Let’s face it, good Architects and Interior Designers are mostly introverts and face to face networking is not our cup of tea. We prefer to spend our time relaxed because we harness our creative thoughts through peaceful and tranquil environments. But we often forget to build our network to those who will acquire our service. This is where Linkedin becomes important to us.
Check your Social Selling Index
As an Architect and Interior Design professional, how can Linkedin help in marketing your profession?
It was 7 years ago when we founded our company. We have been using Linkedin as a way to acquire leads and transform them into customers ever since. I joined the social media network in 2009 because I find it suitable for me being an introvert kind of marketer to engage in a business to business setting.
Things have been changing since then. Social selling is starting to make its way to the mainstream market. It is becoming a more widely acceptable medium for acquiring customers and making a sale.
3 Simple Steps to use Linkedin as a Design Professional
1. Build your professional brand, create a profile that resonates with your style and attitude. Start with a professional looking photo that doesn’t necessarily need to be a headshot in suit and tie but something that showcases you as a designer. Write down your experience, education, and accomplishments in detail and try to get your peers to endorse your skills. Furthermore, ask customers or colleagues who have worked with you to write down a recommendation to reinforce your credibility.
2. Educate your connections, write short articles and share your experience with people that can relate and will learn from. Examples of articles I have written on Linkedin are Guidelines for mezzanine floor construction and the Office fit-out process in Singapore. This way people will view you as a thought leader and a reliable design professional. If writing is not for you, why not share curated articles, those you read from another source and click share so connections in your network can read it. You are what you read and it will give more substance to you as a professional.
3. Engage with your connections, is the most important part of your social selling experience and Linkedin gives us the opportunity to add connections and communicate with potential customers. Through liking and commenting on their feeds or sending them a private message or inmails, we are able to market our service indirectly without having to meet face to face initially. It basically allows Architects and Interior Design professionals to sell their services without being in crowded networking sessions or group gatherings. It also eliminates the cost of advertising and other paid marketing services.
“Before meeting a potential customer, try to do a search on Linkedin. Chances are they will show up. Read through the individual’s profile so you will have an idea of the person you will be dealing with.”
What is the expected result?
Social selling on Linkedin is a process. To follow these 3 simple steps takes months and to develop. A good amount of followers and credible connections take years. Unlike any other social media tool, Linkedin has the best potential to give you the most (ROI) return on investment on time and effort spent in social media. Especially if you are into the business to business environment.
Lastly, try to integrate social selling into your daily work activity. Make it a habit to look at your feeds and be aware of what is going on in your industry. Linkedin has helped me a lot in my career and I am sharing this because I noticed that most of my connections in the Architecture and Interior design field have less than 500 connections. This has to change, we have to adapt to the new norm. More and more working professionals are engaging on Linkedin and with this comes an unlimited opportunity for us designers.
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By: James Paul Pilande, Linkedin Top Social Selling Leader 2014
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