It’s easy to dismiss YouTube as a mess of jump-cut editing, rants, clickbait titles and DIY hacks. But consider this: The platform has more than 2 billion monthly active users—almost twice as many as Instagram. As a search engine, it ranks second only to Google. If it’s a mess, it’s a big one, with plenty of opportunity. No surprise, then, that the fashion, music and beauty industries have embraced the platform with open arms. By contrast, home design—especially the high end—has lagged behind.
Recently, a few luxury brands and publications have been tiptoeing onto YouTube to try and fill that space. Some have already made names for themselves, like Architectural Digest’s wildly successful Open Door series, but luxury design content is still somewhat of a Wild West. Those currently succeeding are capitalizing on personality-driven content in slick, professional packaging. They may still be on the cutting edge, but things are starting to stick.
CREATING “THE LOOK”
Though production value has been upped across the board in recent years, most popular YouTube videos have a relatively low-budget look and feel. Often, that’s the point—creators are usually running DIY operations, and this character-driven, homespun authenticity is part of their appeal. But design relies more on envy-inducing visuals than your everyday lifestyle vlog.
How to make content that feels high-end and right for the platform?
Courtesy of Designer Home Tours
Laura Bindloss, founder of design PR agency Nylon Consulting, recently created the Designer Home Tours video series on YouTube. In each episode, an acclaimed interior designer takes viewers on a personality-driven tour of a luxury home they designed. Bindloss shot all of the first season’s content on her iPhone 12, but viewers wouldn’t know it. To make the finished product look appropriately luxe, she relies on editing. “Where we spend the money is on professional video editors,” she says. To complete the story, she mixes professional still shots—worthy of a glossy magazine—with her iPhone footage.
“When I first did it, I thought I’d just take snaps on my iPhone while I was there and we can use those in the video, but it was so clear that it didn’t work,” says Bindloss. “It has to be professional photography, otherwise it just looks terrible.”
Stacey Bewkes, the founder and editor of the Quintessence lifestyle blog and YouTube channel, was an early adopter of the platform, publishing her first video on YouTube 10 years ago. She has seen considerable success since then, with …….