St Augustine, St Johns County Real Estate & Home Staging


Up North & Down South, HGTV's Matthew Finlason challenges Home Stagers with Target Staging

HGTV Host Matthew Finlason takes his SAR Advanced Staging Class on the road again, this time up north to Indianapolis, Toronto and Ottawa, then down south to Atlanta, challenging home stagers and the home staging industry to ditch the tired basics and up the ante with Target Staging.  Target Staging, a term Matthew coined in Las Vegas at the 2011 RESA Convention during his keynote speach, helps dial in specific buyers through research and a careful understanding of demographics, lifestyle merchandising and storytelling.  To help home stagers accomplish this quickly and accurately he developed the Buyer Demographic Profile (BDP), Seller Demographic Profile (SDP) and Why, Why NOT form (WWN).  Using these tools, home stagers can not only quickly identify the correct demographic to stage but accurately and easily convey their plan to their clients.  This has resulted in amazing business transformations for those who took the class during its launch. 


Matthew Finalson home staging "I LOVE my new staging language that I learned from you, Matthew!!! I secured a staging project yesterday just because I was the only one able to communicate with this highly knowledgeable Real Estate who specializes in target marketing. I would never have been able to secure this business if not because of this. Today the agent sent me HGTV photos of styles she sees as appropriate for the target buyer and I confirmed with her that after doing my demographic and psychographic profile analysis I came up with the exact same styles - she was certainly impressed by the terminology that I used. She told me earlier on that I was running up against 2 designers for this job. I am just starting to having the absolute best time and fun...... Thank you Matthew!"  Birgit Anich, Birgit Anich Staging and Interiors

"I am so excited!! I just received the bid on a 7.5 million listing 12, 743 sq ft. home. Thanks to Matthew and his BDP, BPP and Lifestyle Merchandising!!!!!" Karen Simpson, Designs by K


Matthew Finalson Home StagingHelping create exceptional imagery, marketing and overall business concepts is something that Finlason excels at.  He has worked for some of the largest home staging firms in the world and been the host of multiple television shows.  Currently working on a new production schedule, getting these classes to the home staging industry has been a challege.  Creating an intimate environment where each student gets attention and dedication to their specific company's needs has been something Finlason simply won't budge on, however.  Class size is limited and students are expected to answer a series of telling questions about their current marketing visuals, difficulties and personal critiques prior to class so that each class is centered around the needs of the students attending.  Because of the complicated nature of scheduling and class/student demands, only a handful of classes will be offered each year. 

Advanced Staging & Design Course Outline


o   The Stereotypical Identity

o   The New Identity

o   New Expectations


 Day I: Raising the Professional Bar: Business, Marketing & Client Management

o   Introduction to TARGET STAGING

o   Understanding Target Marketing


     1.       Research DEMEOGRAPHICS/ Form A: Why BUY this home VS Why NOT to BUY this home.

     2.       Identify DEMOGRAPHICS/ Form B: Buyer's Demographic Profile

     3.       THE STAGING BLUEPRINT/ Floor Plan A, Floor Plan B, Floor Plan C


     1.       Marketing Materials


     3.       DRESSING TO SELL - 5 Tips

     4.       TAKING THE LEAD




     1.       New Services

     2.       Targeting Service

     3.       Trade Referrals

     4.       Selling Furniture & Art

o   LEVERAGING THE MEDIA............. HANDOUTS: 6 Steps, Public Relations, Press Release


DAY 2 RAISING THE CREATIVE BAR - Advanced Design & The Creative Process



    2.       SOLD ON COLOR: Step Outside The Neutral Zone



    5.       MIXING AESTHETIC: To Target Demographics


    7.       CREATING DRAMA WITH LIGHTING: The Triangulation Effect


    9.       MIRRORS: The Story In Reflection




   13.   DUAL PURPOSE: Maximizing Room Function


Class Dates

Indianapolis, IN September 10 & 11

Ottawa, Canada September 24 & 25 (Date may change due to current production schedule. May be required to provide a television appearance waiver due to filming.)

Toronto, Canada September 30 & October 1 (Date may change due to current production schedule. May be required to provide a television appearance waiver due to filming.)

Atlanta, GA November 12 & 13

The course cost is $1695.  Easy payment plan available, see website for details.  Classes are already filling up so make your reservations quickly.  $100 off classes if registered by September 30th. 


Matthew Finalson home staging"****Matthew's course has already paid dividends.***

I had a great week putting what I learned into practice:

1-Lined up two great resources for original artwork. Matthew's advice made me realize that I was not looking hard enough to find what I needed. It was easier to complain that it was not available than figure out where it was.
2-Made contact with a realtor that I knew had seen and liked my work, so I called and discussed "lifestyle merchandising" with him. His comment was "Yes, it's all about the lifestyle". He has been using another stager, but wants to give me a try for his next staging."  Gary Sefferman, Nickian Home Staging


Matthew Finlason home staging"Since Matthew's class I have sold  my Lifestyle Merchandised homes in three weeks or less and the owners have been offered more than the listing price.  In fact, my home that the real estate agent wanted to give to the "Unsellables" ,  sold in 14 days with 4 offers and for $5,000 more than the listing price of $600,000.  So it wasn't a cheap house.  It wasn't unsellable it just needed to be Target Staged and Lifestyle Merchandise.  I owe my recent success the Advanced Staging class by Matthew Finlason and Melissa for having the insight to know what we needed in the field."  Sandy Boeser, Divine Auditions

"What I realized is that I have been creating stories. In almost all of my stagings, I have included slippers and robes, books with eyeglasses, tea cups and folded newspapers, family photographs, canisters filled with pasta, dipping oils next to Italian cookbooks and so on. The problem is that my professional photographs do not include "aesthetic pictures". Thank you, Matthew, for telling me to SHOWCASE those special moments!" Debbie Ouvley, Amazing Space NYC

            Matthew Finlason home staging      Matthew Finlason Home Staging


 Author Bio: Melissa Marro, Home Staging Industry leader, Realtor, and entrepreneur offers a unique perspective on New Home Construction, Resale Residential Real Estate, and Home Staging

For more information on buying or selling in the Fleming Island, Orange Park, or Jacksonville, area, visit or call Melissa Marro (marro.melissa at, Keller Williams First Coast Realty, for more information (904-466-2093).


Comment balloon 10 commentsMelissa Marro • July 12 2011 02:13PM


Can I take it again? It was soooo much fun and sooo much information!!! I love Matthew's spirit!!!

Posted by Birgit Anich, CT Home Stager Fairfield & New Haven County (Birgit Anich Staging & Interiors, 203.807.4040) almost 8 years ago

Birgit - you certainly would be welcome to "audit" the course at no additional cost since you've already taken it.  I'll be at the Indy course as well. 

Posted by Melissa Marro, Jacksonville Real Estate and Home Staging (Keller Williams First Coast Realty - The Marro Team) almost 8 years ago

Matthew's course is not like any other out there.  He gives you all the tools for success, especially in the luxury market.  It's a totally different perspective on how to approach staging.  Indianapolis, Toronto, Ottawa, and Atlanta will never be the same.

Posted by Gary Sefferman, NICKIAN HOME STAGING - NY (Nickian Home Staging) almost 8 years ago

Thanks for the kind words Gary.  I'm extremely proud of what Matthew has created here and thrilled that we are the company to bring it to stagers. 

Posted by Melissa Marro, Jacksonville Real Estate and Home Staging (Keller Williams First Coast Realty - The Marro Team) almost 8 years ago

I find myself using his terminology and practices more and more. It was well worth the investment and if he ever makes it back to Dallas again, you know I'll be back to audit!

Posted by Karen Otto, Plano Home Staging, Dallas Home Staging, (Home Star Staging) almost 8 years ago

Karen - I believe Austin will be on the list next time around.... working around his schedule has been interesting for sure!!  I can't wait until he can share more of what he's up to with everyone.  Exciting stuff for sure! 

I love hearing how past students are doing so well after incorporating his methods into their business!!

Posted by Melissa Marro, Jacksonville Real Estate and Home Staging (Keller Williams First Coast Realty - The Marro Team) almost 8 years ago

Melissa--This course sounds so amazing and I've read along the way what other stagers have said about it.  Now can we package Matthew up and get him to Maui?

Posted by Janet Jones, Home Staging, Interior Redesign Kihei, Maui, Hawaii (Just Your Style Interiors, LLC) almost 8 years ago

Melissa - any chance he might come to DC in the future? I'll do everything I can to spread the word around here. . .

Posted by Lynn Crawford, Staging DC & Maryland (A Different View) almost 8 years ago

Janet & Lynn - We would need 8-10 students at a minimum to get Matthew to come to a specific area. 

Posted by Melissa Marro, Jacksonville Real Estate and Home Staging (Keller Williams First Coast Realty - The Marro Team) almost 8 years ago

I really hope Eastern Stagers take advantage of Matthew's upcoming course.  They'd be CRAZY to miss out on this opportunity.  It will increase their business and set them apart from the competition. 

Posted by Sally Weatherley, Vancouver Home Staging, Home Stager Vancouver, B.C (EXIT STAGE RIGHT) almost 8 years ago

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