If you’re an interior designer looking to attract more clients and grow your business but haven’t started actively marketing – I’ve got you. In this post, I’m breaking down 10 marketing strategies for interior design firms. (In no particular order – except that I saved my favorite and the most successful strategy in my own business for last.)
Every single one is an effective strategy that WILL get you traction if you just take action one step at a time. Let’s dive in!
Interior Design Marketing Strategy #1: Content Marketing & Blogging
Pros: Builds authority and know-like-and-trust factor. Increases website traffic. Content lives on your own site forever.
Cons: Requires consistent creation of high-quality content. Time-consuming (average of 3-5 hours to create each post).
Creating content is an excellent way for you as an interior designer to showcase your talent and establish yourself as an expert. By creating valuable and engaging content, you can attract potential clients who are seeking inspiration and guidance for their design projects. Modern website platforms like WordPress (my personal fave) and Squarespace make creating blogs a breeze!
And contrary to social media content which disappears into a sea of forgotten posts, your website content can bring potential clients to your site FOREVER. Throw in some keywords that you know your clients might be searching for, and you’ll dramatically increase your website traffic.
Start by sharing design tips, project showcases, and industry trends to captivate your audience.
Interior Design Marketing Strategy #2: Social Media Marketing
Pros: Wide reach with almost 4 Billion users worldwide. Ability to engage with your potential clients.
Cons: Requires constantly creating new content. Time-consuming (average of 2-3 hours per day spent on socials). Content is controlled by a third-party platform.
To be honest, this marketing channel is a struggle for me personally because I want you to own and stay in control of all of your content. You’re beholden to the Mark Zuckerbergs of the world when you build your empire on these tools alone.
But that said, social media platforms like Instagram, Facebook, and Pinterest provide a visual playground for interior designers. You can utilize these powerful tools to showcase your portfolio, share behind-the-scenes glimpses of your interior design services, and connect with potential clients.
To succeed with this digital marketing strategy, you’ll need to develop a consistent posting schedule and interact with other design enthusiasts to expand your reach. Creating a solid interior design marketing plan and using a scheduling tool to manage your social media posts can make this feel a little lighter. My favorite is Plann (and yes, 👈 that’s my affiliate link).
Interior Design Marketing Strategy #3: Email Marketing
Pros: $42 return on investment for every $1 spent! Builds relationships with your potential, current, and past clients.
Cons: Requires building a quality email list. Need to create and send engaging emails.
Email marketing is one of my favorite ways to help interior designers grow their businesses without needing a huge marketing budget. This is all about building and nurturing client relationships.
Create a monthly newsletter that offers valuable content, design tips, exclusive discounts, and updates on your latest projects. My favorite tools for this are Flodesk (👈 affiliate link) for beginners because it is so easy. Or ConvertKit for more advanced automation.
These platforms make it easy to design and automate your email sequences. Send regular newsletters to your subscribers and use segmentation to personalize your messages based on their interests, preferences, and design style.
If you’re interested in getting started with this, shoot me an email or a DM on Instagram, and I’ll send you a free Flodesk training!
Interior Design Marketing Strategy #4: Digital Advertising
Pros: Highly targeted advertising. Immediate visibility.
Cons: Can be expensive. Requires expertise.
One proven way to promote your interior design business and reach a broader audience is by investing in digital advertising. Platforms like Google Ads and Facebook Ads allow you to target specific demographics, locations, and interests relevant to your ideal clients.
To make your paid advertising successful, you’ll need to create compelling ad copy and captivating visuals to grab attention. Monitor your campaigns closely, analyze the results, and make adjustments as needed to optimize your return on investment. Generally, you’ll want to engage the help of an interior design marketing agency to assist you with this.
Interior Design Marketing Strategy #5: Outbound Marketing & Lead Generation
Pros: Targeted approach and yield higher-quality leads. Leverage your personal and professional network. Often the fastest way to book your next project.
Cons: Prospecting and following up can be time-consuming. May face rejection. Can be intrusive if not done thoughtfully.
Sometimes, a proactive approach is necessary to bring clients to your business. Outbound marketing is when you identify a prospect and reach out directly to see if they might be interested in interior design services.
This marketing tactic can be as simple as sending an email to ask people you know personally if they know anyone who might be looking for help with their home or directly reaching out to a list of new home buyers.
I personally use this strategy all the time to fill my project schedule. It can be uncomfortable at first, but I’ve found that people in your own circle are often flattered that you asked for help and happy to introduce you to new potential clients.
Interior Design Marketing Strategy #6: Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
Pros: Drives organic traffic to your website.
Cons: Requires ongoing optimization and monitoring. Expertise needed to see results.
Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is the practice of optimizing your website to rank higher in search engine results. There are several technical pieces of the Google puzzle that you may want to find a good web designer to help you with (I know a gal! 😘). I won’t bore you with those technical details. Just know having a properly built, Google-friendly website does make a difference in making it easier for potential clients to find you.
The other important piece here is your Google My Business profile. This is how you show up in Google Maps and local search results, which is obviously really important when your future clients are searching for interior design services right in your hometown.
There are many things we can do to optimize your Google My Business page, but the most important is reviews. Which brings me to my next marketing tip…
Interior Design Marketing Strategy #7: Collecting Client Testimonials & Reviews
Pros: 93% of consumers say online reviews impact their purchasing decisions. Provides powerful social proof.
Cons: Requires gathering and maintaining up-to-date client feedback.
Are you asking your clients for feedback throughout your design process? Are you requesting a testimonial and/or review at the end of the project? If you’re not, you should be!
One of the best ways for designers to showcase their work is through the words of their happy clients. Leverage the power of client testimonials to build trust and credibility. Potential clients value the opinions of others, and genuine testimonials can make a huge impact on their decision to hire you or not.
Make sure you are taking full advantage of your testimonials by sprinkling them all over your digital presence. Use them in your website design, in your social media account profiles, and in your posts.
I especially love to encourage my clients to tell the story of their interior design projects in their digital portfolio by using case studies. Talk about the transformation you created, highlight the problems you solved, and help your potential clients get a feel for what is possible for them when they hire YOU.
If you’re asking for and collecting Google Reviews – amazing! This has a big positive impact on your ability to rank higher in local search results when your future clients are actively searching for interior design in their area!
Interior Design Marketing Strategy #8: Referral Programs
Pros: Leverages word-of-mouth marketing. Incentivizes existing clients to refer new clients.
Cons: Requires active promotion and tracking of referrals. May take time to see results.
Word-of-mouth referrals are one of the most powerful marketing tools for interior designers. When you provide exceptional service and your design work creates the outcome your clients are hoping for, you can encourage your clients to share their positive experiences and recommend your services to family, friends, and colleagues.
Consider creating a referral program that offers discounts on future projects or exclusive perks. This doesn’t have to be fancy! Just ask!
I love to help my clients develop an offboarding process where an email is sent after the project is complete to ask for reviews and referrals. This can be as simple as including this paragraph –
“I want to let you know about my referral program! I offer [whatever the incentive is] as a thank you when your friends and family book a project with me. Working with you was a dream, and I would love to find more clients just like you! Do you know anyone who might need some design help?”
This is a wonderful way to get more of the type of client you want to work with!
Interior Design Marketing Strategy #9: Local Advertising
Pros: Highly targeted. Visible, measurable results.
Cons: Costly. Limited reach compared to digital channels. Difficult to measure return on investment.
Digital marketing is all the rage, but we shouldn’t underestimate the power of local advertising to connect you with potential clients right in your own town. You might consider placing ads in local newspapers, magazines, or TV channels to raise awareness of your interior design services.
If you choose to pursue this strategy for your interior design firm, make sure your marketing materials incorporate compelling visuals to grab attention. This traditional approach to marketing allows you to target a local audience who may not be actively searching online for interior design services.
Just know that you may need a handsome budget to see marketing success with this strategy.
Interior Design Marketing Strategy #10: Networking & Collaborations
Pros: Builds relationships with industry professionals. Expands reach through strategic partnerships.
Cons: Requires time and effort to attend events and nurture connections.
Many designers generate leads by forming partnerships with other complementary businesses like real estate agents, architects, builders, and contractors. You can find these valuable relationships by becoming an active member of your local business network. This will help you to establish yourself as the go-to interior designer in your area and create opportunities to collaborate on design projects with other professionals in the design community.
Similar to outbound marketing, the fortune is in the follow-up here. Take the time to send a note or an email when you meet someone new in your industry. Check-in from time to time to ask if there’s anything you can do to help.
Shaking hands and exchanging business cards at an industry event is not enough to see the benefit of this approach. You must take the time to actively invest in the relationship to see this work for your business.
For my own business, no marketing tool can compare to the value of real, genuine human connection and a sincere desire to help others. Building relationships is my favorite “marketing platform” of all.
A few final interior design marketing tips…
If you’re new to marketing, a list of ten strategies may feel totally overwhelming. You do not (SHOULD NOT) try to implement them all. Here are three things I want you to keep in mind in your marketing plan.
- Choose ONE strategy to work on consistently: Dedicate yourself to taking action on a single marketing strategy every week.
Choose what feels most aligned with YOU. What comes naturally? What sounds fun? Consistency is the key to achieving success, and you will be 100X more consistent when you’re doing something you enjoy.
- Embrace the power of the niche: Ever heard that saying, “If you’re speaking to everyone, you’re speaking to no one?”
Tailoring your marketing messages to appeal to the needs of a specific audience can help you really stand out as the go-to designer for that group of potential clients. (This doesn’t mean you can’t do other design work. You’re just not going to talk about it in your marketing.)
Maybe it’s sustainable design, luxury homes, commercial spaces, or vacation rentals – focusing on a specific area allows you to differentiate yourself as the expert.
- Track and analyze your marketing efforts: Utilize tools like Google Analytics, social media insights, and CRM (Client Relationship Management) systems to track what is working in your marketing.
Just make sure you’re asking clients how they found you! This data will help you identify what’s working and what needs improvement, allowing you to refine your marketing plan and maximize your return on investment.
Remember, effective marketing takes time and effort, but the results are so worth it. Pick one strategy to try this week! And if you need some guidance, set up an intro call with me! I’d love to help you create a plan for your marketing needs!