Where to spend your interior design business marketing effort — and dollars
Marketing yourself is one of the most important things for your interior design business — even if it feels daunting — and kind of scary — at times. But guess what, it doesn’t have to be that way, and it doesn’t have to be a huge investmentment of your time or money either.
First off, be yourself. I’ve said this before, but I’ll say it again: Being yourself is one of the best investments for your business. You’ll attract the best clients because they will be the ones who are drawn not just to your design prowess but also your energy. And having great clients just makes what we do more fun (and easier, too).
Once you’ve figured out your interior designer voice, it’s time to start marketing yourself and your interior design business. Here are four places to start:
Social media is key — and it’s free
It’s really important to be consistent with your social media posts. We’re talking a minimum of three posts a week here, folks.
Facebook and Instagram are the main platforms you want to target, and Pinterest is great too especially for the interior design industry we’ve chosen to work in. If you can’t outsource these postings to a social media whiz (and if you can, you should), you can maximize your time by investing in a scheduling tool.
Sites and apps such as Planoly, Buffer and Tailwind allow you to preplan your posts. Just set and forget. If you’re feeling crazy, you can even schedule out a month at a time, but aim for at least a week.
Also, make sure you’re taking advantage of hashtags, especially locally based ones. And your messaging should be on target. That means knowing your ideal client profile and addressing their pain points. These are all key to turning social media clicks and likes into potential clients.
Last, but certainly not least, don’t forget to put your face on it. Your ultimate goal is to attract clients and you do that by not just showing off your amazing designs but also putting a face to a name — and brand — and showcasing the energy you’ll bring to any project.
Getting into clients email inboxes
Social media is great, but it only goes so far. The goal is to convert those social media followers into business contacts: Basically get them to shift from social media to email.
Email marketing is a great no-cost solution that will really pay off. What you want to do is send out informational newsletters, and yes, you really do have to give in order to get. By giving away your thoughts, expertise and advice, you will set yourself up as an industry expert. Potential clients get to know you — and bonus!!! — trust you know what the heck you’re talking about.
Don’t be concerned that giving away this information for free means clients won’t come knocking at your door. If they’re not hiring you because of the tips you’re sending, then they are not the clients for you anyway.
Also, make sure that your newsletters are timed properly. If you set them up as a series based on when someone signs up for the newsletter, then you’re going to end up sending someone a Christmas-themed email in the middle of July. You might love the whole Christmas in July thing, but for a lot of folks it’s just too damn early. Instead, you can either set up a string of evergreen newsletters or write a new one every week or two that is fresh and timed to when it will arrive in subscribers’ inboxes.
Build it and they will come
But how, exactly, do you entice people to sign up for your email list and add yet another weekly or biweekly email to their already overflowing inbox? Create some fun quizzes and free downloads.
You don’t have to go overboard and spend a ton of time on these. It can be simple cheat sheets like how to make your bed look like an interior designer put it together without using 9,000 pillows or your top 10 favorite white paint colors right now.
Think about what would be interesting for subscribers to read, whether it’s something they’re going to implement themselves, hire out for or just mark down as ideas for future renovations and home refreshes. Good fodder can even come from your current clients: What are some things they’re asking you for right now?
Remember, this is the long game. Add subscribers to your email list and you will eventually convert some of them into paying clients down the road.
Feed the Google beast
Social media may be king these days, but blogging remains imperative for a couple reasons: It informs Google that you are, in fact, alive and these posts can be blasted out to your email list.
All you need to do is update your blog once a month with a new post. This really helps with SEO (search engine optimization) because Google sees you’re updating with fresh content and will rank you higher than sites that rarely — or never — post anything new. That means more eyeballs directed toward you more often when someone pulls up a search.
Clients might not start calling you tomorrow, but I promise they will find you and they will call you. And remember, if you’re not up to figuring out all the ins and outs of social media, blogging, email newsletters and SEO, there’s a simple solution: Outsource to the experts or hire one yourself.
Trust me, you’ll thank me later.
Need more business insights and advice? Join me in my Interior Designer's Business Launchpad — my free group on Facebook where I offer weekly coaching sessions to help your business thrive while creating beautiful spaces.