When an entrepreneur or business owner searches the internet for help with online marketing, one of the first things the “experts” mention is building your brand. Of course, this presupposes that everyone understands what that means. It occurs to us that we too may have taken this for granted when we post interior design marketing tips so, let’s clear up a few things about brand building for your design business.MBASkool.com, is a “one-stop management knowledge portal and a B-School community for all MBA students, professionals and MBA institutes”.According to the Marketing Dictionary they offer, “Brand Building is generating awareness, establishing and promoting company using strategies and tactics. In other words brand building is enhancing brand equity using advertising campaigns and promotional strategies. Branding is crucial aspect of company because it is the visual voice of the company. Goal of brand building is creating a unique image about the company.”To put it more simply, brand building involves creating a unique identity for your design business; finding ways to separate yourself from your competition by displaying extraordinary talent, creativity, and knowledge as an interior designer.“Oooh Kaaay”, you may think. “But, just how do I do that?”5 Brand Building Tips for Interior DesignersBrand building can be initiated with a well thought brand identity which can help create a strong brand image which goes a long way in consolidating the brand.Here we offer 5 brand building tips to help:
- Target a local audience – The first thing to remember is that, to a very large extent, your design business is extremely localized. Relatively few designers are able to appeal to, and reach, a national audience. Your clients and prospects will live and work near you and, should you happen to gain a broader reputation, that is a huge plus. However, for now, keep your focus on building your brand as a local designer.
- Narrow market focus – It’s virtually impossible to be all things to all people. Needs and tastes vary greatly, from homeowner to homeowner and from business owner to business owner. Building brand awareness among your target audience requires that you fit yourself into a niche that others are not filling, or that you believe you are better at filling. Stick with what you’re best at doing, do what you enjoy doing, and the rest will follow.
- Use images – Whether you carry a portfolio or use a website to promote your design business, high quality pictures of the work you’ve done has real power as a brand building tool. While smart phone cameras have improved dramatically in recent years, you should carry a good digital camera at all times. Remember – you can never have enough images of your design work!
- Website copywriting – Clarity and consistency are the keys to creating a message that speaks to the hearts of your target audience. They are also critical to enabling you to overcome the challenge of creating an identity that connects with them on a personal level. Finding ways to overcome the detachment and skepticism of your audience, and prospective clients, may be the greatest challenge faced by designers who choose to market themselves online.
When you create your website copy, or perhaps have it done for you, focus on an approach that personalizes online interactions, allowing you to speak directly to the needs of your audience and prospects, in ways that clearly outline the benefits of working with you.
- Testimonials and reviews – Back in the day, relying on word of mouth recommendations from satisfied clients was a realistic way to find new business. Today though, as more and more business is done online, you will need to add a Testimonials Page to your website. The key to success here is to ask your clients for a review of your work… And update the page regularly with fresh testimonials.
Creating a unique identity for yourself and your design business can be difficult. The competition in most markets is fairly stiff but, if you can focus you marketing efforts in two areas, you should have success. These two areas are: 1) what matters you as a designer, and 2) what matters to your design clients.When those two things mesh, you have found brand building gold!Looking for more new interior design trends, designer marketing tips, and ideas? Get in touch with TD Fall today.