How to Get Your Interior Design Clients to Sell You on Working with Them
Interior designers … this is for you!
So many interior designers have told me that the get nervous when they meet a prospective client for the first time. That’s completely understandable. After all, you want them to like you enough to hire you, right? How would you like to learn an easy way to change the dynamic so they’re trying to convince you why they’d be a great client?
It all comes down to perspective. If first meetings make you nervous, then it’s because you’re looking at it from the wrong perspective. Instead of trying to impress them, you should approach first meetings as your opportunity to assess the potential opportunity.
It is your right and your responsibility to accept clients:
- With whom you enjoy working
- Whose projects are within the scope of your preferred services
- Who are most likely to hire an interior designer
- Who can afford you
- Who treat you with respect
In fact, one of the key things that successful business owners have in common is that they know how to qualify prospective clients.
So the purpose of your initial meeting with a prospective client is to qualify them. You should be asking questions to determine whether they are a good fit for you from a client, design and monetary perspective.
What one simple statement can you use to shift the dynamic? Just before you ask them about their project, say this:
“I’d like to use this meeting/call to understand your needs and project goals so I can determine whether or not I’m the best designer to help you. Would it be OK if I asked you some questions?”
This immediately shifts the dynamic and tells the prospective client that your number one priority is not ‘selling’ them, but determining whether you are mutual fit. And here’s the best part: when you do this, your prospective client will sense your confidence and work harder to sell YOU! That is called “getting a yes.”
Also, share that you may not be the right designer for them, and the purpose of the meeting is to determine if you’re a good fit.
And then ask, “Would it be OK with you if we decide if we both want to go to the next step during the call?” This eliminates you wondering one way or the other if the client intends to hire you.
I promise you, every designer who has shifted to this approach has breathed a sigh of relief and has never looked back.
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