Additional Revenue Streams for Designers
Working as a professional in the design industry presents you with many different career options. Even once you’ve decided on which type of design professional you’d like to be, you have several exciting options for additional revenue streams within each specialization! These let you practice new skills, change up your routine, and supplement your income. For example, interior decorators might spend most of their time conducting their usual design process with clients. In the off season or during slower business periods, however, there are many things that interior decorators can do to continue earning money for their professional design skills above and beyond simply working with private clients. Here are some additional revenue streams for interior decorators!
Many professional interior decorators are paid for time spent presenting on their area of expertise in order to help other decorators and communicate within the industry about new trends, techniques, or information. Others are asked to speak at events like home and design shows in order to highlight the benefits of hiring a decorator to groups of potential clients. Guest speaking presents decorators and other design professionals with the opportunity to network with other people in their industry, as well as with people seeking their services. It also gives them the chance to set themselves on the map as experts in their field, as a good presentation will contribute positively to their reputation. Many guest speaking opportunities will be offered to more experienced professionals, but this isn’t to say that the input of beginning interior decorators is never sought after or valued. Because you have recently completed your training, you might be viewed as having a fresh outlook on the industry. Rather than hiring someone who’s been practicing the same techniques for years, some event coordinators might seek out new decorators to get an updated perspective on industry-related issues. If you conduct yourself professionally and display that you’re very knowledgeable in your area, you might be looked upon as qualified to speak at events despite being fresh on the scene!
Writing and publishing:
At international and local levels, there are many different magazines, websites, blogs, and information sources that design professionals can write for! Writing can be a great source of additional revenue, particularly during slower periods when you have more time to invest in developing a quality piece. Because you’re a working professional in your industry, you’re considered an expert, so your input might be valued by many different publications, particularly if your insight is unique and up to date and your writing is detailed and clear. Writing is a great additional revenue stream because it’s something that you can be very pro-active about! Particularly as a beginner in the industry, you might have to wait until things like guest speaking opportunities are presented to you. With writing, however, you can take action and contact different sources to inquire about publication opportunities. Seasoned professionals might be approached by magazines and websites for publications, but beginner interior decorators can still find extra income in writing by taking the first step and communicating actively with magazines and websites about writing opportunities.
Hosting seminars and workshops:
Like guest speaking opportunities, the chance to host an event is often given to more experienced professionals who have had the time to build a reputation. Even so, newer interior decorators and design professionals might still find themselves given the chance to host seminars or workshops in order to generate additional revenue. Perhaps this event is put on by the design company you’re working for and they want to give you a challenge and see you display your skills outside of the traditional designer-client structure? Maybe a local group of architects or contractors has organized a seminar for potential clients seeking information about renovating their homes, and they’d like an interior decorator at the event to present attendees with a well-rounded information package about home improvement? Maybe you are a free lance designer and you’d like to take the reins and coordinate with other design professionals in your area to organize a seminar for local clients in order to attract business and generate additional revenue for a number of interior decorators at once? Working with competitors like this can be beneficial for everyone if the seminar is organized as a team effort!
Many professionals in different industries will work on smaller independent consulting projects above and beyond their regular position with a company. Providing there are no conflicts with your contract and your method of gaining independent clients is ethical (i.e. you aren’t soliciting clients away from your company or colleagues), this is a great option for additional revenue for interior decorators. For some clients, getting the professional opinion of an interior decorator before they actually go through with any contract is an attractive option within the process of renovating their home. You might be approached to consult on a space that isn’t yet finished or built, and therefore isn’t ready for you to actually decorate, but you can still provide insight into what kind of decorative potential the space will have. Architects and design professionals with other areas of expertise might sub-contract you to help them determine the physical characteristics of a room so that their client’s decorative vision will be possible once the space is built. Even though you might not be fully conducting your regular interior decoration process from beginning to end, you are still providing insight and knowledge and you will therefore be paid for your expertise when you consult.
Although some opportunities for additional revenue might be presented to you, you should stay active about seeking them out yourself as well! Particularly as a beginning professional, taking on extra projects gives you more than just extra income; it’s also a chance to prove your skills in different contexts and build your reputation in other areas of your industry! Keep an eye out for new chances to develop additional revenue streams in many different areas.