Singapore is well known for having one of the most advanced design industry in the world. Some learning institutions include School of Arts & Design and NAFA. They offer Interior Design courses that equip students with the skills required to work in this lucrative industry. To have a steady flow of clients, you need to be good at promoting yourself. In this article, we will look at how to market your interior design and architecture business in Singapore, especially with beautiful website designs to carry your brand.
You need to realise that there are hundreds of interior design companies operating in the country. New and existing service providers need to work smart to market their services to the customers. Here are some tips on how to sell your interior design services in Singapore.
Update your Signature Line and Business Cards
It is true that we are in a fast-paced digital world, but this shouldn’t be a reason to underestimate the traditional business cards. If you attend trade fairs and exhibitions, do not leave without handing them to potential customers. Business cards should reflect your professionalism.
You can include details of appellations that you have earned such as PMP, NCIDQ, and LEED. Do not shy away from mentioning some of the professional bodies that you are a member of, for instance the Society of Interior Designers Singapore (SIDS). This paints a positive image of your company.
Set Up a Dynamic Website
The high number of internet users in the country means there are plenty of opportunities online. You can seize these opportunities is by setting up a website. By doing so, you will stand out from your competitors and build your brand. Ensure that the site functions well in mobile devices. This is because most internet users in Singapore use their mobile phones/tablets to access the internet. Implement a call-to-action to help keep the consumers engaged.
And, lastly, start blogging! Blogs can help demonstrate your expertise and develop your business voice. When you reach the eight to nine blog posts per month mark, you will begin to see a geometrical increase in your website’s traffic. That said, thrice a month is way better than none at all.
Blogging is an ideal way to give your visitors some clue of what to expect from your interior design and architecture business. For instance, you could post a photo of summer colour schemes before the season kicks off to engage visitors of your website.
Pay Per Click Advertising
Commonly referred to as search engine marketing (SEM), it is a great way to improve your site’s visibility on search engines. This technique enables you to pay search engines like Google to advertise your business. You target certain keywords and it’s only when internet users click on them that you pay. Using this strategy, links to your site will appear on the sponsored section of search results.
Search Engine Optimisation (SEO)
This is another great way to improve the ranking of your site on search engines. Unlike SEM, you don’t pay for anything. The first thing you need to do is optimise your site with local keywords such as “interior designers Singapore”. When internet users search this or related terms, your website will be among the top results.
Another way to improve rankings via SEO using this strategy is by posting relevant and meaningful content. There are loads of poorly written content out there so search engines prefer quality stuff. Updating your content regularly also helps boost your site’s visibility. Make sure that your site loads faster. Internet users tend to spend more time on sites which are fast and responsive.
Whether it is a new service or project, give your site’s visitors some new content to explore. It takes some time to build a dynamic website, so just stick with it, and you will have a huge traffic before you know it.
As you run your interior design and architecture business, focus on building your brand. Want are people saying about your business? If the feedback about you services is mostly positive, you can be sure you’ll attract more customers.
After working with a client, ask them to review your business. Most clients will accept to do this, especially if you did an impressive job. They could do this on your website or on social media platforms.
Some potential clients usually look for testimonials on order to decide if they will work with a particular client. Ensure you do a thorough job for your clients so that you merit the positive reviews.
Refresh your Social Networks
63% of consumers in the country are active social media users. Leverage this fact by updating your social networks. Some of the social networking platform you can use to promote your services include Twitter, Facebook and Instagram. Share pictures of your latest completed projects and update your profile, headers, and backgrounds.
You can also post ads and general information related to the services. Make sure that you include links to the posts to direct the followers to your website. Social media gives the best results if you post regularly and consistently.
Always engage your followers by answering their question and offering value in your posts. Finally, upgrade your online presence and digital portfolio to make it easy for customers to get in touch with you.
Revive your visual content
Interior design often deals with visual concepts. You need to focus on creating videos and photos useful for emails and social media postings, as well as other platforms. You can recycle past visual content by requesting clients to take photos in their house. Some can take videos and post them on social media to showcase your work.
You have so many options, particularly with social media platforms, such as Pinterest, Instagram, and Snapchat. These platforms focus on visuals hence offer lots of opportunities for home professionals and interior designers.
Find Your ROI
Marketing your interior design business on social media should be an ongoing task. It’s even better when you’re able to track your Return on Investment (ROI) to develop an understanding of how much you’re getting from your marketing effort.
You have to begin by outlining your goals, and which you’ll be using to determine your ROI. Here’s a list of questions to ask:
If your goal is to increase brand awareness, then here are the two questions to ask yourself:
- Do you have a huge number of relevant followers?
- Is your content attracting enough engagement? Is it getting enough likes, shares, or comments?
If your Goal is to Establish Credibility and Trust, ask yourself the following two questions:
- Are you getting endorsed by influential people? Are they sharing your content or vouching for you with every chance they get?
- What’s your audience’s reaction to your influencers’ post? Are they comporting with their sentiments, or are they complaining about your business or the products and services you’re offering?
If your goal is to connect with your online audience, then here’s a list of questions you should be asking yourself:
- How well is your audience responding to your content?
- Does your content encourage engagement?
When your goal is to find new leads. Here are two key questions to ask yourself:
- Are your social shares directing people back to your site to take action?
- Are you making enough sales?
Remember to use bit.ly to create custom links for sharing your content around. It’s also a great tool if you want to establish the source of your content. Is it coming from social media?
You can also use social media to enhance your business, keep tabs on industry leaders, and to engage your audience. The first thing you want to do is to make sure you have goals and a well-thought-out plan to achieve those goals. Otherwise, you may find that you’re wasting a lot of time doing other things other than that one thing where your contribution and effort is needed the most – the actual interior design work.
Learn to Take Advantage of Influencers
There’s only so much to gain in terms of brand awareness by sharing your own work. However, with an influencer, you can increase the results you get tenfold.
First, when an influencer drums up support for your brand or products, they’re more than 70% more likely to be viewed as a credible source compared to your self-promotion attempts. Stats also show that influencer can drive ten times more conversions compared to your self-marketing attempts.
Singapore is brimming with influencers. You can start by finding one in your own niche, and a few general ones that you can get to vouch for your brand and products.
After you find them, the next thing you want to do is establish a relationship with them. Like, share, and comment on their posts. This should encourage them to do the same for you.
And most importantly, reach them with a business proposal where you pay them to promote your products.
Have a Purpose
One common mistake that marketers do all the time is to run their marketing campaigns without a purpose. There isn’t any calculated move in everything they do. Posts are generated haphazardly and published with no objective in mind.
Before you post anything, you might want to make sure it’s aligned with the end goal. What does it help you achieve in the meantime? It’s by figuring this out that you’ll be able to tell how well your marketing strategies are doing so you can know where to adjust or if you’re headed in the right direction.
There’s so much you can achieve with social media. You shouldn’t miss a purpose – not when you can use this dynamic social tool to:
- Increase brand awareness
- Nurture your followers and get them to trust you even more
- Connect with your audience
- Drive sales
- Find new leads
Be Authentic with Your Elevator Pitch
You’ll never know what a good network can do for you or your interior design firm until you get to make and grow one.
Networking can be likened to planting a seed. You put the seed in the ground and water it, attending to every single one of its needs in the hope that it will grow and bear you fruits. It’s the same thing with networking.
Once you’ve succeeded to network with anyone, all you can do is water the relation, and attend to all of its whims and strive to make sure that it grows into something meaningful.
The best way to grow seeds for networking purposes is through the elevator pitch you create. For those who don’t know, an elevator pitch is a short statement summarising everything you do most simply and directly.
By clearly defining your business, and sharing it with all the relevant stakeholders, what you’re doing is planting seeds without knowing which one among them will grow and get you acquaintances and connections. However, that means you have to really good at telling other people what you do.
The key is to be authentic and real when talking about your products and services. Use your creativity to come up with a great story to tell, but most importantly, figure out how you’re going to make the story relational. You want your audience to connect with your business, feel like it addresses their core concerns and you’ll be halfway to winning them over.
Get Your Prospects to opt-in
One of the most effective and low-cost online interaction channels for marketing your interior design business or firm is sending out regular newsletters to clients interested in your business.
With a regular newsletter, you get to keep your business on top of your customers’ mind just in case someone in your email list or circle decides that they need interior design services.
By regularly sending your prospects emails, you also increase your chances of getting contacted for business.
You can get your potential customers to leave you their emails either through in-person interactions or by getting them to sign up on your site. You can then run them through your email marketing campaign, where you’ll be sending them regular emails and telling them more about your business and the new offers that you have in store for them.
Houzz is an online community for interior designers, architects, and everything they’re connected with. It’s a great community for networking, marketing, and sourcing for partners that you can jump into business with.
It’s a good community to consider joining if you’re an aspiring interior designer and are looking for a launchpad for your career.
It’s through such a network that you get mentors, businesses, and grow your network.
Be Creative with Your Tagline
The secret to creating effective taglines is to focus on keeping them short and catchy. And since they’re short and easy to remember, taglines make it easy for people to remember your brand. Plus, they try to communicate your value and everything your business stands up for.
It’s rare to come across an interior design firm in Singapore with a tagline. You might want to capitalise on this opportunity to come up with a catchy tagline that will be helping you brand your business.
Don’t spin someone else’s tagline. If anything, the last thing you want is for your brand to be associated with some other brand. So, try to steer clear of cliched catchphrases such as “let’s help you spice up your living environment” or ‘how about we make your space liveable”
You can be more creative than any of this by digging through your strengths and capabilities. Your focus should be on what makes you different from the rest of Singapore interiors.
Here are a few examples of witty taglines you can come up with:
- Where design meets a need
- Shaping concepts
- Where Ideas are brought to life
- Bringing style to your homes and offices
- Dazzling designs
- Stylofy your space
- Nothing ordinary, just unique
- You need we create
- Reflect your passion
- Design meets future
Consider Setting up a Referral Program
You can encourage referrals by providing incentives. Give branded room accents to some of your clients to refresh their minds.
The referral program you run doesn’t have to be anything beyond the ordinary – just something simple, and you’re good to go.
Remember to keep track of everything you’re doing. This should help you keep your tasks simple and manageable.
Consider venturing into Commercial Projects as well
Whether you’re focusing on home or office interior, you shouldn’t fail to take advantage of commercial projects as well.
You need these projects to gain exposure and grow your network. The more you start working on commercial projects, the more you’ll be recognised by business owners and referred to other businesses, thus growing your network.
Find Out About What Make You Different
Make a list of all the things that you think make you a better web design solution than the rest of the designers you know. Not talking in the sense of being fabulous, but what you do that you think gives you an edge over the rest of the interiors in Singapore.
Also, try coming up with 15 reasons that you think make you a better fit of interior designer to a client. Why would a client want to hire you and not any other interior within your locality?
Be sure to apply these reasons into the marketing materials you come up with. Use them in your emails and the sales conversations that you have with potential clients.
Create a Word Bank
This is where you store all the crucial information concerning your business.
It can be as simple as creating a Google doc, where you’ll be writing all the things clients share with you. You can write about the problems they share with you, figure out their pain points, and so forth.
Regardless of which turn your business takes, you should never stop writing about this.
For instance, some clients just want to be told where they can put some things. It could be that they’re stuck and don’t know what they should be doing to move forward.
So, write it down as some fragments of your clients’ thoughts. You can collect more of these insights and figure out how to transform them into thoughts, newsletter subject lines, headlines, and long tail keywords for the posts you churn out.
It takes a whole lot more to market your interior design business than to schedule posts on social media.
You to be out there in the streets, with your ears open and listening to conversations. Clients will be more obliged to choose you because they can feel your presence. They should be able to choose you because you have invested your time in coming up with marketing strategies that speak to them directly.
It’s like you have a solution to every single one of their problems.
Find a way to Get Featured in a Local Magazine
Getting featured in a local magazine in Singapore will increase your chances of getting noticed by both clients and relevant stakeholders.
You can use this opportunity to sell the idea of interior design itself (not your business). Promote it as a functional way to make your living space more efficient and liveable. Remember to talk about how it’s able to achieve all this without breaking the bank.
Try to reach as many people as you possibly can, through your local newspaper with a message that paints a rosy picture of what interior design actually is and what it can do for their homes. This should attract more calls from people requesting your services.
However, before you achieve any of this, you have first to figure out how you’ll be getting local press coverage.
Remember to Partner with Similar Brands or those that Match Your Values
Make as many friends as you possibly can, and give everyone a reason to put out a positive word for your business. Also, try looking for similar brands with values that resonate with you, and try extending your arm for the possibility of partnering.
It doesn’t have to complicated. Just focus on creating a mutually beneficial setup. For instance, you can ask the business to promote your business to its customers and promise to the same on your end.
A good example is a supplier for one of the products you use. Should anyone reach out to them asking for a recommendation on an interior design firm they can work with, ask them to consider directing them your way.
Your goal is to reach a much wider audience within your target market. Also, if you’re big on eco-friendly designs, then you might want to partner with brands that sell furniture or room accents that are fashioned from recycled materials.
Optimise Your site for Local SEO
You can attract lots of users by targeting the local cities in Singapore. If you’re looking to target several cities, but your business is located in one central location, then a simple trick would be to create internal pages within your site, each of which will be featuring a FAQs page that strives to answer relevant questions about your business in different cities,
Google algorithms will be able to connect that webpage with an initiated search query made in that region.
All the techniques discussed in this post will help you market your interior design and architecture business in Singapore. Keep in mind that your competitors are probably employing some marketing strategies. Considering the large number of internet users, you need to focus more on online marketing. You may face challenges implementing digital media strategies such as SEM and SEO. This is where MediaOne comes in. It is the top agency in Singapore that helps businesses market to the digital world.