So far in this series, we have talked about creating curiosity with Press Releases and announcements as well as giving your potential clients what they really, really, really want in order to build celebrity for your home staging business.
This week, we are going to venture into the idea of limited availability. Immediately, you will default to thinking “I have to be available all the time for my clients otherwise they won’t want me.” Actually they want you more when they can’t have you all the time.
Think back to your dating days, did you ever play ‘coy’ to get someone’s attention. Really, business is no different. Jordan McAuley of ‘Celebrity Leverage’ talks about Magnolia Bakery and how they put ‘cupcakes’ on the map by offering limited access and controlled quantities…of cupcakes!
Magnolia Bakery literally has stanchions around their entrance so people have to ‘wait in line’ to get cupcakes. Then, their VIP’s can only get up to 12 at one time. They also have limited releases on new flavors and the list goes on and on.
How does this translate to your home staging (or real estate) business? Easy. When you have a home staging client that wants to book your home staging services, tell them the two days and times that you have available each week. Don’t just say ‘when do you want to do this,’ put up your own stanchions so they know how truly in demand you really are. Let them know that you have Wednesday at 9am or Friday at 11am and ask which works best for them.
Next make sure that you make them feel like a celebrity by customizing everything you do for them. Leave your promotional information and edit it so it says “This home was prepared for Kelly Smith of ReMax Properties by Simple Appeal Home Staging.” You may even want to take a photo of you and Kelly and place it in a small frame next to your promotional information. Don’t forget to leave your business cards or flyers, along with Kelly’s so people can contact you both.
This not only celebritizes Kelly, but also your services and guess what else…that’s right! Every single agent that sees that is going to want it as well (just another way to ‘give them what they want’) and take your card and give you a call!
By the way, most agents that you work with will also let you follow up with other agents that have viewed your home staging job. When you do this, make sure you treat them as a ‘celebrity’ by commenting on their expertise in showing such a great property.
Then you can send them a follow up ‘press kit’ that includes Happy Client Comments, Information on how home staging can help their business, a small bit about you and why your business is different, your contact information, a special offer and some kind of piece that makes your business appear as a celebrity such as a newspaper clipping that was written about you that you frame.
The point to all of this is to not be 100% available and accessible because then people know you are not busy and possibly desperate which will make them question your quality of work.
By having “limited availability” in your schedule, you will begin to celebritize your business so people will want you even more than if you were constantly available.
I know that I will receive flack from some of you telling me this is poor customer service, but that is not what I have said at all. The best customer service is delivered when you manage your client’s expectations and by telling them exactly what they will receive, how and when, you will service them far better than if you keep the door open for question.
Today, put up those stanchions, systemize that business and begin to run the only celebrity driven home staging business in your town!
Founder, APSD The Association of Property Scene Designers
The World Leader in Home Staging Training and Certification
For more information on Karen Schaefer and APSD and to receive a free home staging CD go to www.APSDmembers.com