Interior Design Business Marketing Strategies – What Value Do You Bring to Your Clients?

Yesterday I gave my first teleseminar. Other than me giving out the wrong phone number to my attendees, I think it went really well. I gave lots of good information and even had a chance to talk about my new upcoming telesummit which is going to be absolutely fabulous!

So I felt really good about helping designers build a better business for their firms and today I went on Twitter to find someone sending a link to a blog post that designers are taking any kind of job right now to survive.

I felt very sad to see that and, although I know times are not as good as everyone would like, I so strongly believe that interior designers need to really start to think differently about their business models.

As I said in the seminar last night, I am a business consultant for the interior design sector and even I had to start to incorporate new marketing techniques like Social Media into my marketing plans. But I do not discount my fees because we are in hard times.

At the risk of really sounding quite pompous (and I apologize in advance because I am not), but my fees are as valuable in good or bad economies. In fact, I should RAISE my fees in a bad economy (which, of course, I do not)

So I have some advise for interior designers to help reinvent their business strategies:

(1) You are not selling design. Design is a product just like when I was selling beautiful product from Donghia and Larsen. It’s beautiful as I am sure your design work is, but there is a lot from which to choose out there. Offer VALUE. People will pay for what they perceive as value. How much is a Starbucks coffee? Do they apologize for the price? NO they RAISE it!

(2) Sell you entire design company. The value it will bring to a client. The experience your client will have working with you. Your business philosophy, the way you work, how your staff works to keep the project flawless.

(3) Use creative marketing ideas like blogging, Twitter, Linkedin…but learn how to use them strategically if you don’t already know otherwise it will just suck up your time….BUT FIRST AND FOREMOST

(4) DEFINE YOUR TARGET MARKET – once you do..dig deeper NOT wider.

(5) Network in a TARGET RICH ENVIRONMENT. But until you name that target, you will not be able to network, will you?

You have much more value to a target market than you do if you cast your net to try to catch anything. How many resources are you wasting by TRYING to get a client. Wouldn’t it be so much better to have clients know who YOU are? Until you define that target market you are one of a thousand interior design firms.

I know that might hurt to read that, but if I said I was a consultant, what does that tell you? What value do I bring to the table? I am one in a million out of work people (as someone once told me when I told them I was a consultant). This person asked me to dig deeper and find my value to future clients and I am asking interior designers to think the same way!