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A Well-Designed Business™ | Interior Design | Designers | Business |Interior Design Success

In today's world being a talented interior designer isn't enough to ensure that you have a profitable and successful interior design business. Design school doesn't always teach you the critical business skills to be sure your interior design business be everything you imagined it would be! A Well Designed Business is here to fill in the gaps and give you real live business skills from some of the top interior designers. Your host, LuAnn Nigara shares her 35 years of success in the interior design industry, and she finds the most successful guests to share their interior design business best practices.
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A Well-Designed Business™ | Interior Design | Designers | Business |Interior Design Success
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Sep 20, 2017

What is your vision for your design business? How do you manage to balance work and life? Are you managing it, or has the business taken over your life? When you’re in the middle of the day-to-day of running a business, it can be easy to forget why you started in the first place. Whether it is creative freedom, income to support your family, or a dream that has finally taken flight, it is so important to keep the values you hold dear close at hand. This podcast is all about giving you tools that you can use to launch your design business. Today, I am thrilled to bring to you Kim Worswick, who has been in business for just five short months and is already operating close to her values. What’s her secret? This podcast!

Kimberley Kay Interiors is Kim’s solo firm and boy has it taken off! Kim has a strong Instagram presence, where she films these great short videos that are zany, fun and full of personality and great design. Kim’s business is based on referrals so that she can ensure that she is only taking the right amount of projects at a time. Work-Life Balance is so important to Kim, so she has set up her business around that value. Today, we will share how Kim launched her business, sticks to her values, and overcomes mistakes and challenges as her business has grown. It is encouraging to hear how this podcast has changed Kim’s life, and I would love to hear from you too! Give this episode a listen, and then reach out to me to let me know the ways our guests have transformed your design business.

 

More from this episode:

  • Kim talks about her crazy, zany Instagram videos.
  • Take a little inspiration from Kim who used tools from the podcast to launch her business.
  • Kim operates off of her 5 Key Values.
  • Work-Life Balance is the basis for Kim’s business model.
  • Using Interior Design as an act of community service.
  • Growing a business only to the point where it fits within your lifestyle.
  • Working underneath a lead designer was beneficial, but creatively stifling.
  • Why a bookkeeper should be your first hire.
  • Learning from mistakes and celebrating triumphs.
  • Gaining customer loyalty by doing whatever it takes to get the design right.

Links:

www.kimberleykayinteriors.com
 
https://www.instagram.com/kimberleykayinteriors/
 
https://www.facebook.com/kimberleykayinteriors/
Sep 18, 2017

We are back together for another installment of Design Biz Live, in spite of all the obstacles and scheduling conflicts we’ve had to overcome to make it happen! I’m back with my trusted experts, Judith Neary of Roadside Attraction Design Studio, and Corey Klassen of Corey Klassen Interiors. One of our goals is to cover all aspects of the flat fee vs. hourly rate question that designers face. What we have discovered is that there is a more basic issue at stake that we must turn our attention to first. The issue is that YOU, as a designer, need to know what you are and are not most efficient at in your business. In other words, you need to break down the work of a designer into your personal strengths and weaknesses. Corey and Judith have developed a self-assessment for principals to use in evaluating all the different things we do for our clients. As industry leaders, Judith and Corey have spent a lot of time speaking in front of their peers, and they have developed this tool with the purpose of evaluating your skills as they relate to your design firm. Let’s jump into this conversation!

Show highlights:

  • Gear your services toward your skill set according to the self-assessment
  • How Judith and Corey got the idea for developing this helpful tool
  • The three phases of the assessment: concept, execution, and administration
  • Debunking the “ideal client” myth
  • Why you need to get clear on what you do really well
  • A basic fundamental that a designer must figure out via the self-assessment:
    • What am I most efficient at?
    • How can I fill in the gaps that I’m not best at?
  • Look for opportunities to improve your skill set
  • Your business evolves and grows as a living, breathing entity
  • The relationship between your strengths and weaknesses and the question of flat fee vs. hourly rates
  • For the client, services needed in each of the three phases and their associated fees
  • Segmenting your services in each distinct phase
  • How the designer controls “the process”
  • Setting the project and the team up for success
  • How designers get into trouble when they tackle things they aren’t good at
  • How Corey graphed his and his employees’ strengths of skill and how the result measured up to their perceptions
  • When you as the business owner-need to change the outcome
  • How to have the difficult conversations with employees
  • “Am I interested in rehabilitating this employee or do I want them to leave my firm?”
  • The “show-tell-do” and feedback process
  • Reach out to get an honest evaluation of your performance as a designer
  • How to ask questions to former clients for feedback about your fee structure

Links:

Visit www.windowworks-nj.com/designbiz2 to download the self-assessment!

Sep 15, 2017

Today we are in for an incredible treat. John Rhulin is the founder of the Ruhlin Group, a powerhouse company that helps high-end firms reach their audience, maintain customers, and gain referrals through Gift-Giving. John has roots as a salesman, but by seeking opportunity, reaching for excellence, and learning the huge value of gratitude, John has created a Group with high-end clients such as the Chicago Cubs and Electrolux. 

With such huge clients, it might seem like a stretch to think that John has wisdom for you and your design business. Well, that simply isn’t true! The elegant principles of good gift-giving are universal, and they will help you win referrals and maintain clients. The secret is in the gift itself: personal, unexpected, and filled with authenticity. Today, you will learn what gifts to give, when to give, and how to keep your clients close at hand. It’s time to stretch those generosity muscles and make someone’s day. Winning clients and growing your business is really as easy as that!

Show highlights:

  • John shares his first selling experiences with Cutco that shaped his business acumen.
  • Building a company around gratitude.
  • Hear John’s incredible story about the Brooks Brothers.
  • John has unparalleled employee relationships to change the way they do service.
  • John’s advice to small business owners who are trying to gift their customers well.
  • The best gift John has ever received.
  • Re-defining the way that we treat our customers.
  • Make referrals happen by taking care of the “inner circle.”

 Links:

Follow the link for John’s gift to our listeners! 10 Gifts to Avoid Giving.  

http://giftologybook.com/design/

Pick up your copy of Giftology by John Ruhlin

http://ruhlingroup.com/

Sep 13, 2017

Today, we have Cynthia Spence on show with us. She is the Principal of Cynthia Spence Design, which is a Full-Service Interior Design firm,  located in the San Francisco Bay Area and it caters to both Residential and Commercial clients. Cynthia feels that the world has become increasingly more noisy and so it's really important to her to create environments that are both soothing and restorative for her clients. Today, she spends some time talking about how her previous career, in Marketing and Management positions in prominent Entertainment and High Tech companies, informs her Interior Design career. Listen in to find out more.

Although it's not the typical route to Interior Design, Cynthia's experience in Relationship Marketing, Creative Services, and Project Management has had a role to play in shaping her business and has also contributed largely towards its success. You will benefit from this experience too, as she really goes into a lot of detail about the skills and services that you need to have, in order to create a truly successful firm. Listen in now, to find out what Cynthia has to share with you.

Show highlights:

  • How Cynthia's past career created a framework and positioned her perfectly for an Interior Design business.
  • Why the skill of listening is really so important, in the Interior Design business.
  • Cynthia explains her approach to her clients because every client is really uniquely different.
  • Some of the nuts and bolts of how Cynthia's management experience informed her, when she started out with her own business, twelve years ago.
  • Why you really need to take great care of your vendors- and even possibly defend them at times.
  • Creating the right balance between your strengths and weaknesses.
  • The real value in making mistakes.
  • The importance of ethical behavior, honour, and integrity, for your business.
  • Cynthia explains how her business is set up and what it looks like.
  • How to let your client know that you have their project under control. (Even if it doesn't seem that way for you at the time!)
  • Some advice about home automation, for new Designers.
  • Cynthia talks about her super powers.
  • What made Cynthia transition her career to Interior Design.
  • The better you are at what you do, the more in demand your services will be.
  • Why it takes a lot of resilience, to start your own business.
  • Learning to stand in your client's shoes, to really understand them.
  • Cynthia's goals for the next few years.
  • Cynthia discusses the creative aspects of working as an Interior Designer.
  • Some advice for people who are trying to work out how to market their firm.
  • The type of aesthetic that Cynthia prefers.
  • Spinning your own take on a particular style.
  • Creating your own brand.

If you have used any Kravet product recently, take a picture of it, post it to social media, use the hashtag #instakravet and tag Kravet, as they will repost some of them.

Links:

Her social media:
https://twitter.com/CynthiaSpenceSF
#itsallabouttheedit
https://www.instagram.com/cynthiaspencedesign/
Sep 11, 2017

My guest today is Maria V. Kutruff, principal of Viola Interior Design, which is located in the Philadelphia area. Over the last 14 years, Maria’s work has ranged from designing custom furniture to designing office spaces to the renovation of entire residences. She is active in the American Society of Interior Designers, having served on its board and received several awards. She received her master’s degree in Interior Architecture and Design from Drexel University, where she currently teaches design at the Antoinette Westphal College of Media Arts and Design. Our focus today is around what it takes to be an adjunct professor, including the pros, the cons, and the nitty gritty. Join us!

What you’ll hear in this episode:

  • Why the curriculum is set up to help design students explore their creativity
  • Our goal in teaching design: to learn about design first and then budget issues
  • Advice to all design students: Take a business class not related to design
  • Why Maria chooses to be an adjunct professor
  • Stay open to new ideas and stay relevant!
  • New things outside your comfort zone
  • The endless possibilities in networking and connection
  • Requirements to be an adjunct professor and the process in acquiring this position
  • How to reach out to colleagues and cultivate a relationship with a university
  • How to prepare your curriculum and how to teach it
  • The time commitment required as an adjunct each week
  • When mature decisions have to be made about balancing a design business and teaching
  • Term-by-term flexibility as an adjunct
  • Build up your credibility as a new adjunct
  • The possibility that exists in having a full-fledged design career along with a corollary career as an adjunct
  • Get to know people and bring value to them

Resources:

Drexel University Interior Design Program:
http://drexel.edu/westphal/academics/undergraduate/INTR/
 
Maria's website:
http://violainteriordesign.com
 
Email Maria: maria@violainteriordesign.com
Sep 8, 2017

The guest for today's Power Talk Friday is Jody Padar. She's a CPA and she also has a podcast called 'Let's Get Radical', so she goes by the name 'The Radical CPA'. Jody is the CEO and the Principal of New Vision CPA Group, which is a Public Accounting firm based in the Chicago area. Jody joined her father's firm more than ten years ago and today, we talk with her about what happened when she first joined, what it was like and what transpired from that. Listen in to find out more about Jody's radical approach to accounting and how it can really be of benefit to you, in your business.

 

LuAnn knows that at times, we all have to hear the same thing a number times before the light bulb actually goes on in our heads. Jody, as The Radical CPA, has a very different way of going about helping business owners and small businesses to navigate their way around the accounting side of their businesses and stay on track. It's a far cry from the old and staid model of accounting and this is why LuAnn has invited her on the show today, to put the bug in your ear again and to remind you that it really is time to grow up and do things right in your business. So, listen in now, for some great insights from Jody, about how accounting technology can really work for you, in your business.

 

 

Show highlights:

 

  • Jody talks about what it was like when she joined her father's firm and what happened there, once she joined. 
  • The realization that Jody had about her business ten years ago, as a result of working with all the new technology and software that became available to her through the internet.
  • How Jody banded together with other young CPA's seven years ago and they became coined as a movement of doing things in a different way- or Radical CPA's.
  • The value and insight that a CPA should be bringing to a business, should be in in the forward-looking and the cash flow projections and helping to build the business.
  • In the past, CPA's were so busy doing things, that they didn't have the time to step back and work in an advisory capacity. Now however, they can work in that capacity, because the technology is doing all the work that they used to have to do.
  • What you, as small business owners or Interior Designers, need to know, in order to ask an Accountant or CPA the right questions. 
  • If you're still living in a paper world, the first thing is that you have to automate, because the power is in the data.
  • Working with Cloud Based Accounting. You can put the information in and the technology (the software program) does 85% of the work.
  • Jody suggests using Quick Books Online, or Zero. These will allow both you and your Accountant to log in to your data.
  • Working with your Accountant, in order to realise your goals- It's important to think about where you want to go, in your business, because the way that your Accountant is going to work with you, will be based on your values.
  • Why Jody thinks that CPA's stand in the best position, as Business Coaches.
  • Accounting is the language of business, so you need to be open to the advice of your Accountant, to face the facts and grow your business.
  • It's very important to find the right Accountant- the one that you can really relate to.
  • New school Accountants are building advisory into their practices.
  • It's best to work with an Accountant who is working in a timely manner, in real time.
  • You want to be talking to your Accountant four times a year, at minimum.
  • Most Radical CPA's work in a fixed fee model, charging a subscription based monthly fee. This is to encourage communication.
  • Your choice of entity is your number one tax saving factor. 
  • Sales tax is a huge issue, so you, as Designers really need to talk to a professional about this. 
  • Avalara.com is a great place to go to check out the Sales Tax Laws.
  • You need to keep trying until you find the Accountant who is exactly the right fit for you and your business.

 

Links:

 

Jody's website: www.newvisioncpagroup.com 

 

You can listen to Jody's podcast, Let's Get Radical, on iTunes or Stitcher.

 

Jody on Twitter: @jodypadarcpa 

 

Sep 6, 2017

Today we have Kamila Gornia, a Digital Marketing Strategist, on the show and she's here to help demystify Facebook Ads for us. LuAnn is particularly interested in this topic, because she herself, doesn't have a very good grasp on it. This means that she's tended to put the brakes on with the use of social media in her business, not really knowing if it would be effective enough to be worth spending money on. However, with all the reading and listening that she's been doing around this topic recently, she feels that the time has now come to get to understand it. LuAnn tends to make the assumption that if she's struggling to understand something, then others out there will surely be too, so listen in today, as Kamila helps you to understand how Facebook Ads really work.

When Kamila was only twelve years old and still living in a small town in Poland, she got her first computer. This was very exciting for her, so she dove right in and got a little nerdy. She's the kind of person who, if she sees something that seems exciting to do, she just does it! So she learned HTML and created her first website around Japanese Manga and Anime comic books (not very popular in Poland), and started marketing– without even realizing that that was what she was doing! Her approach to it was very organic and the response that she got via the chat room culture of the time was great, so it actually took off. She found it pretty easy to bring on volunteers to help her to make this available to other people, because everyone was so excited about being part of this really cool venture, even though there was no money being made. She actually managed to get to forty thousand views, without any social media or pay traffic, in less than five months! Listen in now, to find out from Kamila how you can really get Facebook Ads to work for you and your Interior Design Business.

Show highlights:

  • Kamila explains about the two different camps of people when it comes to paid advertising on Facebook.
  • Kamila explains the first things you need to know and have in place, before spending any money or putting your toe into the water of the ads and the paid portion of Facebook.
  • Crafting an offer (or funnel) that you can send the Facebook Ads traffic to.
  • You need to have a very specific and focused way of getting the traffic to your website, so Kamila gives you some really great options for this.
  • Understand that with your email list, you are actually building an asset.
  • Kamila gives some ideas for Interior Designers to create and grow a following.
  • Why Kamila really likes creating quizzes.
  • A mistake that many people tend to do, with making things DIY.
  • Using E-books, Training Programs, Questionaires or Schedule a Call, to create a Call to Action to drive traffic to your website.
  • The Design Industry is very visual, which makes the process a lot easier.
  • Designing your Call to Action, based on your goals.
  • How to format your Call to Action, through using Facebook Ads.
  • Understanding who you're targeting and also what people will be seeing, with your Facebook Ads.
  • What a Carousel Ad
  • The images are the most important thing with Facbook Ads, then after that comes the headline and ad copy.
  • Get straight to the point, with the copy in your ad.
  • Working with Conversion Objective Ads, using pixels. (You can download a Facebook Pixel plug in.)
  • How to add a snippet of code on your Thank You Page, to turn a conversation into a lead. This can be a more profitable way to do things.
  • Understanding who your ads are going to be shown in front of- either a warm audience or a cold one.
  • Creating a warm audience on your website, through using pixels with your Facebook advertising.
  • What it would cost you, to create  Facebook Ads. The prices really vary a lot.
  • How much to budget for, if you're new to Facebook Advertising.

Resources:

Kamila's website: www.kamilasocial.com

Her podcast:
The Kamila Gornia Show: Entrepreneurship | Marketing | Leadership with Heart Behind Hustle
Sep 4, 2017

My guest for today’s amazing show is Candy Scott, the Principal of MOOD Design + Build, based in Chicago. She gives practical advice on launching, growing, and sustaining an interior design business. Candy has 15 years’ experience in both commercial and residential design. She graduated from Meredith College in Raleigh, NC, with a BS in Interior Design. You’ll hear her describe how her early experience working with a large developer and  with large corporate clients, outfitting high-rise condominiums, lobbies, model homes, and showrooms all contributed to some of the principles and lessons she brings to her own business. She founded MOOD Design + Build in 2014, and continues to work with residential clients and small business owners with their homes, offices, and small-scale commercial interiors.

Show highlights:

  • Candy’s background and experience after design school
  • Benefits to working at a furniture store, learning customer service and different segments of the business
  • Making mistakes in the early years: “falling down and getting back up again”
  • The consciousness it takes to “get out of the drama”
  • Finding the place of relating to clients, vendors, and contractors with a sense of mutuality
  • Meeting clients where they are: hearing their frustrations and fear
  • The range of services offered by MOOD Design + Build
  • How the design phase and the build phase differ
  • Breaking down a project into smaller increments and tracking the data
  • How to be the go-to for referrals for the business that larger firms don’t want
  • Why you must attend networking events
  • Weekly sales activity: why you can’t let this part of your business go
  • Developing relationships with realtors
  • Candy’s blog post with 7 Initial Questions for Developing a Beautiful Space and 5 Steps to Making a Beautiful Space (check out her website!)

Resources:

Candy’s website and blog:

www.modddesignbuild.com

Her Twitter:
https://twitter.com/CandyScott_

Sep 1, 2017

Great news! We have Fred Berns back on the show today, for Power Talk Friday! Fred has been with LuAnn in episodes #22, #48, #96 and #174, so they really go way, way back! If you're new to this show, you have a really great treat in store, because Fred is a Coach, specializing in the Interior Design Industry. He has been coaching and writing promotional copy for Interior Designers for more than thirty years and he is the only Interior Design Business Coach and Speaker who creates promotional materials and personal bio's for Design Professionals, right across the world. Listen in to find out more.

LuAnn just adores Fred, who has really brought so much value to the Design Industry! He creates online profiles, websites, social media copy, blogs, and marketing forums.  Fred believes that the Fall, which he calls The Prime Time For Promotion For Designers, to be the very best time of year for Design Professionals to market themselves. Today, Fred and LuAnn discuss ways that you can sell yourself to the same customers and clients that you have, and also to some new ones, so listen in now, as we find out from Fred why he believes this to be the very best time for you to be promoting your business.

Show highlights:

  • Fred explains why he sees the Fall as the time for gold.
  • Fred explains his concept of a September Letter and what should go into it.
  • The main motive behind the September Letter is to re-introduce yourself to the market place and to remind them about the fabulous services that you have to offer, with your new, killer bio.
  • All the different people that you could send a September Letter to.
  • What Fred sees as the number one obstacle for Design Professionals around the world.
  • Some great ideas for Fall Specials.
  • Fred's thoughts on giving special offers, without having to lower your fees.
  • Snail mail sometimes has more impact than emails.
  • Fred goes over his Champions Checklist.
  • LuAnn gives some great ideas for Marketing yourself in the Fall and building your networking muscle.
  • Fred reminds you that you miss a hundred percent of the shots you didn't take.
  • What your blog posts need to be addressing, right now.
  • Some ideas for a Fall Fix Up Session.
  • More good reasons for marketing yourself in the Fall.
  • Both Fred and LuAnn are going to be at America's Mart, in Atlanta, in the last week of September.
  • If you're looking for some help with your September Letter, or with your Fall Strategy, go to biobriefing.com for a thirty-minute session with Fred.

Links:

His website:
InteriorDesignBusiness.net
Fred's Email:Fred@FredBerns.com
Aug 31, 2017

You're probably wondering what LuAnn's doing here on a Thursday, right? Well, this is a news flash that needed it's own show and its own announcement,  so here it is: LuAnn, together with Nancy Ganzekaufer, the first person on the show to introduce the concept of niching in Interior Design (episode #9), is launching a ten week, Live Coaching Session and it's called Money, Mindset And  Sales. LuAnn really wants to make sure that you've heard about it and that you have the chance to be in on this program, so listen in now- it's going to be killer!

Nancy and LuAnn hatched this idea about a week and a half ago after they had a conversation about how they both love talking to people and teaching them about sales and they've been discussing this idea, almost constantly, since then. They also really love to see the breakthrough when someone has a shift in mindset about something, so they made a snap decision to do a Coaching Session together. No grass grows under their feet, so listen in to find out how to really kick it out and bring it home in this year of 2017.

Show highlights:

  • Nancy was back on the show for episode #159 and there she gave a list of what you need to do, to get really confident and clear on what you offer to your Interior design clients.
  • LuAnn explains how the program, which is starting on the 13th of September, is going to work.
  • Every session will be recorded and made available to you in your inbox, on that day, in case the time zone doesn't work for you.
  • You will also have access to LuAnn and Nancy through a Facebook Group, for your questions.
  • There will be a limited number of people accepted for this program.
  • The two free coaching sessions that you will get with this program.
  • Together, LuAnn and Nancy have fifty years of experience in high ticket sales.
  • LuAnn explains what her goals are, for this program.
  • LuAnn discusses two more goodies that you will get, with this program.
  • LuAnn talks about her book, The Making Of A Well Designed Business.
  • LuAnn discusses Nancy's fifteen module course, called Nail Your Sales Training.
  • LuAnn gives you the cost of their Money, Mindset, And Sales coaching session.
  • Go to windowworks-nj.com/breakthrough for all the information and to see a video of LuAnn and Nancy describing the course.
  • This course can really help you to kill it in the last quarter of 2017!

Links:

windowworks-nj.com/breakthrough

Aug 30, 2017

Today is the third show in the series which has been sponsored by Certified Cruelty Free Design, which is the heart project and brainchild of Deborah Rosenberg, of DiMare Design in Miami, Florida. If this is the first time that you're listening to this show, you can go back and listen to #82, where we met Deborah Rosenberg, to find out more about her and how she runs her business.

Then, in episode #117, she explains in detail about the CEU Course that she created, in Certified Cruelty Free Design. Then there is the sponsored show, with this being the third show of that series. In episode #212, Deborah spoke about her Course and about why it's so important for you to consider, as a Designer. In episode #218, Deborah explained the resources and marketing of Certified Cruelty Free Design. Go back and listen in, because all these shows are really well worth listening to.

Today, we get to meet Rachelle DiCecco, an Interior Design Student in Australia. Rachelle is in her final semester and when she heard about Certified Cruelty Free Design, she decided to take the course. On the show today, Rachelle shares her impressions of the course and her opinions about its content and also, how she expects to make use of it in her career as an Interior Designer. Listen in now, to find out more about the ins and outs of Deborah's Certified Cruelty Free Design Course.

Show highlights:

  • Rachelle explains what compelled her to take the course. She found no other course like it when doing her research.
  • Rachelle explains, in practical terms, how one goes about taking the course, the time it takes and what it consists of. The course is extremely flexible and you can jump in and out of it whenever you want to, so it's very easy to work with.
  • Rochelle talks about the content of the course. There was way more content there than she expected to find.
  • Rochelle explains about the fantastic support system which has been set up for everyone taking the course, all around the world.
  • Rochelle found that she was completely satisfied with the whole course.
  • Rachelle talks about the impact that the course has had on her and what she's come to realize, since taking it.
  • The kind of responsibility that follows the Cruelty Free awareness.
  • How Rachelle intends to incorporate what she's learned in the course, into her future career.
  • The great response from Rachelle's lecturers, towards her taking the course.
  • How Rachelle intends to deal with clients who want to use leather or other non-sustainable products.
  • Becoming part of this worldwide socially conscious, ethical network was a really huge thing for Rachelle. It's way bigger than she previously thought.
  • Rachelle will never look furniture in quite the same way again.
  • The vast amount of ethical alternatives that Rachelle intends to bring to the attention of her future clients.

Links:

Rachelle's Website:
Certified Cruelty Free
 
Her Twiter:
Cert Cruelty-Free

Dimare Design

Aug 28, 2017

The guest on today's show is Allison Fannin, the Texan Principal of Two Thirty-Five Designs. LuAnn invited her on the show for a very specific reason- and then, while researching her, she discovered that Allison actually had twenty-seven thousand followers on Pinterest! Allison graciously agreed to make the focus of today's discussion about the figuring out of the whole Pinterest thing. So, listen in, as LuAnn and Allison pick this topic apart. 

In episode #209, LuAnn interviewed Leslie Carothers and Sam Henderson, of the Savour Partnership. During that interview, Leslie pointed out that if you're not using Pinterest to drive traffic to your website, you're actually missing the boat. LuAnn didn't even know how to do that, so she took some steps to find out. Then, shortly afterward, she received a message from Darla Powell, asking if she was going to get a Pinterest expert on the show. LuAnn decided that if she and Darla were both wanting to find out about it, most likely you were too.  So listen in now, to find out more about how to use Pinterest and also Instagram and Facebook, to drive traffic to your website.

Show highlights:

  • LuAnn explains how she and Allison came to be connected, through a crazy picture and caption on Magazine Living, on Instagram.
  • Allison's huge number of followers on Pinterest and Instagram, where she herself, only follows a fraction of that number of people.
  • Allison talks about how Pinterest, which has really become a massive search engine, has evolved, over the years.
  • Allison explains how Pinterest works and how you can use it best, to get more traffic.
  • Group Boards on Pinterest.
  • Allison explains why she has so many more followers on Pinterest than the number of people that she follows, herself.
  • The amount of time that Allison actually spends on Pinterest.
  • Allison explains how Pinterest works, as a technical driver of traffic to your website.
  • Using Rich Pins and Keywords for SEO, when using Pinterest.
  • Why it's a good idea to have a Business Account on Pinterest.
  • How Rich Pins work in conjunction with your website.
  • Why you should put your blog name in the title of your pictures.
  • Pinterest has become a lot like Instagram- it's really about the pretty stuff.
  • The method of using re-pins effectively, for a constant flow, on Pinterest.
  • Titling your pictures properly on Pinterest, for optimum SEO.
  • You can follow selectively, on Pinterest.
  • Using basic words to name your Boards on Pinterest.
  • There are several services that you can use, (like Boardbooster) to schedule out your pins on Pinterest.
  • You can go back to old posts and edit them- don't forget to re-pin when you do!
  • Coming up with the right titles for Pinterest posts.
  • Using subtitles on Pinterest.
  • How Allison's following on Pinterest and Instagram has translated into money for her.           

Links:

Allison's website: www.twothirtyfivedesigns.com

Allison on Facebook and Instagram:https://www.instagram.com/magazineliving/

Aug 25, 2017

On today's episode of Power Talk Friday, LuAnn has an absolutely ridiculous treat for you!  She has Lee Cockerell with her, who's name may or may not be familiar to you... He has spent his career leading operations all over the world, for Hilton Hotels, Mariott Hotels, and Walt Disney Company.

He spent more than twenty years with the Walt Disney Company, where he ultimately became Executive Vice President of Walt Disney World Operations. Since then, he has gone on to form his own company,  where he shares what he has learned and he makes available his breakthrough methods for becoming a better manager and a great leader. LuAnn is really busting at the seams because this is truly her kind of topic!  Lee is also has a podcast called Creating Disney Magic, where he shares his Disney experiences in an effort to help people like you become better leaders and managers. 

(Episode no.1 of that podcast is a really interesting one, where Lee literally goes through his entire career.)  At Disney, they created an environment where every employee matters and they know they matter. In addition to that, he has written four books, called Creating  Magic- Ten Common Sense Leadership Strategies From A Life At Disney,  The Customer Rules-Thirty Nine Essential Rules For Delivering Sensational Customer Service, Time Management Magic- How To Get More Done Every Day And More From  Surviving To Thriving  and his latest book, Creating Career Magic- How To Stay On Track And Create A Stellar Career. There are three things that Lee and his team do better than everybody else, which really makes all the difference, they hire better, they train better and they treat them (their employees) better. That is the key that either creates success for most organizations or not, according to Lee. Listen in now, as LuAnn (who is literally beyond herself right now) talks to Lee about his thoughts and processes, on the show today.

There are three things that Lee and his team do better than everybody else, which really makes all the difference, they hire better, they train better and they treat them (their employees) better. That is the key that either creates success for most organizations or not, according to Lee. Listen in now, as LuAnn (who is literally beyond herself right now) talks to Lee about his thoughts and processes, on the show today.

Show highlights:

  • Lee talks about his philosophy around ways to really set your organization apart, in the eyes of your customers and your employees. It's really important to be very clear about your level of expectations.
  • According to Lee, there are three things that you have to have, to be successful- You have to have a skill, you have to have the right positive attitude and you have to have passion.
  • Hire slow and fire fast.
  • Disney has a hundred and thirty questions that potential employees have to answer, before even being granted an interview. Lee relates some of these to a Designer, or a small firm, considering making their first hire. (His book, The Customer Rules, has a chapter on how to hire the right people.) In Lee's opinion, most people don't know how to conduct a proper interview.
  • Lee recommends reading Don't Hire Anyone Without Me, by Carol Quinn, to help you to hire the right people.
  • Obstacles are the name of the game. The way people have handled obstacles in the past will be a good indicator of how they deal with them in the future.
  • Lee talks about training people the Disney way. Everything matters! A bad employee will kill your business.
  • The key to great training is remembering that the customer is more important than anything else! Everyone needs to understand where they fit in and how they matter.
  • All Disney contractors go through the same training as their employees.
  • Lee explains his concept of firing fast. Be careful who you hire!
  • When you're clear with people, you get better performance.
  • People only change for two reasons- education, or crisis.
  • It's important for your employees to understand that when you pull them up about something, you're only coming to them to help them to be better.
  • Role modeling is very important for employees (and children!)
  • Lee's advice for great time management. Discipline and a good system for planning are really most important here. Fix yesterday, every day, before it gets out of control because regrets are really tough to handle. (This is reflection.)
  • Excellence is a state of mind.
  • Provide Free Fuel for your employees every day: Appreciation, Recognition, and Encouragement. You can hand these three out all day, to increase your employee's levels of commitment.
  • Fix one thing you've been putting off for years-next week!
  • Do things on purpose. Life will get a whole lot better, real quick!
  • People really notice a good attitude and discipline.

Link: 

Lee's website: www.leecockerell.com

His podcast: Creating Disney Magic
https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/creating-disney-magic-lessons-in-leadership-management/id954054965?mt=2
Aug 23, 2017

Today we have the second show in our Facebook Coaching series. If you missed the first show, it was episode #215, where LuAnn spoke with Kate O'Hara, the Marketing and Business Development Director at Martha O'Hara Interiors. There she spoke about how to build your following on your Facebook Business Page. Martha O'Hara Interiors has over two hundred thousand followers, so she really has some pretty good advice for you there, so be sure to go and check that show out.

Today's show is with Sherri-Lee Woycik, a Facebook Marketing and Ads expert and she's also the founder of Social Media Minder. She really loves helping heart centered entrepreneurs get more customers and clients from Facebook. She provides Social Media Services to business owners through a range of services, which include boot camps, one on one, group and self-study training and she also offers 'done for you' strategies and implementation. Sherri-Lee is an authorized local expert for constant contact and she uses this Facebook platform herself and she encourages her clients to use it too because this really is a platform for growing your email list. One of her strategies for Facebook is helping you to grow your email list. Sherri-Lee explains that Facebook does walk you through the basics of the foundational setup, however, they don't tell you exactly why you're doing what you need to be doing, so she will be covering some of that with you, today. Listen in now, to find out what you really need to know, about how to set up your Business Facebook Page, as a foundation for your business.

Show highlights:

  • Sherri-Lee explains how to set up a Facebook Page for a business. If you have already done yours, Sherri-Lee recommends that you check it every six months, to ensure that your information is both current and relevant, as things do change.
  • Setting a custom domain name, or a custom URL. Remember though, that once you've set it you can't change it.
  • When you should consider setting your domain name as your personal name, rather than your business name and vice versa.
  • Thinking towards the future, about how you're going to build your best relationships and connections with people. If you're a smaller business and you want to build your business relationships, you can use Facebook to help you to deepen those connections.
  • How to best deal with your profile image. Ask yourself if people are going to feel more connected to your business if they can see your face in the profile picture, as opposed to a logo, or if they can see your name, as opposed to a company name. If you're a smaller business, people are going to want to see your face, as it personalizes your business.
  • The cover image is a great opportunity to share what you do and who you serve, with your prospective audience. An emotionally responsive image for your audience can work really well here- before and after images could work well for Designers.
  • Sherri-Lee suggests using tools like Picmonkey or Canva to help you to size your photos for your profile and cover images.
  • How to add information via the comments of your cover image.
  • You want to make sure that you fill out the sections on your page, like the 'about' section and then check them every six months.
  • What to post that will work best for you. If you used your Facebook Page in the same way that you use your profile, your engagement would change.
  • Stop being so professional that you only market on your page. Be personal and post a variety of content and share some of your personality. People want to know who you are and what you stand for.
  • Post more often than you think you should- like three to five times a day.
  • Facebook grades your likes, comments, and shares. Sharing has the highest score and so gets the most reach.
  • To know the best time to post on your Facebook page- Within the settings tab, on your Facebook page, you can click on posts and see a graph, which represents the time of day that people who like your posts, are on Facebook.
  • Use your posts to get to know what people want from you, on your page.
  • Get people to answer questions on your page, to get them to remember you.

A Gift For You: If you want to learn more about how to use your Facebook Page for business, Sherri-Lee has a  free five-day program, Facebook For Business Made Easy Program, which is available at www.socialmediaminder.com/fbmadeeasy

Links:

Sherri's Website: http://www.socialmediaminder.com

Sherri's Twitter: https://twitter.com/socialmediamndr

Sherri's Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/SocialMediaMinder/
Aug 21, 2017

Today we have a particularly inspiring episode! If you're the type of businessperson who takes action and can appreciate it when others do too, you're really going to learn a lot from today's guest, Darci Hether. She's on the show today to let you know that if and when you come across new ideas or business strategies, if you not only hear them, but you also implement them, you can change your business for the better. Listen in to find out more. You're going to love this show!

Darci began her Design career in 1998, in Southern California, before moving to New York City in 2002.  Once there, she worked as a Lead Designer and Project Manager for notable and award winning firms, like Workshop APD and Vicente Wolf Associates. Then, in 2008 Darci founded Darci Hether New York. She was named 'Rising Star' by New York Cottages and Gardens. Listen in today, as Darci shares how she turned up both the productivity and profitability on her Interior Design Firm, this year.

 Show highlights:

  • Darci explains how she went from inspiration to action.
  • Darci found it very difficult to rewrite her bio, so she contacted Fred Berns (#48) for a consultation.
  • Darci explains her new approach to being compensated for the work she does and how she feels about it. She really understands her value now.
  • Darci explains how she managed to implement the new advice she received, after already having been in business for ten years. She was both excited and terrified!
  • How Darci arrived at the fee that she charges for a consultation. There are many hidden things to also be taken into consideration.
  • Darci now brings a contract along with her to an initial consultation, for the client to review.
  • Sometimes a client only needs a consultation with Darci for an hour or two and nothing more. Darci finds that this can work for her, now that she's set a specific fee for her consultations.
  • Darci explains how she's utilized 'time chunking'.
  • Darci explains her thought processes that went into the way that she created her Employee handbook.
  • Darci suggests that you find a trusted colleague that you can reach out to regularly, for support.
  • Some great advice: Go and think of all the things that you've been inspired to do differently, in your business (that you've not yet done), pick one of them, set a time frame and just do it!

LuAnn wants you to know that she's been asked to moderate a panel, on Designing Tech, at America's Mart in Atlanta, on the 26th or the 27th of September. The dates have not yet been finalized.

She will also be hosting another Facebook Live Event, at the opening celebration of the brand new Kravet Showroom in Philadelphia. This will happen around the first week in October. Final dates still to be announced.

Aug 18, 2017

The guest for today's Power Talk Friday is A.J.Wilcox and he brings a brand new topic to the show. In the more than two hundred episodes that have aired over the past year and a half, we have never before discussed Linkedin and so A.J. has just become our Linkedin Guru. LuAnn has never considered Linkedin to be a particularly hot platform for the Interior Design Industry, because Interior Design is a very visual industry, which makes use of platforms like Instagram and Facebook, and Linkedin seems a little serious by comparison.

LuAnn does have a Linkedin profile, however she does literally nothing at all with it. In fact, she recently told a story on one of the podcasts about a Designer who reached out to her with a private message on Linkedin, complimenting her about the show and LuAnn knew nothing about it for almost three months! She knows, however, that every bit of social media and marketing is really valuable and if you're going to do something, you need to do it right, so she's really glad to have A.J. on the show with her today. Listen in to find out what you really need to know about Linkedin. 

 

A.J.'s a tri-athlete and he lives in Utah with his wife and four kids.  He fell in love with Linkedin back in 2011 and he liked it so much that he started an agency which focuses on Linkedin ads only. When LuAnn found out that his company car is a go-cart, she knew that this was going to be a really fun interview!  Listen in to find out how Linkedin can really work for you, as Designers. It's a very good platform for being professional.

 

Show highlights:

 

  • A.J. explains some of the basics of Linkedin and where it's value really lies.
  • Some really nice short cuts that you can take, when setting up with Linkedin, to get what you do out there and in everybody's minds. You can ignore the rules and work out of the box!
  • About three or four months ago, Linkedin underwent a re-design and changed a whole bunch of stuff around. Now they've added a free form field, for your profile. Use that to explain what you're all about and why people should care about you and want to hire you.
  • There are portfolio editions of Linkedin, where you can add video clips. This is very powerful to help you prove your worth.
  • A.J. would not necessarily treat the resume section of the Linkedin profile as such. He would rather talk about the results you've had and why you're worth paying attention to.
  • Linkedin seems a bit stiff and professional, so it's worth injecting your unique personality into it, to make you really stand out.
  • Talk simply on Linkedin and assume that nobody has any idea of what it is that you do, so you'll be educating them. Try to be fun, because then you really will stand out.
  • A.J. has a really cool hack, for getting yourself out there on Linkedin.
  • Linkedin bought a company called Pulse, which is a news app, with the goal to bring people to their platform more regularly and to get them to spend more time there. They've made it socially interactive, so you can comment and like- and even go viral.
  • If you post your status on a project on  Linkedin, all your contacts will see it. This is a really great opportunity to connect with some powerful business people with a great deal of disposable income.
  • A post on Linkedin can even stay up on your feed for a day and a half. This can really save you time.
  • You want to generate a reaction. Ask for feedback. You want people to comment so that your post spreads. 
  • Run a quiz or ask a question, to get people to react.
  • You can now tag people on Linkedin.
  • Endorsing for skill sets- This is to provide social proof of your most proficient skill sets.
  • Be very targeted about who you want to have relationships with and who you want introductions to, on Linkedin. 
  • Once you're connected to someone on Linkedin, you have unlimited free messages between the two of you. You also then have access to their email address. 
  • The benefits of upgrading to the paid version of Linkedin- their Premium Profile. 
  • The Influencers on Linkedin.  If you write an article that gets a lot of response, it could be kicked up and get to reach a huge number of people.
  • How to write an article on Linkedin. It's just like writing a full blog post, with features and all.
  • Use Linkedin to drive traffic to your website.
  • You can also find specific groups on Linkedin and interact with people there. It's a great way to grow your network.

Connect with AJ:

His website

http://b2linked.com 

His twitter
@B2Linked
 
His LinkedIn:
linkedin.com/company/B2Linked
Aug 16, 2017

Today, we have the second show in our sponsored content series by Cruelty Free Design. Deborah Rosenberg, of DiMare Design and the founder and creator of Cruelty Free Design, has sponsored three shows. The first show was episode #212, where we spoke in depth about Cruelty Free Design and the program that she has developed. Today's show is going to feature the marketing and the resources that you get, when going through the Cruelty Free Course. The third show will be airing in a few weeks and that will be an interview with a Designer who has completed the course. If all this is new information for you, if you haven't heard any of these shows before, LuAnn suggests that you start off by listening to episode #82, where we first met Deborah Rosenberg, a really smart lady who runs a great business, and there she discussed her Design Firm, DiMare Design in Miami. Then, in episode #117, we discussed her certified Cruelty Free Course in more depth and about how it was getting ready to launch. LuAnn really hopes that you're enjoying this series and that it's something that's making you think. If animal rights, veganism and Cruelty Free is a passion of yours, all the better, because it certainly is a very profitable avenue to consider, from a marketing standpoint. Listen in now, to find out more.

In today's show, we are going to talk about the second set of information, which is important for you, as Interior Designers in this emerging field. Here's the thing about Deborah- if you go back and listen to the other episodes with her, you'll see and hear her commitment for yourself.  She's the creator of a fully accredited, online educational course, geared for students, designers, retailers, manufacturers and companies, in the Design and Textile Industry. The course, Certified Cruelty Free, educates businesses and consumers about Cruelty Free alternatives and provides them with vegan resources. Deborah donates a portion of all the proceeds from both companies, towards saving the lives of animals, killed for their skins, in the industry. This is really a mission of love, for Deborah. Listen in as we talk about the resources that are available to you, as Interior Designers and also about how you, as a Designer, would approach the marketing of these products. (Remember, that if you actually take the course, you will get access to the full 'bible' of resources.)

Show highlights:

  • Deborah gives a quick description of what Vegan Design is all about.
  • Deborah discusses some of the fabulous alternatives that can be used, instead of wool, silk or animal skins. The faux alternatives are durable and well priced.
  • Even Bentley, (the car) who were known for their leather interiors, are coming up with a vegan car as an alternative, because their consumers are now demanding vegan interiors.
  • Banana silk looks and feels exactly like silk. It even has that sheen.
  • Kravet have a huge amount of faux leathers as well as tons of other resources and fabrics which are vegan.
  • Deborah's company is reaching out to many manufacturers, to have their badge put on the fabrics which are acceptable as vegan alternatives.
  • According to research, one in three Australians are willing to pay more for socially responsible products.
  • Deborah's company now has it's own line, called Arthur Avenue, which has completely vegan custom upholstery pieces.
  • There are also vegan alternatives available for the less expensive lines.
  • There is a company in New York, called Aurora Lampshades, who do vegan lighting alternatives.
  • A lot of paint contains a mineral which comes from cows. Vegan paints are available, however they are a little difficult to apply.
  • How a Designer can go about approaching clients about this subject.
  • Faux leather actually performs better than real leather, when they are placed side by side.
  • Vegan alternatives are most conducive to someone who has allergies, or even to children with autism.
  • There is a huge network of support available for Designers doing the Cruelty Free Course.
  • Deborah offers some great tips for marketing vegan options. The key is really to surround yourself with like minded people.
  • Vegan Design is not only about the animals. About ninety percent of the people working in tanneries in India die before the age of fifty, due to the disgraceful environments that they work in.
  • The world is changing really fast. Over half of all Americans won't buy a product that they believe to be unethical.
  • Creating a peaceful space that has no blood, or tragedy in it.

Deborah explains all about her Cruelty Free Course. Go to www.certifiedcrueltyfree.net to get the details, or to sign up. The course is usually $350, however if you put in the promo code  LuAnn, you will get 20% off, so you will only pay $280. After doing the course, you will be added to Deborah's database.

Aug 14, 2017

Have you heard of the Morpholio Project yet?  Well, today LuAnn has something pretty cool to share with you. Morpholio is an IOS app and LuAnn has the co-creator, Anna Kenoff, with her, on the show. This app was designed as a tool for your presentations, for working with and collaborating and critiquing presentations, with your clients.  The news about this app has been featured in Wired, Fast Company, USA Today, ABC News, Arch Daily, Dwell and also a dozen other outlets. LuAnn really thinks that you're going to like this awesome and groundbreaking app for your design business, so listen in to find out more about how it can really save you time and energy!

Anna,  is an Architect who found a need, while doing her work. Like many other brilliant people that have been featured on the show this past year, she gathered some of her smart friends and together and they built an answer to her problems. And so, Morpholio was born! Anna has had some really significant projects, as an Architect, including the Queen's library, in collaboration with New York City's Design Excellence Program, New York's first edible school yard, in Brooklyn and Public Farm One, commissioned by Moma PS One. She has a Master's in Architecture, from Columbia University and a Bachelor's of Science in Architecture, from the University of Virginia. Listen in now, to find out more about this really innovative new app and it's really awesome features for Designers.

 

Show highlights:

  • Anna explains what Morpholio is all about, what it comprises of and how she came up with it.
  • Anna walks you through how a Morpholio Board will work for you, in real time, during a presentation.
  • Anna explains some of the technicalities of working with the Morpholio Mood Board.
  • Morpholio has a curated library of thousands of amazing pieces of furniture, fixtures, fittings and finishes. Anna explains how this works for you, when you're designing a Mood Board with Morpholio- and you can create and add your own library too.
  • The really sophisticated and smart tools that Anna and her team create for iPads.
  • Morpholio can really hold tons of information, in a much smaller format.
  • Pinterest is such an important way that Designers and their clients communicate, so Morpholio has a portal directly to Pinterest.
  • Morpholio has recently partnered with Pinterest, so it's the only app on the planet that they are allowing to portal into your Secret Boards.
  • You can adjust the colors on the images, with Morpholio.
  • The research mindset that Anna and her team started out with.
  • How you, as a Designer, could use Pinterest in conjunction with Morpholio.
  • You can actually manipulate the images when you import them into Morpholio.
  • Morpholio is a really efficient tool for smaller businesses- and its almost revived the iPad!
  • How to become a member of Morpholio.
  • Go to #morpholioboard on Instagram and have a look!
  • It really doesn't cost much, to use Morpholio. It's only $3,99 for the Entry Level App and $11,99 for the Pro Version.

 

Links:

 

The Morpholio website: www.morpholioapps.com

 

You can also find Morpholio on Facebook and Instagram

Aug 11, 2017

The guest for today's Power Talk Friday is Natalie Eckdahl and LuAnn is absolutely delighted to welcome her to the show! Natalie has really helped LuAnn in her journey and even after thirty years of being in business, there are things that she's learned from Natalie and taken back to Window Works!  Listen in to find out what Natalie has to share with you today.

Natalie is the founder of the Biz Chix Community and she's the host of the Biz Chix Podcast. She's a Business Strategist and a High-Performance Coach, helping high achieving women entrepreneurs to build, grow and scale their businesses and she does this across all industries and time zones. Natalie, who holds an MBA, has been recognized as one of the top women in business to listen to and she's been featured in Inc, Fast Company, Huffington Post, and Entrepreneur. She has twenty years of experience and she's done over two hundred podcast interviews and is famous for doing her really valuable on-air coaching calls. Natalie is a very intuitive lady, who recognizes the little nuggets in people and really helps and moves them.  In addition to all of this, she has a husband, Mark, and three kids, aged two to fifteen. Natalie really is one busy lady! Listen in, as Natalie shares her expertise with you, on the show today.

Show highlights:

  • Some of the common things that ring true with people who are struggling with their businesses.
  • Dealing with confidence issues and your mindset, when starting out in business.
  • Let people know what you do, in your business- you never know who is going to have a contact for you.
  • Using the art of balance, with your postings on social media.
  • You really do need a separate business bank account, when starting out in your business. You will really feel like the boss when you eventually transfer your profits to your personal account, for your family to spend, or save.
  • Knowing your numbers in business- this is very important! Also, get some advice from a Tax Professional.
  • It's really worth hiring a book keeper, to get your business set up. Then you can check in with them on a quarterly basis. It will save you time and money, going forward.
  • Focus and work on your strengths. Outsource the things that you really find hard to do.
  • Why, as a Designer, you shouldn't charge too little. Have the confidence to charge what you really are worth.
  • Most women really struggle with issues of confidence. Having an accountability partner really helps.
  • How Natalie mixes her Masterminds.
  • Giving yourself permission to take some time off from work. Remember that Parkinson's Law states that work expands to fill the time available for its completion.
  • Being accountable for your time. You can even hire people to set deadlines for you and help you to get creative things done on time.
  • Developing boundaries with your clients. They often don't realize that they're asking more of you than necessary.
  • If you're married and money's not coming in from your business, your husband is not going to take your business seriously- he's going to think you have a hobby. Creating a regular amount that you can commit to the family will smooth this out and make you feel confident about yourself and your business.
  • Natalie discusses the Live Event that she's planning for Women Entrepreneurs in Orange County, in between San Diego and Los Angeles, from the 18th to the 20th of October this year.

Links:

Natalie's Podcast:

Biz Chix Podcast - Female Entrepreneurs Women in Business

You can go to Natalie's website. www.bizchix.com  and click on the yellow 'community' button, to get an invitation to join her free, open Facebook Group for women.

Facebook Group:
https://www.facebook.com/bizchixpodcast/
Aug 9, 2017

Today, we have Kate O'Hara back on the show. Kate handles the marketing for Martha O'Hara Interiors and she has managed to grow their Facebook Page to two hundred thousand followers- enough to almost make LuAnn's brain explode! A lot of Designers have Facebook Pages, so Kate has graciously agreed to come back on the show, to help you to figure out and understand how you can try to duplicate what she has managed to do for her Design Firm. Listen in as Kate gives you some really actionable ways to do this.

Show highlights:

  • It really makes sense to go back and look at how you have things set up on your Facebook Page because every few months, something on Facebook is changing and you don't always know what that is and what you can do that's new. It's important to often check how you're set up and to update your page and your profile, as time passes.
  • Firstly, you need to think about the Facebook platform itself and what you want it to do for you. It can really be so many different things to different businesses.
  • You need to be creating consistent posts that you know your viewers can rely on, that they will The posts need to be relevant to the people who are following you.
  • There is a lot of success to be found in the more subtle nuances of social media- Facebook in particular. For example, are you trying to attract new clients, or are you wanting to build and interact with your community?
  • Putting thought to who you want to reach out to, may change the type of post that you're going to put together.
  • Kate explains how you're going to set up your Facebook Page: 1) Go back and look at how you've set up your business page (this must be separate from your personal page). 2) You may want to adjust your custom URL. 3) Fill in your 'about' page. All that info really is important. 4) Make your page really visually appealing- the cover photo is a huge opportunity for businesses.
  • A Call To Action can even be a contact button.
  • Take the time to fix things that look unprofessional- otherwise, you will appear
  • The posts that you're creating are really important! You need to share your work in ways that are meaningful to the people that you're talking to. They need to be fun and engaging.
  • Ways that you can add that extra layer of fun, or usefulness of the images that you're posting.
  • You will serve yourself best by being as mutually promotional with other firms, as you can be.
  • A little Facebook secret- when you're looking at your news feed, you see both what is recent and what is popular. Likes, shares, and comments are really important! Think quality over quantity.
  • Facebook really gives you great and direct feedback. Go and look at your analytics and adjust your course, if necessary.
  • Pay attention to what people are saying in their comments. Respond, or even edit things, if necessary.
  • You are ultimately in control of the tone that you're willing to accept on your page.
  • Schedule out your posts in batches, to remain consistent and save yourself time.
  • Consistency really is key with your posting.
 
Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/oharainteriors/
 
Website: http://oharainteriors.com
Aug 7, 2017

Welcome to a solo show with a big purpose! I’m dedicating this episode as a bona fide, unsolicited shout-out to Rachel Moriarty of Design + Style. I mention her often on the show because she is always impressive, but she just now hit the one-year anniversary of going Facebook Live to her consumer community EVERY DAY FOR ONE YEAR. To show my significant high five to Rachel for her accomplishment, let’s talk about some of the inspiration she has spread around in the design community.

What you’ll hear in this episode:

  • Why Facebook Live?
    • Use it to make connections, grow your business, and help people
    • How Rachel’s interior design tips and advice have helped her fellow designers
  • Since her “challenge” began, she and Dixie Willard have started the Design + Style podcast, using audio AND video to stay on the cutting edge of delivering content
  • How Rachel’s success is impacting me to take advantage of Facebook Live and why I’ve been so hesitant to do it because of the work, commitment, and consistency required to DO IT RIGHT
  • Why Rachel and Dixie are soon launching another podcast
  • Other Facebook groups that are valuable to designers:
    • What They Don’t Teach You in Design School, with Veronica Solomon
    • Interior Design Business Strategies, with Claire Jefford
  • The myth (and the fear) is that you shouldn’t share “your secrets” with your competitors, but here are the facts:
    • Your brand is WHO YOU ARE
    • Don’t be afraid to share your systems
    • No one will connect with your consumers like you do
  • In honour of Rachel’s accomplishment and what she’s created, it’s the perfect time to launch my Facebook Coaching podcasts, so stay tuned for more inspiration in design!

Resources:

Rachel's podcast: Design+Style
 
Rachel's website: Rachel M Interiors
 
Her episode on our Show #55: Rachel Moriarty – Message to solopreneurs – Act As If the World is Watching
 
Rachel's Email: rachelminteriors@gmail.com
 
Her Face Book Page for Designers: Design And Style Podcast
 
Claire Jefford’s group: Interior Design Business Strategies
 
And Veronica Solomon’s group:
What They Don’t Teach You In Design School
Aug 4, 2017

Welcome to another episode of Power talk Friday! Today LuAnn has Stephanie Chung with her on the show. Stephanie has a company called Stephanie Chung and Associates, where she offers Sales Training, Executive Coaching and also Small Business Mentorship, to companies nationwide. Stephanie also has a course, called High Ticket Selling Made Simple which has been designed to help business owners sell more and make more. Listen in to find out more about Stephanie and her company.

Stephanie used to work as a Sales Executive in the Aviation and Private Jet Industry, where she mastered the art of high ticket selling. She has mentored and coached numerous people, including some of the highest paid, most elite Sales Professionals in the country. She serves Business leaders, Entrepreneurs, and Sales Professionals, using her proven Executive Coaching and Sales Training. Stephanie is a contributor on ABC, CBS, and NBC and she's authored Profit Like A Girl- A Woman's Guide To Kicking Butt In Sales And Leadership and also Embrace The Suck- How To Grow And Succeed In Business. LuAnn is really beyond tickled with all of this, so listen in now, as she and Stephanie discuss the mindset moves that are necessary to really scale your sales.

Show highlights:

  • What it all really comes down to is your own version of your own self-worth. Your financial beliefs play a role in the whole equation and sometimes people tend to struggle with that when selling their intellectual property. Stephanie digs into all the factors that contribute to that struggle.
  • Financial self-worth and your mindset- why you should be very careful to never let your own financial beliefs creep into any sales conversation.
  • It's never about you- it's always about the buyer in front of you.
  • Stephanie explains how you can break out of a limited mindset. Remember that it's not your concern how much your customer can afford. You need to ensure that your presentation of your product (your digital footprint), or service actually aligns with your product or service.
  • Run your business with excellence.
  • If someone agrees to meet with you, it means that they've already done some research about you and they have already decided that you are going to be worth their time.
  • Always approach a conversation with a buyer by looking at what it is that they want or need.
  • Ask the buyer questions that go a little deeper, because sometimes the buyer can't really articulate what it is that they need.
  • Use the power of silence.
  • Really knowing your stuff and getting results will help build your confidence.
  • Stephanie shares a technique that she uses with her VIP clients, called Pre-emptive Strike. Know the objections that are going to come your way and bring them up in advance, so that you can control the message.
  • Remember to never bring your price down, if the buyer can't afford it. Rather take something away. This way you keep your price integrity.
  • Only ask the buyer questions that you don't know the answers to. This will help you better understand how to solve their problem.
  • After setting your agenda with a client, mention that you're not necessarily the Designer for everyone.... Great for getting the right
  • If you really want to become a better salesperson, there is ample information out there, for you.
  • Stephanie has done courses before, specifically for Interior Designers. (For example, High Ticket Selling Made Simple)

Links:

Stephanie's website: www.stephaniechung.com You can find loads of free resources there.

To get a free download of Stephanie's book, go to: www.profitlikeagirl.com

Aug 2, 2017

Today's show is a special one. It's a sponsored show- sponsored by Cruelty Free Designs, which is the brain child and love project of Deborah Rosenberg, of DiMare Designs in Miami, Florida. Deborah has been on the show before, on episodes #82 and #117 and now she's sponsoring three shows, to tell you- her colleagues, all about Cruelty Free Design. Listen in to find out more.

These three shows will cover firstly what it really means to be Cruelty Free Design, then the resources which are available for Cruelty Free Design and then there will also be a special episode with a Designer who has taken Deborah's course. LuAnn really hopes that you will enjoy this little series! Listen in now, to the first episode, with Deborah Rosenberg, where we're going to take a little time to give the back story of why this is so personal to Deborah- why she has transitioned to making her whole business cruelty free and why this really is such an important thing for you to think about.

  • Show highlights:
  • Deborah has developed a Certification Course in Cruelty Free Design and she explains how this came to be an undertaking for herself and her Firm to develop and also why it's so important to her.
  • The really cruel and inhumane ways that animals are treated, within the corporate industry, being viewed as commodities, rather than sentient creatures. It's really hard to believe what human beings are actually capable of doing to animals!
  • There really is no such thing as responsible wool, or responsible fur.
  • Does it really cost too much to be compassionate?
  • This cruelty mostly happens in countries where there are no regulations.
  • The really awful conditions for humans in tanneries.
  • 56% of Americans stop buying from sources that they view as unethical.
  • The importance of getting educated about all this, as a Designer.
  • Going vegan and the environment- these things are all connected.
  • Sixteen million people in the US are now vegan- many of these people have become aware of the cruelty in these industries through watching videos.
  • The different ways that you could approach this, as a Designer.
  • Animal fur, or leather can cause problems for children with autism, or for people with allergies.
  • Deborah's Certification Course In Cruelty Free Design has now become accredited.
websites:
http://www.certifiedcrueltyfree.net
http://www.dimaredesign.com

 

Jul 31, 2017

Today's guest on the show is Carly Waters, the Principal of Carly Waters Style. Carly has really loved design ever since she was a little girl. As the daughter of an attorney, however, she followed in her Dad's footsteps and became an attorney too. Listen in to find out how she ultimately managed to change that and follow her heart and her dreams.

Carly graduated from UC Hastings in 2010 and started out in what would be a career in Family Law, at an esteemed Law Firm in San Francisco. Her heart really wasn't in it though, so when she went on maternity leave while pregnant with her son, she rediscovered her love for interiors. She designed their apartment in San Francisco and got it featured on Apartment Therapy. This was when she started taking on some Design clients, on the side. After going back to practicing Family Law, however, she realized pretty quickly that it was time for her to leave the law behind. So, when they moved to LA for a job opportunity for her husband, Carly decided that this was the right time for her to strike out on her own, so she started Carly Waters Style in 2014. Here's the thing- in these three short years, Carly has been featured in My Domain, People, Rue, Simply Spaced, Apartment Therapy and Martha Stewart. Listen in now, to find out how Carly managed to achieve all of this, in such a short period of time.

Show highlights:

  • Carly explains how she managed to achieve all that she has, only three years after opening her firm. She really went about it in an intentional way and hired a Coach, Annie Little, who specifically helps attorneys to leave the law. She also spent a full six months making preparations and getting her ducks in a row.
  • Carly really made use of her friends and connections to get ahead in her business.
  • Carly started out initially with organizing clients.
  • After about six months, she decided to take things further and started working with a Realtor and found a house to renovate. This was the house that she used for her portfolio and it was also shot for her My Domain feature.
  • Carly realized that she can't do everything, so she hires people who are experts and she oversees them. She helped a friend with her office, in exchange for putting all her drawings onto CAD.
  • What really stood out for Carly, from her first big project was that you should not try to 'band aid' the problems in the house, because it will eventually end up costing you a whole lot more.
  • It's really important to have your plans and drawings ready, before bringing the contractors in. You will always have problems to solve, however it really does help to be prepared.
  • Carly has really learned to see her worth and understand her value, over time.
  • Carly has really made full use mentors and her network of friends and connections, to help her to learn out about the aspects of the business that she needed to understand.
  • How Carly managed to be published in so many publications in such a short period of time. She used her contacts and knew that she really had to have professional photographs, amongst other things.
  • Carly explains about her hourly rate and about her minimum fee of $5000, both of which she's stated on her website.
  • You really need to surround yourself with people that really support you and elevate you.

Links:

Carly's website: www.carlywatersstyle.com

Jul 28, 2017

The guest for today's Power Talk Friday is Yian Quach.  Yian, who is originally from Seattle, Washington, has been designing websites since 2015 and he helps professionals in the Design Industry to cure their web site pain so that they can grow their businesses. There is a particular mention, on his website, that LuAnn found quite interesting- in addition to his role as Website Doctor, Yian really loves educating and his original career was as an English Teacher!  Listen in as Yian explains all about his real genius ways with websites.

Yian's clients have been published in a number of top shelf magazines, including Architectural Digest, Lux, Hudson Mod and Editor At Large. The thing about Yian is that he has a rare combination of skills in the areas of Website  Design, Copywriting and Coding and he's also familiar with all the nuances of the Interior Design Industry. He regularly attends Industry Trade Shows, so you may even know him. In the past year, he's been at High Point Spring Market, Brooklyn Designs, ICFF (where he and LuAnn did a Facebook Live for Curated Kravet), The D and D Building Spring Market and later this month, he'll be at Las Vegas Furniture Market. Listen in now, to learn about the really actionable ways that Yian works to help people to cure their website pains.

Show highlights:

  • The kinds of website pains that Yian cures.
  • Yian explains the details of his Criteria List of twelve items, which he uses to evaluate websites.
  1. Does the website feel clean and easy to use?
  2. Does the website feel complete and up to date?
  3. Does the website feel thoughtfully written and succinct?
  4. Does the website feel fresh?
  5. Does the website feel guided?
  6. Does the website feel beautiful?
  7. Does the website feel personal enough?
  8. Does the website feel cohesive?
  9. Does the website/designer feel endorsed?
  10. Does the website/designer feel credible and authoritative?
  11. Does the website feel actionable?
  12. Does the website feel polished?
  • Yian tests his very simple Grading System (A+ to E) that he uses to evaluate websites, on his own website.
  • Consider hiring a wedding photographer to get a really great video for your website.
  • Yian helps LuAnn to evaluate her website, using his Criteria List.
  • Yian points out some missed opportunities on LuAnn's website.
  • The impact of having website photos that fill the whole screen.
  • The cohesiveness of the voice on websites is something that is often overlooked.
  • Yian points out where LuAnn's website could be more actionable.
  • Yian assists LuAnn with ways to tweak the logo and header on her website.
  • Yian encourages you to take advantage of his Website Review.
  • Yian's Free Giveaway- Yian will be giving away five free Website Reviews to the first five professionals in the Design Industry, to contact him at housedigitaldesign.com/a-well-designed-business and articulate their particular web site pain, within one week of this podcast being aired.

Yian will be covering the Las Vegas Furniture Market, later this month, on the Tastefully Inspired Facebook Page, with lots of live videos. Like the page and ensure that you get the notifications when it goes live.

website:
https://housedigitaldesign.com
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