Scott Humphrey, Chief Executive Officer, WFCA, announced recently that the first leg of the WFCA annual consumer media tour in Manhattan was a tremendous success. Following New York, the WFCA team will take the tour to Birmingham, AL to meet with Southern Living and other outlets; Des Moines to meet with the Better Homes & Gardens family of publications; San Francisco to meet with Sunset magazine and others; and the tour will culminate in Southern California where the representatives will interface with targeted newspapers and metro books.
To prepare for the tours, WFCA trend scouts select innovative new products that launched at the Surfaces tradeshow to share with press. In total, the WFCA contacted over forty manufacturers from around the world to participate in the tours. Making the list for 2013 are products ranging from area rugs made from recycled silk Sari dresses to a cork laminate line.
The tour kicks off each year in New York, the media capital of the country. New York is home to the country’s largest collection of consumer home and shelter magazines targeting women. The NYC leg which took place on May 2nd, 3rd and 4th, included stops at O, Oprah Magazine, Woman’s Day, Good Housekeeping, Veranda, Interior Design, Country Living, Popular Mechanics, Elle Décor, HGTV Magazine, Traditional Home, This Old House, House Beautiful, Distinctive Kitchens & Baths, Parents, and more.
The reception from media sources this year has been very positive, with nearly all reporting that they plan on using the information provided in feature articles in upcoming issues.
“As an association we have a unique opportunity to seed stories with the most important consumer press outlets,” said Humphrey. “We provide an unbiased voice about flooring that is sought after and respected by the editors. With no agenda to place articles about specific product lines, we are able to serve as a sounding board as well as a catalyst for story ideas. Through the relationships that we foster and nurture on our media tours each year we become a source that editors call when they are working on articles involving flooring. We in turn are able to pass these opportunities for press coverage along to our members. The opportunity to have conversations about flooring with the very people that are influencing millions of consumers across the country is priceless in my book.”
The 2013 media tours are staffed by Humphrey and Leah Gross-Harmon, principal of Story Dept., LLC — the WFCA’s public relations agency of record.
Following the 2012 tour, manufacturers that participated were featured in magazines including: House Beautiful, Better Homes & Gardens, Traditional Home and Signature Kitchens and Baths just to name a few. In total the WFCA consumer awareness campaign generated hundreds of millions of consumer impressions with over $9,000,000 estimated ad equivalency.