Guest Blogger #423, Entry #1037, March 23, 2012
In today’s economy, it’s challenging to develop just about any kind of business. It takes capital, it takes ever-evolving know-how and it takes a lot of dedicated time and hard work. However, when it comes to running your own company, the beauty in it all, what makes all of the sacrifice worth it, is that you know that you’re putting your blood, sweat and tears (sometimes literally) into building your dream rather than someone else’s. Therefore, if you have an interior design business, no matter what may be going on in the world financially, this is not the time to get discouraged. Use your knowledge, innovation and the following tips to provide your company with all that it needs to grow and flourish.
Image via: Bhg
Specialize in something
There are general practitioners and then there are board-certified plastic surgeons. When someone is ready for a facelift, which one do you think a patient is going to prefer? In many fields, including interior design, in order to get your degree, you have to be competent in many different areas. However, sometimes the way to increase your customer base is to develop a reputation for being exceptional in a certain area (or room). Maybe you know how to renovate a kitchen for a really inexpensive price. Maybe you can create amazing floors. Perhaps staging is your greater area of expertise. Don’t be hesitant to promote your strengths. Sometimes, that’s the quickest way to get (and keep) your foot in a prospective client’s door.
Unfortunately, a lot of business owners are so busy competing with other people that they don’t realize the benefit that can come from networking with them instead. Check within your city (including with your Chamber of Commerce) to see what groups there are for business owners. Use your Facebook and LinkedIn accounts to connect with other interior designers and interior design companies both in your state and throughout the country. Be open to teaching some classes at your church or at a non-profit organization. Getting your business cards out to enough people will eventually land them into just the hands that you need when it comes to getting more clientele for your company.
Stay above the bar
When it comes to the success of a lot of businesses, one thing that causes them to be heads above the rest is that they are constantly seeking out new information on the trends within their field, the companies that are starting up and ways to market their business in creative and affordable ways. There may be a degree hanging on your wall, but don’t let that keep you from furthering your education with classes, seminars, motivational CDs and DVDs, software, mentors or the wealth of free information that the Internet provides.
Image via: Cardigan Junkie
Internet marketing is one of the most powerful and economical ways to grow a business. Do you have a website that showcases some of your best work? If not, you can create one for a reasonable price on WordPress. If your budget doesn’t allow for an all-interactive website at the moment, you can create a blog for free (where you can still load up video) at Blogspot.com. There are also social media bookmarking sites like Digg.com and Magnolia.com to encourage people to save your site in their “Favorites” and share the link with others. For $30 per month, you can send out as many newsletters as you’d like to up to 1000 people with companies like ConstantContact.com. And why not let people know about your various promotions or designing discounts on your Twitter account?
Put the majority of the money that you do make back into your business
A huge mistake that a lot of people make, especially when they finally get far from being in the red, is that they spend their profits rather than putting the money back into their company. By choosing the latter, not only does it keep you from going into debt, but frees you up with more capital for advertising, traveling to conferences, hiring staff…and if you’re really fortunate, expanding your interior design business—the ultimate dream come true for any company owner!
For more interior makeover ideas on Stagetecture, click here.