with exposed kitchenDark interior; Large viewless windowsNeed for durable double-dutyfurnishingsUse touch-tech solutions throughout:lighting, media; appliances; decorativeamenities. Solution: Modular kitchen design is super space efficient. Solution: Double-duty design: Folding sofa is also a bed; Lampshade and digital fireplace are functional art. PR inbrief
  • 11. Campaign ResultsThis program met its goals andexceeded all expectations: Showcase Traffic 5500 visitors over a four week period. Media Coverage 23 editors and reporters attended the press preview at the ASID Showcase at the Ansonia. Multiple features about interior design solutions ran in the New York Times; NY Post; Daily News; Newsday; Observer. Various weeklies. TV coverage on WNBC; WCBS, WABC; NY-1; WPIX11; Associated Press; 1010 News; Radio; The Cooperator; Photos from the Showcase appeared in national design magazines House Beautiful and HG; A promotional flyer was inserted in the New York Times ‘Home” section. The Showcase was featured extensively in the design book Showhouses: Signature Designer Style (PBC Int’l). Design Events 400 people attended design seminar s and/or scheduled a professional design consultation. Real Estate Events 150 real estate agents attended any of six cocktail receptions/showcase tours hosted by the Ansonia. ASID-NY received 75 requests for designer referrals. Sales Prospects 30 visitors to the showcase also visited the Ansonia’s onsite sales office. Two showcase apartments were sold – one fully furnished. Charity Donation Ticket sales and donations raised $4000 for New York’s Ronald McDonald House. PR inbrief
  • 12. Social MediaIf this campaign was executed Goaltoday digital and social media Attract, activate and funnel qualified prospects to sales operations at ASID-NY andwould be hugely important. Our The Ansonia Condominiumapproach to using social mediamight look like this: Objectives Reach 90% of estimated 10,000 active residential real estate agents who sell luxury property in NYC. Engage 500 VIP brokers in tour of the Ansonia property and Showcase. Generate 5000 website visits and register 250 followers on Facebook and. Twitter. Achieve 85% ‘would recommend’ in post-event broker poll. Reach 60% of web users in the metropolitan NYC area who create and/or follow home design content. Generate event publicity and links on 250 most read home and style websites and blogs. Register 1500 fans on Facebook and 2500 on Twitter. Achieve 5000 click-though to ASID-NY’s consumer information and referrals page. Confirm 7000 paid visits to the ASID Showcase during four week open house. Confirm 800 attendees at onsite design seminars during NY Interior Design Week. Capture 10,000 opt-in contacts.
  • 13. Social MediaA variety of web platforms, tools andpractices would be used to inform,  Monitor social conversations to understand how our target groups are using social media and toengage and motivate our target identify their interests, influencers and best points of contact on the social webaudiences to action.  Create compelling, relevant multimedia content tailored to make the best use of each social media platform  Optimize web pages for search engines; Optimize geo-targeted advertising and email campaigns  Integrate social sites to give users a richer multimedia experience  Use actionable content and short, deliberate click paths  Establish reciprocal links for publicity and SEO  Monitor social media for insight and use analytics to manage and measure success
  • 14. Social MediaA variety of web platforms, tools andpractices would be used to manage Search Engine Optimization Update and optimize profile listings on search engines, wikis, online directories and maps. Edit text, photos,event planning, logistics and all PR maps and links to PR and partner links into Ansonia and ASID-NY profiles on Google Local Business Center,communications. Bing Maps, etc. Create a Google Profile page as a central landing page with links to the campaign’s social sites. Optimize all web sites and pages with keywords and inbound links. Optimize for local search engines as well. Marketing & Event Management Use collaborative wiki such as Zoho Projects Program to centralize team-driven planning and management. Outsource Showcase and event ticket marketing to Eventbrite. Get events indexed by event search engines and regional listings sites. Use ChimpMail for geo-targeted email campaigns and for capturing opt- ins for mailing lists. Solicit 250 volunteers using links and searchable social platforms such as Meet Up, Facebook, Twitter, VolunteerMatch and Craig’s List. Edit a video using MS Moviemaker and post it on YouTube. Support sponsor solicitation efforts with a multimedia presentation posted to the web and linked to industry publicity and ads, and posted to professional social networks such as LinkedIn.
  • 15. Social Media Content Production & Management Our blog; sponsor presentations; electronic press kit, promotional landing pages; a NY Interior Design Week ezine published using BuddyPress/WordPress. A variety of plug-ins would provide interactive blog content: GoDaddy for polls; Discus for the forum, and more. Media Archives: Flickr for photos; YouTube for videos; BlogTalkRadio for podcasts. All materials would be tagged for search engines and contain link-backs to our social networks. Team Tweet would manage Twitter centrally from a Hootsuite account. Select tweets and blog posts would be shared across our other social platforms using ping.fm Edited videos would be distributed to via Tubemogul to sites such as YouTube; Daily Motion; Metacafe, etc.. Branded demos and video comments powered by Viddler. Mobile video would be uploaded using Posterous and Ustream would be used for livestreams. Audio podcasts would be created using BlogTalkRadio.
  • 16. Social Media Press Relations Our electronic press kit/EPK would keep bloggers top of mind with downloadable text, photo, video, graphic, audio material, RSS, and pertinent links. This site would be optimized for search engines and updated regularly. Social press releases would be posted and distributed electronically via PR Web, Pitch Engine Influential bloggers would be invited to exchange links and guest posts within our social network. Also, articles and multimedia would be created and syndicated to blogs and social networks. Our PR team would track key media: blogs, websites, offline print and broadcast media and participate in discussions, mentioning our events. E-Commerce An e-store with designer-recommended books and products would be run via Amazon.com; Specially branded merchandise such as Ansonia coffee mugs and ASID totes would be produced and sold via Zazzle.com. Profits would be donated to the Ronald McDonald House of New York .
  • 17. Social Media Communication RSS, micro-blogs, forums, posts, and email would push news and drive conversation. Twitter hashtag would aggregate tweets and tweetmeme to prompt retweets; Hootsuite/iPhone and Backtype to manage Twitter activity A Facebook Business Fan page and LinkedIn would serve as social networks for community-building and promotion. Groups would be engaged and/ or otherwise created. Event details would be posted to local listings and events search engines such as Eventful and Upcoming. Eventbright.com would place event listings to promote advance ticket sales. The Ansonia would use real estate blogs, websites and search engines such as Google Real Estate Listings and Pycasa to engage agents and buyers. ASID would do the same across professional, trade and consumer networks. Ronald McDonald House, too. Sponsors would run web ad campaigns using GoogleAdwords and Facebook Ads, and crosslink with our social networks and optimize their web and publicity materials. Viral publicity would be facilitated bookmarking/sharing tools such as ShareThis, Delicious, Stumbleupon, Mixx and Digg. Stories, photos and videos would be pushed to bookmarking sites. Marketing PR would be directed to resources such as e-how; About; Answers.com; AllAnswers.com; WikiAnswers; AllAnswers.com. Post campaign presentations might be posted on Slideshare and Scribd. Our PR team would monitor and participate in multimedia social discussions
  • 18. Social Media Collaboration Several contests would be run using a multimedia wiki platform such as Wetpaint. Existing social network groups on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and others would be engaged and new event-specific groups would be created. All would link back to our central landing page. Mobile Location-based interactive social networks such as Foursquare, Google Places/Maps; Bing Maps; Gowalla and Brightkite would be utilized to generate buzz about the Ansonia and the ASID Showcase and special offers from the event’s local retail, dining and entertainment partners. Mobile enabled users of Facebook and Twitter would be incentivized to share comments with friends and review sites such as Yelp and Trip Advisor.
  • 19. Social MediaOur use of and participation in socialmedia would be guided monitoring Monitoringtools that track online content and Viral Heat for benchmarks; mentions and sentiments; real-time trends; community insight; web trafficconversations, and provide analytics analyticsabout user traffic and behavior on oursocial sites. Technorati/backtype for monitoring online mentions; Rank blogs and bloggers by influence; FriendFeed for dashboard aggregation of social media mentions Hootsuite/ Twitterfall for tracking real-time tweets; Compiles follow lists, Twitter analytics. YT Insights for insights on YouTube viewer traffic Google Analytics for managing SEO; web site traffic; marketing and user data Google Adwords for SEM analytics used to manage display ad and email campaigns Google Alerts/Alltop for tracking racks online news mentions Google Business Center for data insights about local search engine traffic
  • 20. Social MediaA variety of tools would be used to Metricsmeasure social media activity andimpact. Web Mentions Quantity; Quality; Sentiment; % Sharing Followers/Groups Community Size; Growth; % Active Participation; % Retention; Accept promotional offers; Use links to program’s other social platforms. Traffic/User Data User analytics for individual program websites and blogs; Volume; Growth; Participation; Click to action. SEO Page Rank; Clicks; Links; SEM Ad Clicks/Ticket Marketing; E-store sales Email Results data: open rate; conversion rate, etc. Social Engagement Attendance; industry buzz; agent/buyer prospects ASID-NY designer queries and referrals; Media Coverage; Influence; Inbound links; Bookmarks