Do you love creating beautiful spaces?  Do you walk into a friend’s house and instantly want to rearrange?  Do friends and family always call on you for some decorating help?  Then let’s talk about how to turn your talent and love for decorating into a business. 

Join JoAnne Lenart-Weary for this informative webinar, February 7, 2019, at 7pm ET. It will explore how the decorating world is on fire, and new decolebrities are being discovered everyday.  Let the next one be you. 

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Doing what you love is easy, growing a business is difficult.  But if you want to be in business for many years, then you need to pay as much attention to business and marketing as the part you love.  Here are my 3 tips to take your business from zero to hero in no time.

  1. Treat your business like a job.  Most of you will begin working from home. This can be fabulous in many ways but it is also easy to be distracted. Set up your schedule, find a dedicated place in your home for an office space, (size doesn’t matter) and don’t get distracted by the laundry or other things that call your name. At the beginning, you will invest a great deal of “non-billable” hours as you work on your website, business plan, resource, and vendor list.
  2. Be realistic about profits.  Most businesses will take 12-18 months before you really start making money. Don’t get discouraged and give up.  You need to build credibility and create a demand.  This is going to be hard work but look at me…40+ years later and I am still in business.  Decorating, color, and staging are services you can offer for many years.
  3. Create a Marketing Plan and work it- I hope you realize how lucky you are to have all these great marketing opportunities at your fingertips…for free. I have spent hundreds of thousands over the years on advertising and you don’t have to do that.  Create a marketing plan that is comprehensive and easy to work.  A mix of online presence combined with Face Time (i don’t mean Facebook’s version) to meet potential clients and help them get to know who you are and why they can’t live without you. If you need help creating a Kick Butt Marketing Plan, we can do that for you.


The field of interior decorating and its various niches, such as Home Staging and Color Consultations, are in hot demand.  HGTV, DIY, Facebook, Pinterest, Instagram and more have created an unprecedented interest in the art and science of decorating. As you watch today’s “Deco-lebrities” transform a room in an hour, it seems fun and exciting and can send a confusing message.  For any of you in the business, you know this is hard work…but so gratifying. It takes more than talent to grow a clientele and a successful business. Enjoy our tips that will help you go from aspiring to established.

1. Start building content on social media and a blog.
Even if you are still in the simply curious stages, start building online credibility with content.  When you are ready to launch your business, you will have pre-established your connection to the industy.  Credibility is important so your future clients feel like they can trust your abilities.

2. Find your trades people.
You will need access to multiple contractors, electricians, painters, and more.  Start building that list now by asking friends and family who they would suggest. Talk to your local building supplies store and ask them for references. Also, take the time to build relationships with them. I can’t tell you how many jobs I have scored over the years, that were referred by my painter or electrician.

3. Find Vendors.
When you begin, you may focus on retail shopping for your client. But as your business grows, you will want to acquire to the trade only and wholesale vendors. This will allow you to make more money and also provide your clients with unique resources. Subscribe to industry magazines like Furniture Today and Home Accents Today. If you have the opportunity attend a Trade Show like AmericasMart in Atlanta or Las Vegas Market.

4. Get Organized.
Face it…if you are a creative, there is a good chance that you are not very organized.  It is the nature of the beast. In the early years, I cheated myself out of money by losing receipts, not having an ordering and tracking system, and losing samples.  In today’s digital world, it is somewhat easier but there will still be a paper trail and samples that will need to be tracked.  Create a separate office area that doesn’t have to double as the dining room table, if possible.  Have places to store samples and use vinyl see through pouches to keep paint, fabric, and flooring samples for each client.  I actually placed them in a 3-ring binder alphabetically by client. 

 5. Remember, this is your business…but you work for them. 
Your job is to create beautiful rooms and if that was all…it would be so easy.  But you have to deal with people and that can be a challenge. You will have to adapt your conversation and presentation style to fit the client. Remember the old adage, God gave you 2 ears and 1 month, so listen twice as much as you talk. Often times our creative brains get in the way and the wheels start spinning.  In the process, we forget about that communication and connection with the client.  Really hear what they say and create a room that delights them…this isn’t about you. 

6.  Don’t be afraid to fire a client. 
Watch for red flags that could signal a tough client. Don’t let the seduction of being paid for a job get in the way of your peace of mind.