Are you constantly complaining about cheap clients? Those people who want to use your services but don’t want to pay much for them? This has always been a common complaint among designers.
In my coaching practice, I listen to designers stories about “shrinking to fit” small budgets, and the demanding clients they work for, and my heart breaks for them.
Are you giving more and more, and getting less and less back?
This is a problem that you can solve, but you need to know that the solution begins with you. You must have a clear understanding of the value you bring to a design job and the results the client will get when they hire you. Then, you will be able to set strong boundaries around your work and your time.
Being able to say no to a client’s unreasonable requests, and then make the offer of what you can do for them, will result in better jobs and bigger fees.
Tip#1 – Use the “budget on the fly” process to immediately determine a potential clients real budget. Right then, decide if this is the client for you or not. It is perfectly fine to tell a client who wants to buy an $899.00 sofa, that you cannot help them.
Tip #2 – Raise your minimum fee when you take on a job. Do not sell your time by the hour, and certainly, do not charge an hour at a time. Create an entry-level design package fee, representing three to four hours of your time, and then explain what you can realistically get done in that time. Move your old clients up to the new rates as well.
Tip #3 – Familiarize yourself with better quality, higher-end materials, furniture and fabrics than what you have been using. Start designing with, and specifying, those higher-end products. It has been my experience that you will sell whatever it is you are excited about.
Tip #4 – Get out of your office and start networking with people who are connected to your target clients. Make your circles bigger, and when networking, talk with confidence and enthusiasm about who you are and what you do. You will be amazed at how quickly you will connect with your target clients.