Presenting The Design
May 7, 2013
I hope everyone is having a wonderful Tuesday morning (Wednesday, if in other areas of the world). Please note that today’s blog is aimed mostly at florists and designers. We have been going through the process, step-by-step, and are now at the stage where you have accomplished the following:
You have interviewed the client.
You have grasped a clear understanding of their needs and the vision they have for their event.
You have signed a contract or received a retainer or some kind of payment signaling the job is yours. Note: In previous years, I would give presentations before receiving any payment. Looking back, I see this was a bad Idea. If a potential client insists the job is yours, ask them to pay for the presentation, at the very least.
Now you are ready to show your new client exactly what you plan to give them for their event. This is what is called a presentation.
Be mindful of the emotional responses that are often created by these situations. This is the first time a client will receive a glimpse of what their wedding or event will look like, and likely the first time it will seem real to them. Now, I have had many reactions in these situations, and usually set up two or three table designs in my New York studio. When it’s for a wedding, the bride–usually accompanied by her mother– come in, and many times both tear up. Most of the time, they like something about all of the tables, if not the entire package. I have never had a client not love at least one of the three designs (whew!).
Not only do I find these reactions rewarding, but to know that I have brought a sense of joy to my client brings me great joy. I have also found this approach to be a very effective sales tool. My clients see that I am willing to do the extra work, and many times they see something they feel they must have on one of the other tables, resulting in an additional sale. As a designer, presentations are very exciting. There is always a tension; it could go either way, after all. Though they may or may not love the initial designs, giving them options has made my job a lot easier. Besides, let’s face it: I am a designer. I love to design.
Take a look at the photos above (both from a presentation) and tell me which one you think the clients chose.
A Couple Of Questions:
Do you feel it is right to do a presentation for a job before having a signed contract?
Please share with us your best presentation experience. We’d love to hear it!