ABOUT Dana Helms is a social media guru! Working as a Client Service Account Manager for MicroD, she helps people and companies make sure they are getting the best bang for their buck for their marketing solutions. For the last year and a half she has been concentrating on ePiphany, MicroD’s our website platform. But this technology expert has now expanded into the home decor and furniture industry, helping clients in the home decor and furnishings industry convert imagination into reality. AND She has recently become the first Vice President of Social Media at WithIt, a group whose mission is to encourage and develop leadership, mentoring, education and networking opportunity for professional women in the home and furnishings industries. What a way to pave the way for the history of social media and home decor!
Robin Baron: What do you love most about what you do?
Dana Helms: Bringing the latest and greatest technology to the home and furnishings industry. Staying on top of what is new and finding better ways for clients to promote their products online is energizing. I like to get customers excited and proud of their sites! Not to mention furniture markets! I have been to many furniture markets from High Point to Vegas and by far that is one thing I love about my job. Visiting face to face with clients is priceless, especially since we service manufacturers and retailers all over the US and in other countries. The showrooms are a bonus too! I love going to furniture markets to get ideas and see all the great products vendors are showing. Designers get a lot of respect from me when I see a showroom that has been tirelessly worked on from dawn till dusk for us to enjoy. They inspire me to ensure I make my home my own. When I can I take as many pictures as possible so I can use their great ideas for my own home.
RB: What in your work are you most proud of?
DH: I have just celebrated my 6th year with MicroD and I am proud to have been part of such a dynamic team and such creative people. I am also proud of my personal development, please don’t think that is being cocky, but I started out in this company knowing just enough to be able to call a client and talk to them about furniture and how to put fabric on a frame on the computer. I can now train clients on management of website, learned technology terms that I am not sure if I stayed in the retail business I would have had the opportunity to learn. Personal investment is key in your growth with a company and I firmly believe you should never stop growing and learning. The saying “You can’t teach and old dog new tricks” means nothing to me!
RB: What’s inspiring you now?
DH: I have a few things that are going on right now that I am excited about and inspiring me. Currently MicroD is growing and we have a few new talented folks that are brining fresh new ideas to the table. I like a fresh outlook on things when you have been at something for a while. Sometimes a fresh pair of eyes or a new way of thinking is what you need. Sometimes it’s a reminder of the things you knew all along and just needed to have that tapped into. Our clients inspire me! I like to share my technology knowledge with them and help them grow their business with the ideas I present. Just like a home a website needs to be refreshed and reworked.
Just think of your retail, design or manufacturer site like you would your house. When you get bored with something you clean it out. You may reuse something in another room or you may get rid of it all together. That makes room for a new look. In your home, you change a picture, repaint, and reupholster, or go in search for new accessories. The same rules apply on your website and you need to do the same thing. Update images on the home page, change the text to be something relevant on the home page as often as once or twice a month so your customers know where to find you, what they can find there and what your company is about. Just like your home you want to inspire people. The home page of your website should do that. Capture the customer to turn them into that brick and mortar customer.
RB: How would you describe your own home décor?
DH: Comfortable. I like our home to be a representation of our family. We love to gather in the living room for games, movies and snuggling. We like warm colors. Brown, greens and dark woods. When we shop for furniture I like the designers that have worked in the showrooms to have picked and placed everything that I want to buy together. Basically if a vignette catches my eye we will go with the whole thing! A sofa, loveseat, and tables. Just keep in mind if we are buying living room furniture that must match the recliner. If the rug is right I am taking that too! And I have to give the credit to my husband he actually has a really good eye for what looks good and what does not. I am just along for the ride.
RB: What design elements in your home have you personalized?
DH: Our personal signature in our home I would have to say is our walls. We have painted them to be warm rich colors. When we first got the townhouse we actually came in 3 days before we were due to move in (with permission) so we could paint everything we wanted first before we moved it. It had to be perfect before we would put any furniture in it. So my husband, the kids and I stayed here till all hours of the night to get the house painted so it would be just right. We are those people that bring in fabric samples, take home paint samples, get a little bit of paint, test it on the wall…. Then we buy! I love painting but something’s are better just right the first time.
RB: What do you love most about your home and why?
DH: I truly believe décor is the key to a good home. For us I just love that our house is ours. It’s functional, not over decorated, and its comfortable. I always wanted a house to be the place the kids want to come and eat and fellowship and our home is that place. We have a large loft upstairs that the kids come too and can play games, video and board games. Pictures are key to our house. I love walking in and seeing my family everywhere.
RB: What is the one thing in your home that everyone always comments on?
DH: When someone views the home from the outside they don’t know all the space inside. When folks visit they come in and see all the space 2200 sq ft. and its open and airy. Walking in the home you walk into the kitchen that has a huge cut out that you can see through to the dining room and the living room. I like the open concept because I like to be in the kitchen, but I like to be involved with my family and friends when they visit.
> all images courtesy of Dana Helms.
Each Friday Simplifying Fabulous! presents Fab Fridays, an up-close-and-personal look at how one of our community members simplifies fabulous in their own life. Is there someone you’d like to see featured? Email your submission to email@example.com.