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UK Designer Natasha Burton on the Value of an Online Portfolio, Business Expansion and the Power of Automated Marketing

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Edgy, sophisticated, classic. These are words often used to describe British design, with its profound architectural history and global influence. From Georgian townhouses to rustic Victorian cottages, British designers are frequently tasked with building on the nation’s rich cultural foundations in ways that seamlessly blend with contemporary ideas. Natasha Burton of NB Interiors UK is a designer whose work merges the old world with the new. She specialises in curating meaningful and personalised interiors in her projects around the Suffolk, Essex and London areas.

“A home should tell a story and reflect your personality, [and] this is what I aim to do with all of my designs,” Burton says in her Houzz business description. She joined Houzz a couple of years ago, after her first overseas client made her realise she needed to be able to interact with clients no matter where they were in the world. Since then, she’s gained many clients through Houzz, attributing about 80% of her projects to clients who found her through the Project Match system or by directly messaging on Houzz Pro. “I’ve noticed more and more contacts being made due to the amount of reviews I have, and even my responses to reviews,” she says.

Burton now finds herself at an exciting crossroads in her business. Until recently she had been doing everything herself — “from the design to the marketing to the admin.” But with demand for her services growing, she’s at that pivotal point where she needs to hire staff members in order to effectively expand her business. “I’ve recently taken on some freelancers who also now use Houzz Pro, who can log in at any time, from wherever, and they know where everything is,” she says, “so it's really accessible for them and has also been a huge time-saver for me.”

Burton, a busy mum of two, says being able to expand her business while also saving time has been revolutionary. “Before, I was entering loads of things into Excel documents,” she says, “so it’s saved me a lot of time on my admin work, giving me more time to focus on actual design as well as more time to spend with my family.” She especially appreciates the automatic and continuous marketing tools Houzz provides. “I just haven’t had time to learn marketing, so it's been a really great tool for me to help grow my business,” she says. Having an online profile not only acts as a 24/7 marketing team, it also helps to enhance her professionalism. The ease of selecting, approving and declining options, as well as pulling off reports or tear sheets to add to presentations, streamlines the entire process and makes her business appear more accomplished.

Building an online portfolio that can be accessed from anywhere in the world has also helped Burton attract the right clientele. “I've got my projects all professionally photographed and detailed, which has really helped in getting the right clients, because people are coming to me based on who I am and on my style and values,” she says. The client’s experience is equally important to her. “Interior design is a real luxury service,” she says. “Essentially, you want to take all the stress away, so that you’re just left with the fun side of things.” Using online marketing software has allowed Burton to focus on offering clients that great experience. 

With the help of a Houzz account manager Burton has paid close attention to the guides and advice she has been sent, such as how to boost and manage her profile to stand out. “I've had a client come to me specifically because of my Houzz awards as well,” she says. “It really helped boost my brand outside of Houzz as well, leading me to become a recognised brand.”

Burton adds that she’s expanded into new areas, is working on a wide range of projects and now even offers e-design, in which clients can receive her services from the comfort of their homes. “It's a real privilege to be invited into a client's home,” she says, “so I want to make the whole experience really professional, but also really fun for them.” 

“I absolutely love being an interior designer,” Burton says. “It's definitely a job where I have to pinch myself on a daily basis.”

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