When I was in design school, CAD was the only technology you had to worry about as an interior designer.
Lucky for me, it was complicated, massive in scale, and completely non user friendly. :-) Needless to say I didn’t use it again after I graduated.
Nowadays the internet is part of everyone's lives and lucky for you... it’s much less scary.
I still believe that getting out there to meet people face to face is the absolute best way to find new design clients (hey, I’m old school). When you strike up a conversation about interior design with a troubled homeowner, you have the chance to impress them with your friendly personality and your non-judgy design advice.
But not everyone feels comfortable in social settings, and the odds that you’ll happen to be in front of someone who needs a designers help is enough to make some designers give up on finding new clients all together.
Does that mean that you’re stuck finding clients online in an impersonal and robotic way? Not at all. All you need to do is use the internet in the same way that you would if you’re meeting a new client face to face.
The secret to attracting your ideal clients is still in the connections that you make, and in the way that you present your business and yourself.
I spent some time looking at the online profiles of some successful interior designers, and here are a few tips that I’d love to share...
When you’re creating your profiles online, remember that it’s important to be yourself. Share a bit of your personality in your descriptions, and write as if you were “talking” to your ideal clients.
Ask yourself: What do they need? What are they looking for? What are they afraid of? Tell them how you empathize with them and why you’re the BEST designer for the job.
Don’t list your prices. You’ll lock yourself into projects and clients that are hiring you for the wrong reasons.
Don’t describe your design style unless you specialize in only one niche. Remember you are going to design their dream room, so the clients style is your new specialty.
Most importantly, avoid using too many “I” statements. Your clients don’t want to know how important you are, they want to know how you can help THEM and solve THEIR problems.
We're so lucky to have this amazing advertising tool at our fingertips, but your blog, your webpage, your Houzz profile... it can all seem very overwhelming. So what really works?
I want to ask you to share with our group. What online services have you used as a designer that you love, and which ones were a complete waste of time? Angieslist, Thumbtack, Houzz, Craigslist, Home Advisor.
What works and what doesn’t? Some seem like they only cost a few dollars here and there, but that money can quickly add up and leave you frustrated and broke.
Share your stories on our Design for a Living Facebook Page here, or write to me and I’ll make sure that they get posted.
We have to stick together if we want to build a bigger, stronger design community.