Shea McGee: Strategic Growth as an Interior Designer

Episode 10 July 14, 2022 00:41:16
Shea McGee: Strategic Growth as an Interior Designer
The Interior Collective
Shea McGee: Strategic Growth as an Interior Designer

Jul 14 2022 | 00:41:16


Show Notes

This highly anticipated episode of The Interior Collective digs deep into Shea McGee's blueprints for strategic growth, practices for productivity, and insights on incorporating video within your marketing strategy. We welcome Shea McGee Founder and Creative Director of Studio McGee, McGee & Co., author, and Netflix's Emmy Nominated Dream Home Makeover.
Over the last eight years, we’ve watched Shea McGee grow her interior design business into a powerhouse lifestyle brand centered around approachability and beautiful living alongside her husband, Syd. Today’s episode of The Interior Collective digs deep into Shea’s strategic growth, her practices for productivity and insights to incorporating video into your marketing strategy as an interior designer. I’ve had the pleasure of knowing Shea for years now as we’ve interviewed her on the blog, and today, I’m so excited to bring that conversation to the podcast.
In this episode, Shea and I discuss:
  • Dynamics of working with your partner
  • The transitions from design studio into a full lifestyle brand
  • How Shea and Syd learned to delegate to an ever-growing team
  • A day in the life of filming Dream Home Makeover
  • Why designers should incorporate video content into their marketing strategy
Show Notes
Mentioned in the episode:
Thanks for listening to this episode of The Interior Collective Season 1, Episode 10: Strategic Growth as an Interior Designer featuring Shea McGee. You can listen to our episode on Spotify, Apple Podcasts, or access the full episode transcription below. You can follow Studio McGee on Instagram or visit the website for endless inspiration.
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Episode Transcript

Speaker 0 00:00:02 Hi, this is the interior collective a podcast for the business of beautiful living presented by IDCO studio. And I'm Anastasia Casey as one of the first design influencers on Instagram. She's fresh approach, quickly attracted a long client roster and loyal following in 2014, Shane, her husband said decided to launch their interior design firm with one directive in mind, make life beautiful. As the firm's designs at fan base grew, it paved the way for the launch of their eCommerce brand McGee co two years later today, the McGee's continued design homes across the country, as they bring their vision to fruition through their multiyear partnership with target for threshold and their new Emmy nominated Netflix series, dream home makeover. Over the last eight years, we've watched Shae McGee grow her interior design business into a powerhouse lifestyle brand centered around approachability and beautiful living alongside her husband. Sid today's episode of the interior collective digs deep into Shay's strategic growth, her practices for productivity and insights to incorporating video into your marketing strategy. As an interior designer, I've had the pleasure of knowing Shae for years now, as we've interviewed here a few times on the blog over the years, and today I'm so excited to bring that conversation to the interior, collective a podcast for the business of beautiful living. Hello, she welcome to the interior collective. We are so happy to have you. Speaker 1 00:01:28 Thank you for having me. I'm so proud of you for doing a podcast. It's incredible. Speaker 0 00:01:35 <laugh> gosh, that's so sweet of you. It definitely has been a labor of love, but after getting the first few episodes out and just seeing how many people really enjoy it and it affects them, it totally makes this very painful, personal obstacle, so much more worth it. And having you here today is like a pinch me moment for sure. Speaker 1 00:01:55 Thank you. The design industry needs your podcast, so I'm excited to be a listener and, and to be on it. So thank you for having me. Speaker 0 00:02:05 I want to kick things off with a couple of congratulations first and foremost. Congratulations on new baby who I guess isn't so fresh anymore, but just as I started thinking about what I wanted to chat with you today, baby just kept coming up in my mind because it's like very personal to me in our life planning journey. And I am just like, how does she do it? So <laugh> congratulations to that. Also. Congratulations on wrapping season three of dream home makeover, and also congratulations on the Emmy nomination. Correct. That was huge. I was just watching your stories and I was like, wait girl, are you at the Emmy's right now? <laugh> Speaker 1 00:02:51 Yes. Yes. Well funny you mentioned baby and Emmy's last year, the day of the Emmy's I was having a baby and so, and we were nominated and it was all virtual. And so this year I was so excited to get dressed up and go and see what all this Hollywood stuff is about. <laugh> Speaker 0 00:03:11 So Speaker 1 00:03:12 We are, you know, we're out of it a little bit. Um, a lot of it actually here in Utah, so it was kind of fun to, um, to experience everything Speaker 0 00:03:22 That is so exciting. So to dig right in, I know you were super busy jetting off on a much needed vacation. Um, I want today to really focus on strategic growth because I think everyone watching you over the last eight years has just seen exponential growth and you guys did it so organically. You did it just like your gut reactions, but I know that there was strategy involved. And I know that you really had to think about going into it with Sid and what that looked like. So in your own words to you, what do you think you have built Speaker 1 00:03:57 <laugh>? Well, I think that we've, we've built a movement. Um, I think that a movement towards really blending content and commerce and community, and I, I feel like when I sit down and think about, um, did we plan it this way? We did not plan the journey in these steps, but from the very beginning, we knew that we wanted to create something that blended, um, product and design, and then all the things that kind of have happened in between have, uh, been more organic in, in how they've fallen into place. Yes, we've worked really hard, but we didn't say we were gonna do a TV show on Netflix like that wasn't we didn't put that out into the universe. Um, but I think that by blending that and incorporating our journey and sharing that along the way that that has evolved into more than just design it's evolved into lifestyle and content production. And, uh, so teaching truly, um, through, through our content. Speaker 0 00:05:11 Well, I'm so excited. We're gonna dive really deep into video production and content a little later in the episode, but the last eight years have been quite a whirlwind. Congratulations on celebrating your eight year anniversary just a couple of days ago last week, I think, and looking back on studio McGee and McGee co what was the moment you decided to go from interior designer to like full lifestyle brand? Speaker 1 00:05:41 So I think that the lifestyle aspect of it was a more organic, um, it was more demand driven. I think that from the beginning I want, we really wanted to build, we started out planning to do eCommerce almost more than design and really when we started eCommerce wasn't, um, it wasn't as something that our industry understood a lot. And so it was really hard to get that off the ground. And so we started by just making our own pillows. That's what we did. And then we leaned hard into design because it's what I was all about. So we focused on the design firm and then we said, okay, over time we can go into, um, this product based business. Um, but as I shared so much of our life and behind the scenes, it became a part of telling the story about what studio movie is all about, what is our, um, and then that was, what am I wearing? Speaker 1 00:06:44 What are we cooking for dinner? What, you know, all of those things, how, where are you going on vacation and getting those questions? I mean, I, when I say I listen to our audience, I mean, I, listen. I think that, um, when we get those questions, the more questions we get about something, it tells us, Hey, maybe we need to give that to our audience. And, um, I think that I was hesitant at first because it was a question of like, does this distract from the design? But we actually, our, you know, the name of our book is make life beautiful. That is our, um, that is our mantra through everything that we do in music business. And there's a reason that it's make life beautiful and not make home beautiful. And that's because we felt that it bridged the way we view home and the way we view every day and finding beauty in small moments translates into so many more categories than, um, than only home. And so it didn't start that way where like, I'm gonna post a recipe. It was, it did not, it did not start that way. But I think that by showing tidbits, it's testing is so important in building a business. And so I would say if you're interested in, um, finding out if your audience wants more fashion or home, um, content that's like organizing based or, um, just everyday based start putting it out there and see how people respond and then don't be afraid to get a no we're not interested. Speaker 0 00:08:15 <laugh> I think you just touched on something that a lot of interior designers kind of struggle with when you, you knew you wanted to go e-com from the beginning, but you were really involved in the design process. I know a lot of us are like, how do you share and provide what your audience is asking for? I E where you bought that chair, what color palette that is when, when a client has purchased potentially a proprietary design from you. And I know that with McKee and co, obviously a lot of your product is available and shoppable within the shop, but there's definitely still that fine line between things that were either made or you sourced specifically for a project. And how do you navigate like that comfort level of what we're allowed to share and what is proprietary to the people who paid Speaker 1 00:09:04 For it. Right. I think that's a good question. I think that we were easily one of the first, if not the first to really start sharing information. And because that's been part of our brand, our clients know going into it, that we will share some, but if you really take a deep dive into what we're sharing, we're not sharing everything. <laugh>, we're not sharing every single detail. We're not sharing, um, every facet of what we do. And I think that we pick and choose. And, um, whether that's a paint color, I think paint colors are interesting because they're easily shareable. And also they look different in every home. And so I'm like, that's an easy thing to share because it's not going to look the same. <laugh> there no matter what you do, it's not really going to look the same. And so that, that feels very straightforward to me. Speaker 1 00:09:58 Um, I think being upfront with your clients that, you know, we won't share every single detail in, in the home, but part of, part of our marketing strategy is, um, is sharing some things. We will, we will share a few, a few sources, but we will not share everything. And I think that probably in the beginning, it's harder because the projects are a little bit smaller, less custom, at least for me, they were. And so it was, we probably shared less that way. And, um, well, it was easier to share more. That's what I should say. It was easier to share more. So we had to be more careful, whereas now, as we've grown and we take on more customized projects, it's really hard for that to be replicated because a lot of what we do is custom. Speaker 0 00:10:45 Right. Um, can I ask, is that like in your contract anywhere that you would be sharing sources or is it just a conversation? Speaker 1 00:10:53 It's a conversation. Speaker 0 00:10:55 Okay, great. So I'm super fascinated and just in love with you and Sid, but working with your partner is both immensely enticing as a creative business owner, especially as businesses starting to ramp up, but it's also wildly frightening. You and Sid have been so public about your work dynamic, both through your book, make life beautiful. And on your Netflix show, dream home makeover. Can you walk us through what the key considerations were for you two when deciding to go into this together? Speaker 1 00:11:24 Well, I think that the key consideration was Sid <laugh> because I wanted to go into business together. I saw from very early on that we are, we have very different skill sets, and I knew that all of the things that I was, um, weak at, he was strong and the vice versa. So I, I knew that, and he was just very, very against it. Um, he did not want to mix family and business, and I think that as my business started to grow and he saw all of the things that I was totally overwhelmed by. Those were the things that came more naturally to him. And we started by just a few things, and I still wouldn't call that like us going into business together, but we did try a few, you know, Hey, can you manage this for me? And it was tricky. I think that, um, I am so grateful that I have my partner by me in business and in life, because running a business is really lonely at times you have to make really hard, tough calls. Speaker 1 00:12:40 And sometimes that can be both overwhelming and feel a little lonely as you're making, making those calls. And I love to have someone that supports and has the same vision and, and goals in mind. Um, but it also means that for the first many years of our business, that we, I think that we put our relationship, um, on the back burner more than I would have liked to. And we had to have a kind of a moment where we realized all we're talking about is work. And we have these young kids and we, we come last and how do we change that perspective? And we have worked really hard to turn that around. And now we're in a, a place where I can confidently say that we have to just like make time for dating each other and going on trips together. Uh, but it's really hard. Speaker 1 00:13:37 And I think that my advice to someone that's, um, considering it is when you are experiencing something where you don't see eye to eye with your spouse, are you able to work it out easily? Are you the type of couple that can work it out calmly? And if you can't, it's probably not a good idea. <laugh> because there's always problems in business. There's always, there's always things. And sudden I see eye to eye. We've always seen eye to eye on how things should be handled, but the hardest part about running a business together is that you experience stresses at the same time. It's not that one spouse goes to their job and then comes home for support. And then, you know, the role changes when someone else is feeling, um, you know, that, that stress, we feel it at the same time. And so that's, that's really hard. Speaker 0 00:14:29 Yeah, I can imagine that would be tough. I have played around with Quinn coming into business with me and I just don't think it's in us. We have a different way of thinking. And I so admire watching how you guys make it work through the ups and downs as your business began to grow. What were the first parts of the job you began to delegate and what did you decide to delegate within those responsibilities? Speaker 1 00:14:56 So I think at first, the whole mindset around delegating was let she be creative and focus on what she does best. And what can I offload and said, would say, what can I offload from you so that you spend more time doing the creative aspects? And so that's where we went down, you know, the list of responsibilities and I was doing everything by myself. And so it was sending proposals. It was doing, um, the ordering. It was, uh, putting together spreadsheet, all the things that go along with running a design business. Um, he said, you need to focus on the creative aspect and communicating with the clients for the like day to day. So that's where I started. And then as that grew, it was, you know, we are, we have too many clients for me to do all of the daily communication for them. And so our young designers that I was training started taking over that, um, role. And so now I'm copied on most, but not all, um, emails, and I'm not the one responding to the daily back and forth, um, from contractors and clients. Uh, but I review, I still haven't. I will never let go of reviewing the designs. Um, I can't, that's not for me. I, some designers can do that, but it's just not for me. Speaker 0 00:16:27 One thing I talk about with our clients a lot is that you need to take a step back and remember, what is someone paying you for? And once you decide what that is, you realize that's what you should be doing. And all the things that happen behind the scenes to make that happen. Those are the things that can be delegated. And I love that you've always held onto the creative aspect because you are the brand in that sense, and everybody wants to be hiring you. So to be delegating the tasks that prevent you from doing what you're actually being paid for, I think is such a critical step. If you were to delegate things differently. And I, and this is beyond just when you and Sid actually like started together. And it was when you started bringing on team members, is there anything you would've delegated at a different pace or order than what you actually did? Speaker 1 00:17:17 I think that if anything, we held on to things too long, um, we didn't take the approach of delegating too fast. We probably delegated too slow. And so we, we pushed ourselves for financial reasons because we would wait until everyone was, you know, kind of to maxed out, okay, now we have to hire somebody. It wasn't, it wasn't just like, okay, let's build a team because we couldn't afford to do that for every single thing. So that I would say, if anything, we just built, we delegated slow because we couldn't afford to do it any other way. But I do feel like that was also a good way for us to see like what the real needs were. We, we could see very clearly. Um, but I would say that that's the mistake we made early on was, um, we were just grinding and everyone was working really, really hard and that delegation probably could have happened sooner. Speaker 0 00:18:19 When you're thinking about that process of growing. Was there ever a moment that you felt yourself losing your creative role or the creativity in your business? And if so, are you willing to share that experience? Speaker 1 00:18:33 Sure. Um, I think that the times when I'm completely completely overwhelmed and at max capacity is the time that I'm like the least creative. And so, um, I have two, two examples. So one, um, we were taking on clients and we were taking on so many projects and we were new at the pacing and we were new at making promises. And so when people started, it was always guaranteed that like, I would be at the install or I would be at a site visit personally, if they were out of state and you know, how projects go, they take, you think they're going to take two years and they take three or so, what we thought was going to be a nice cadence, ended up having like all of our projects kind of land at the same time. And instead of seeing the anticipating that we just said, Shay's gonna be at everything. Speaker 1 00:19:34 And so I was just flying multiple times a week and just totally exhausted. And I wasn't creating at all. I was just showing up and, um, being there and directing, but I wasn't, um, being a visionary, which is really my role for our business. So that was probably the first time that happened. And I'd say that the second was, um, when we started, uh, filming, filming is absolutely exhausting and it ha takes over everything. So when we first started, we had no idea what we were getting into. Absolutely no idea. So they were casting clients. We were bringing, using some of our existing clients. They were casting people to be on the show. We were taking on all of these new projects. And I was, again, it's like the same things, overwhelmed, overworked, tired. And I was just trying to check off the things that I needed to do. And that's the exact opposite thing that inspires me. And I think space and time gives me the place to be, uh, really creative. And those are two experiences where different, but kind of the same things were happening. And I, I feel like I lost my creative edge. Speaker 0 00:20:53 I just can't imagine being in so many places at one time, while still being such a present presence in your girls' lives. And <laugh>, I can imagine it's an immense struggle. So let's fast forward to today. You're a mama to three, including a one year old. And no matter how much I try, I just cannot fathom how you manage to do so much. Do you have any practices or habits that you've put into place to help you with your productivity? Speaker 1 00:21:27 Well, I think that my first is waking up and not working. So I wake up and I work out and for me that just gets my head on straight. I can't have my phone with me. I can't have anything. That's like a screen near me. Well, I guess I could, if I wanted to watch a show or something on a treadmill, but I really, I just step away, move my body, get going for the day and not think about work. And then I come home I'm energized and that really, really helps me. I also, I am, I schedule everything. My schedule is probably down to the five minutes. Um, it's really like that throughout my entire, um, day. But by doing that, I keep on track for just getting the things done. And then like not finding myself like going to, into a hole of, um, like overwhelm, because I just like can, can keep on track of the things that need to get, need to get done Speaker 0 00:22:30 Here at IICA. We have seven years experience working directly alongside award-winning interior designers from around the world. Our mission to provide creative business solutions for interior designers in beautiful ways is what we absolutely obsess over from pre-written client email templates with dozens of five star reviews to fully copy written client process documents used by hundreds of designers worldwide. We have a track record for making things easy as a listener of the interior collective. We are proud to give you an exclusive discount code to our two bestselling products, client, email templates, and client process bundles use code podcast 20 to save 20% off [email protected] of LinkedIn in today's show notes for easy reference again, that's podcast [email protected]. So when you were saying that you schedule everything down to like five minutes, is that including like your personal time? Not that there's a whole lot of that, but like your time with Sid your time with the girls, like, do you literally put everything into the schedule? So it's very clear what you need to be focused on or is it like work stuff is scheduled down to the minute and you try to keep personal a little more fluid, Speaker 1 00:23:42 A little bit of both. I think my kids are getting to that age where they have a lot of activities and so that's scheduled out, but once my day, my Workday of meetings and all the things end, it's like family time. Like we just, I break and we are done and there was a time when it wasn't that way. And I think that it was really unhealthy for sit and I, it was like checking emails and, oh, I need a post to Instagram. And it was like seven, 8:00 PM. And we're trying to put the kids to bed and they needed our attention. And we quickly, very quickly learned, like, you just have to like put that away and focus all in on family when that time comes. And, um, so that helps me be hyper productive during my day. I am not the person that's spending time perusing and shopping or doing whatever in the middle of my work day, because I gotta a finite amount of time and I gotta squeeze it all in because then I gotta, you know, go focus on focus on the kids. Speaker 0 00:24:45 What would you say is your most naturally creative and productive time of day? Like if you didn't have a set schedule, when would you like to be creating? Speaker 1 00:24:53 I am a night creative. I like to like check things off of my to-do list during the day, have my meetings and then late in the evening, I don't know what it is. I know it's not good, but I just can, all of my ideas come late at night, so my team knows like, don't worry, like, don't, you don't need to answer those emails, but she's gonna, she's gonna send you an email at 11, 12 when she thinks of something. Speaker 0 00:25:18 Yeah. I completely understand that. I just say my days for my to-do list and my nighttime is for like my strategic planning and creativity. Yes, exactly. I completely get that. So how many employees do you guys have Speaker 1 00:25:30 Now? 200. Wow. Speaker 0 00:25:32 How have your duties changed over time? And one of the girls on our team, shout out to Lee who actually came up with this question, what has been gained and what has been lost in that transition? Speaker 1 00:25:44 Yes, I think that's a, a great question. So as the company has grown and we have so many wonderful team members, I think that I don't have to do all of the heavy lifting for every aspect of everything. Right. So, um, but my responsibility is to direct the design in all visual aspects of our business. And so I have time to focus on product and design work with clients. And also, um, we work with, you know, partners that we do, um, collaborations with whether that's target or otherwise. Um, my, my role is to direct those and I do not let those aspects of that creative direction go. Um, but there is lead up to where that gets presented to those clients. And then there's like all of, all of the implementation. And so if we're developing a product and I have an idea for it, we have someone that is amazing at bringing that vision to life. Speaker 1 00:27:01 And, um, then also not just bringing it to life, but also like getting it on a container and getting, getting it here. And then also the person that's helping us coordinate fulfillment. So there's all of those things that have, um, you know, Sid and I have touched at some point we had to figure out how to, you know, produce things or figure out how to do all of the design work, but that has, um, changed. We I've let that go. I think that the thing that I've, um, lost is a touch point on every single aspect of our business. I mean, I think it's grown to be such that I have to have so much trust in our leadership and the larger we've grown, the more, um, experienced professionals we've been able to bring on and they know so much more than I do. And so it's awesome because I can say you are, this is your specialty. And I know, and I trust that you are going to run with it and that you're going to lead your team. And then you're gonna report back to me and that's um, that's, I don't know if I'd consider it lost, but it's changed Speaker 0 00:28:05 A shift. Yeah, for sure. So you already talked us through really the majority of your day to day. Thank you for sharing what that schedule looks like. I'm interested from more of a, like actually business perspective. I'm a big time blocker. Like I batch schedule everything. How do, when you have so many different teams in so many different departments, do you have a schedule where it's like, I know Tuesdays and let's just assume that you're not filming the show. Let's just assume this is like more so normal life. Do you have set days that you review with certain teams? Is it batch schedule? So all your meetings are on a certain day with all teams. How do you really like make it run <laugh>? Speaker 1 00:28:46 Yeah, so I have a few like rolling meetings that are always on that same day and time. Um, we have with, with product, we have production check-ins or we'll have like a marketing team check-in that it's a very, you know, regular, regular occurrence. Um, that said design, the design aspect, design services is more fluid because certain clients need more at certain times than others. And so my, my assistant essentially has everyone go through her and they email and say, I need, I need an hour with shade for what we call creative review time. So that creative designer view time, they request the amount of time and she put, and they say it needs to happen by this date. And so then she gets it on the calendar. Um, and that's, so that's more fluid depending on what designers need, what things on our team. Speaker 0 00:29:46 Let's chat more about the show. I know you got into that a little bit, but it's very fresh cuz you just wrapped up season three. Um, how has it affected the business? Speaker 1 00:29:57 So it has been incredible for our business in that it's opened up a lot of opportunities, uh, outside of the TV show. I think that honestly, just having that Netflix name associated with our name and um, all that comes with that, um, does lot design. I don't even like to say that, but design celebrity in a sense, I think that it's opened up, um, conversations at least, uh, to, to talk about other other partnerships and, and things like that. So it's been incredible. It's interesting because Netflix has such a huge international audience that, um, that's opened up a wide range. We, I, I always say you have the design lovers who started following us from the beginning and then the larger we grow, the more you have people who are just getting into discovering that they like design. And then you have also the people who came to us for entertainment, they happen to like home shows. And so the, it kind of just cha it changes. Um, but, uh, the show has opened up a lot of, a lot of opportunities, but I it's crazy because the content that we create, um, has been instrumental as well. Speaker 0 00:31:18 So Shay, how has it affected your personal life? Speaker 1 00:31:23 It's filming a shows really hard. Not because the work is hard, but because everything else becomes really difficult. Um, home shows do not get filmed in three months. Like other reality shows it takes us a full year. And if you were to take your full-time job and squeeze it into one to two days a week, because you needed to take another full-time job on <laugh> then if you imagine what that, what that becomes. And also we, they want our family on. And so we're bringing the kids along and we're filming with the kids and we're spending Saturdays and we're spending evenings and we're spending a lot of spare time and it's very, it, it takes a lot of energy to be like on for the camera. And um, so it's, it's hard. And then you see that result and you're like, oh my gosh, wow, it's so cool that we made this and people are so excited about it and they're learning how to take inspiration and imply that to their homes. And that's so cool, but I will not lie. It is very, very hard. Yeah. Um, thing to take on, Speaker 0 00:32:32 Well, we are grateful for you and your family for taking it on because it's been a joy to follow along. So I it's no surprise that for a lot of interior designers, TV can feel like the ultimate goal. I mean, I, I, I certainly don't think all designers feel that way, but it's a topic that comes up a lot. Are there any trues you like to share that could either confirm or contest that a show is the ultimate goal as a creative designer? Speaker 1 00:32:59 Yeah. I think that it really depends on what your goal is as a designer, because for most people it is not going to score you big projects for this show. You're, you're going to be taking on, um, more accessible projects and there is that's wonderful. It's great. It, it makes it so that all of these, um, design lovers that are finding out about design can see how it works and get, you know, a peak behind the curtain and feel inspired. But I think that if your goal is to be a personality, a TV personality, and make that a career, then, you know, push hard, push hard into that area. But if your goal is to build, um, a really high end design firm, you would have to do a lot of juggling. We've had to do a lot of juggling because we juggle all of our high end custom projects. And then we add on more for the show. And so we only showcase, you know, one to two of our big projects because we're adding in all of those other things. And, um, I think that there is absolutely no question that, um, having a show gives you a certain credibility, um, for partnerships and collaborations and, um, other things that you're after and opens up so many doors. Speaker 0 00:34:30 So speaking of TV, video content is obviously at the forefront of marketing efforts these days, but y'all have been doing it from the very beginning way before the Netflix show, how vital is video content and content production to your design studio. And we can say the shop too, um, the E eCom shop now, how do you continue to produce your own video content when like you're so swamped doing <laugh> a show in itself? Speaker 1 00:35:00 Yeah, so we saw video coming very early on and wanted to take advantage of the opportunity that no one was doing it in the design industry. We saw this as a, a place where we could make a mark. We were young and we were new and we were like, well, we gotta do something different and we have an iPhone <laugh> so we can, we can do some video. You know, it was, it was very, um, we were just, uh, doing whatever we could, we to make it work. And, um, so we, we just, we started making content and, um, over time we've seen that video has now it rains the frame. I think, I think that people are more excited about video content than they are, um, photos in, in many ways, photos are still relevant and they still have very much have a place. But I think that, um, video is really engaging because it just adds a different dimension. It also gives people an opportunity to see your personality. Um, and, um, I think as a designer, client potential clients want, um, to, to see that, Speaker 0 00:36:11 Yeah, they wanna know you. What advice do you have for designers looking to begin incorporating video content into their marketing strategy Speaker 1 00:36:19 To just do it? I mean, if you can't afford a videographer to just start by doing, doing your best, to produce like prettier stories, can you do that in, um, you know, an app or can you do that through reels or TikTok in ways that just help give a mood? Um, I think that we, uh, hear the word aesthetic and vibe a lot and ultimately I think that that can help you do it. And so if you just don't wait, I always say that just don't wait. Like you cannot wait until it's the perfect time where you're like, I feel camera ready or I feel like I can afford to hire someone it's like, you might just have to start doing it. And then one step at a time you'll get a little bit more professional and a little bit more professional. The first video we made, we didn't have mics. And, um, we just use like the mic that goes on the camera and it was like really bad. And we got like a lot of bad. We got a lot of people so excited that we were doing video. And then we got a lot of people saying you need to get mics and you know what I'm like, eventually we did get a mic, but oh, didn't start that way. And that's okay. We just had to start. Speaker 0 00:37:30 Yeah. As we wrap up, what do you want to tell those interior designers who are listening in comparing themselves to your journey? Speaker 1 00:37:40 <laugh> well, I can say that my journey has been like no one else's and their journey should be like, no one else's either. I think that, uh, I feel like people say we had really quick success a lot, but if you actually look back eight years of studio McGee, didn't start there. There were, there was years of lead up deciding to become a designer dabbling in design school and taking on those early projects and figuring it all out. Um, I think that you just have to get started. And I think that, um, if you really work on finding out who you are as a designer, you truly are, and not patterning yourself after someone else, you will find success because you won't just fade away into the crowd. You'll you'll stand out. And the moment a designer really kind of knows who they are. You can sense that you can sense it. Speaker 0 00:38:45 So I like to leave every episode with a little something special. Can you share any secrets with us of what's to come for studio McGee? And you are a tricky one to ask this question too, cuz you have a lot of contracts. So Speaker 1 00:38:58 I have a lot of contracts. So I, I <laugh>, I do have a lot of contracts. How do I not break an NDA, but also share something really fun? Um, so we're working on a really, really cool, um, partnership right now that will launch next year. And it's involving something that can be put in both your bathroom and kitchen. Um, and it's a really, really incredible international brand that we will be working with. So very excited. Speaker 0 00:39:33 That is amazing. I can't believe I got such a good tidbit out of you. <laugh> thank you for sharing Shay. This was incredible. I cannot tell you what it means to me that you could take an hour out to chat with me. I'm so excited to see you in person. Finally, this September at design camp, which is now sold out. But this episode I am announcing, we are releasing two scholarship tickets. So in the show notes, you can go ahead and apply for a fully paid scholarship, including your room and board while at design camp. And that is all thanks to Shay. So we will see you in September and Shay, thank you again for your time. I will talk to you very soon. Speaker 1 00:40:12 Thank you. Speaker 0 00:40:13 If you weren't able to write down everything you heard today, you can find all of the links and images we referenced. In other details of this episode of the interior collective on our website at If you loved this podcast, please leave us review on apple podcasts. Podcasting is new to us and we really hope it's something you'd like us to continue. If you have questions or topics you'd like to hear next season, email [email protected]. Again, that is podcast If you're new to the interior collective catch up on the rest of season one with episodes from Jake Arnold, Kelly Lamb, Gil Davis, Clara junk Marie Flanigan, and a bonus episode. I walk you through improving your client process. We've got so many more amazing guests this season like Blair Moore, Amber Lewis, Lauren Lee, Beth, Diana Smith, and Lindsay butcher until then I'm your host anesthesia, Casey. And this is the interior collective a podcast for the business of beautiful living.

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