I’ve always been one of the most expensive home stagers in my city, from the time I started my business, and I’ve never made any apologies about it. The way I saw it, and still do, was that it’s fine if everyone else wants to give their time away for basically nothing. It doesn’t mean I have to do the same thing.
Instead of trying to compete on price, which is a big mistake for almost any entrepreneur, I put my energy into marketing myself to be perceived as the expert home stager in my market. I wanted people to come to me when they were looking for the best. That led to me getting clients who knew they were going to have to pay more for my services and it was a much more effective marketing strategy than promoting myself as the cheapest stager out there.
If you promote your services as being cheap, you’ll attract penny-pinching clients who don’t value what you have to offer.
People who only care about price will argue every step of the way about any recommendation you might make that might cost extra. You’ll get the people who haven’t spent money maintaining their homes over the years and will balk at repainting over their 1965 decor. You’ll get people who say, “why should I replace that rusted out mailbox or the cracked front window, the new owners can worry about it.”
If you’ve gone into the home staging business because you’re a creative person, I can tell you that sort of client will completely stifle your creativity and suck all the joy out of giving advice and envisioning the potential of a property. You’ll also have to worry more about bounced checks and chasing your money.
Marketing is more than telling people what you charge for your services. You have to position yourself, properly explain the benefits of your services in a way that is meaningful to the potential customer, learn how to convey the right image and relate to people in a way that makes them want to work with you. You really should have a prospect sold on you long before you start talking price. They should want you bad enough that your rate is not an issue. Of course price enters into a buying decision, but the point is you want it to be far down the list after other considerations, not your client’s number one concern.
Home stagers, do you have a good example about how marketing based on low rates can lead to nightmare clients? Please share by leaving a comment below!
Debra Gould, The Staging Diva®
President, Six Elements Inc. Home Staging
Debra Gould knows how to make money as a home stager and she developed the Staging Diva Home Staging Training Program to teach others how to earn a living doing something they love. In course 2 of the Staging Diva Program, Debra teaches her students how to have an effective pricing strategy and build credibility with potential clients. There are over 4000 Staging Diva students around the world.
[tags]home stagers, home stager rates, debra gould, expert home stager, staging diva, home staging marketing, home staging price, price for home stagers[/tags]