The World Floor Covering Association (WFCA) has completed the third leg of its largest-yet coast-to-coast media tour. According to the organization, the annual tour is a key part of its ongoing effort to educate consumers about new floor products, trends and technologies.
Scott Humphrey, CEO, WFCA, and public relations agency of record Story Dept. are meeting with target consumer press in New York, Birmingham, Ala., Des Moines Iowa, as well as targets in Northern and Southern California, over the course of four months. The tour will wrap in late summer. By that time the WFCA team will have met with and provided information and product demonstrations for more than 70 editors and writers from over 40 of the top nationally distributed home and shelter magazines and newspapers, as well as some of the home décor focused websites, according to the organization.
To prepare for the tours, WFCA trend scouts select new products that launched at the Surfaces tradeshow and industry-wide to share with press. In total, the WFCA contacted over 40 Surfaces exhibitors and manufacturers from around the world to participate in the tours. Making the list for 2014 are 35 products ranging from paper shag area rugs to reclaimed hardwood floors made from truck decks.
This year’s tour kicked off in late April in New York - home to the country’s largest concentration of consumer home and shelter magazines. The three-day NYC leg, which took place April 29 hrough May 1, included stops at Interior Design, Good Housekeeping, Elle Décor, HGTV Magazine, Veranda, Traditional Home, This Old House, House Beautiful, The Nest, Parents and others.
The second leg of the tour took place just two weeks later. The WFCA team met with editors and writers from Time, Inc.’s Southern Living and Coastal Living magazines in Birmingham on May 15th. WFCA catered a sit down lunch in the publisher’s boardroom, where fourteen editors working on all sectors of the two books listened and took notes as products from every category of flooring were discussed.
On May 29 the WFCA embarked on the third leg of the tour in Des Moines, home to Meredith Corporation’s family of magazines. Twenty editors, writers, online contributors and photographers joined the WFCA presentation that took place within one of the company’s boardrooms. Attendees enjoyed a WFCA-catered lunch while listening to informative discussions and taking part in hands-on presentations of each new flooring product. Represented magazines included Better Homes & Gardens, BHG.com, Traditional Home, BH&G Real-Life Kitchens & Baths, Midwest Living, BHG Kitchen & Bath Ideas, BHG Remodel, Meredith Publications (BHG Book Series) and BHG Home Design Group, among others.
Mid-summer, the team will travel to Northern California to meet with editors at such publications as Sunset Magazine, California Home + Design and The Oakland Tribune among others. Meetings will also be arranged on an ongoing basis with Southern California based media outlets including California Homes, Coast Magazine and The Orange Country Register.
According to the organization, editors in every market visited so far made clear how much they look forward to the WFCA road show tours and how much they appreciate the association’s efforts to keep them informed about current trends and the latest developments in flooring products
“Our association is in a unique and strategic position to influence and educate consumer press about flooring,” said Humphrey. “We do not manufacturer any products and are not pushing particular products. The press recognizes our voice as uniquely unbiased and pays attention to that voice.”
“Through our relationships we have access and a platform to reach some of the most influential media in the world and make a meaningful difference in how our industry is positioned,” Humphrey added. “Our presentations provide an opportunity unlike any other to showcase the dedication to quality and never-ending creativity of our flooring industry, as well as our commitment to our customers.”