Archive for Marketing
We’ve all been there before. You spend a lot of time with a prospective client and just know you’re the right interior designer for them, but then they say, “I want to think about it.” Your heart sinks and you wonder what went wrong. You were so sure you were a good fit.
Why did they say that? Listen up, because this is really important. They want to think about it because you didn’t give them a good way to place a value on the benefits of your services. In other words, they don’t know why they should hire you. They’re confused. Always remember this: “The confused buyer says no.”
Think about the times you were in the market to buy something and you didn’t. If you were not clear about why you should buy something—what will it do for you? How will it solve your problem?—Then you won’t buy. You’ll do nothing.
It’s no different with your prospective clients. You need to maximize the value they see in your services so not only do they select you over other designers, but they pay more for your services, too. You’ll hear me say this a lot because it’s so important: “The more value your client sees in your solution, the more they’ll pay for it—period.”
So strive to build as much value as possible in your client’s eyes. One way to do this is to show how you can solve their problem better than anyone else. What do you do that will help your client achieve their goal better/faster/more easily than anyone else? The more you articulate this, the more value you’re building in your client’s eyes. And when you build value, instead of hearing, “I want to think about it,” you’ll hear, “When can we start?”
Want to learn more? If you missed last week’s groundbreaking complimentary training, you still have a chance to listen to the recording full of immediately applicable tools to transform your ability to close design clients now! Click here to sign up now.
I show interior designers how to take charge of their clients and make more money without being sales-y.
Read what fellow designers around the world are saying…
“…I have completely revamped our Sales/Proposal process and incorporated many of Maria’s techniques. Right out of the gate I am 5 for 5 in terms of closing my last five proposals, which is amazing! These processes work!” – Jamie H-B
“Because of a few simple strategies Maria taught me about being authentic and building rapport, I’ve since built my business on referrals vs. paying for advertising.” – Heather D.
“I was able to win back a client I had lost because of one simple step from your program.” – Jenn G.
“I got exactly what I needed and everything that was missing from my school experience.” – Sarah B.
“Your design solution was the most amazing formula I have ever heard!” – Mary
—Maria Bayer is Design Success University‘s Authentic Sales Coach.
Your success in business depends on your ability to answer this question:
“How are you different from other designers?”
You may hear it often from your prospective clients. If your response sounds something like, “I do kitchen design and bath design and …” then keep reading.
One of the biggest reasons that clients use price to select a designer is because you haven’t given them any other way to tell the difference between what you do and what your competitors do. They need to know what you uniquely provide that others don’t. Most importantly, they need to know how you can solve their problem better than anyone else.
How do you get the words to describe your unique value? Ask your best clients! They know better than anyone what makes you different, especially if they chose you over other designers. Once you know your unique value, you’ll not only stand out, but your Ideal Client will know that you’re the right designer for them!
Ask your best clients this question: “What were the key reasons you initially chose me as your designer vs all of the others you met?” and they’ll give you the exact words to describe what makes you stand out.
Want to learn more? Register for a complimentary 3-part series, “Three Secrets to Closing Higher Paying Clients Who Love Working With You.”
—Maria Bayer is Authentic Sales Coach for Design Success University. Her sales career started with a whimper before she learned the real secrets to selling without being sales-y. Bayer became a multimillion dollar salesperson and is known for her natural way of leading her clients to a close without being pushy. She created a sales program just for interior designers that is receiving rave reviews, and most importantly, the designers are making more money and enjoying how easy it is to close business.
We are an industry of brands in the K+B business. We represent cabinet brands, countertop brands, appliance brands, hardware and plumbing brands…oh well, you get it. But the most important brand in this conversation is your brand.
The pure definition of “brand” comes from the burning of a mark onto a product. Think cattle for a visual. So, the question remains, how do you burn your brand into the minds of your target consumers?
Hot Irons Not So Practical Today
Today’s shopper is savvier and educates themselves early in the shopping process in what is called the Greenhouse shopping phase. It’s here that you establish yourself as the brand in the consumers mind. What you stand for must be represented in the personality that identifies your brand when a consumer is defining their project.
Once defined, your brand must be reflected in your whole organization in the form of a brand promise. Each and every individual who represents the brand needs to be dialed into the personality. This is often intermingled with your workplace culture; if someone doesn’t fit your culture, they sure as heck won’t be able to represent your brand, right?
Remove the Brand Mess
Define your brand and cultivate it in the Greenhouse. Nurture it and soon it will grow to represent your value add to the sale. Who knows, you could be the Starbucks of the K+B industry!
This picture is from a Next125 advertisement. I believe it is supposed to convey the belief that design should be in harmony with nature. I don’t get it.
The leaves on the floor really bother me and I certainly don’t get the inclusion of goats. The one on top of the countertop is cute but that can’t be very sanitary. So far the untidiness of the picture has made me forget about the contemporary cabinets.
What do you think? What if the goat on the countertop was a bunny rabbit and the floors were a beautiful parquet? Would that do a better job of explaining their Philosophy?
I’ve seen many companies showcase a piece of contemporary furniture in a historic building and it’s generally an effective advertising scheme. If they want to tie these cabinets and their materials to nature, why not place the vignette in a field? A sunny field with green grass and wild flowers would be better than the gloomy interior above that makes me think of a foreclosed home.