A guest post by Pamela Durkin, ASID, LEED AP ID+C
What if you could attract the type of client and project you’ve always dreamed of? And lessen the number of calls you get from those who don’t understand the value of design, who are looking for the cheapest price or are simply not a good fit for you? It sounds pretty terrific, right?
Well, that is totally possible. But, you have to really dial in the type of work you want to do and the type of client you want to work with. How do you do that? By being magnetic.
You’ve heard the saying, “It’s all in the details” and that applies here as well. You need to spend a little time digging into what you perfect future client looks like. There are a few layers to consider here:
What kind of projects do you want to work on, what are the ones that light you up the most? Write down all the details of an ideal scenario as it relates to a project. Keep in mind, you are designing this part of your business, so you get to choose what this looks like. Don’t like doing detailed drawings? Either remove that service or hire it out. I can’t tell you the number of designers that I speak with who want to only work on one area of design, like Window Treatments or Material Selections. Let me give you permission right now, to do just that. The more specific you can get, the better.
What kind of work are you doing that is the most profitable? Not the biggest top line number, but ones that garner the largest profit margin. Sometimes, we think that you can only make good money by selling products. That simply is not the case. Your ability to envision a space completed before a pen has been put to paper is a RARE GIFT, not your capability to purchase products. While many clients want you to purchase for them, which is a fine ancillary service, the magic you provide is in your creative problem-solving skills, don’t ever forget that!
What is the personality type of the clients you want to work with most? Do they make decisions quickly or need more time? Are they big picture thinkers or detailed oriented? Are they close with their family and friends? Here’s where you can create your perfect future client avatar – think of them as someone who combines all the best traits of your best clients into one person. Then, dive into what they worry about, and what keeps them up at night. Write down as many details as you can. Here’s where you can marry your services with their problems, needs, and wants.
When you have done all of the above, then you can write every email, blog post and social media post speaking directly to this person. You will start to have people reach out to you and say, “I felt like you were inside my head and speaking directly to me!” That’s when you know your message is resonating with the right people. You will also start getting less calls from those that are not a good fit, because what you are talking about will not speak to them. This is how you become magnetic to your perfect future client!
Design is powerful and Pam wants designers to step into that power. After almost 30 years in the design business, helping other designers create a business they love became a new passion for her. She teaches others how to be magnetic and attract the best clients. This method makes owning a design business easier and more fulfilling and who isn’t up for that? Her book, Elevate! Can be found here.