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Behind the LAUNCH Summit: Sales with expert John Livesay
Apr 29, 2016

Selling interior design is all about telling the right story, says funding strategist and sales consultant John Livesay, who will deliver “Selling Design: Pitching Clients and Closing Deals” at Editor at Large’s inaugural LAUNCH Summit in Los Angeles next week, including a “mini version of what makes a good sales presentation.” 


John Livesay

Effective sales skills aren’t necessarily at the forefront of a designer’s creative mind. “The problem we’re solving is most interior designs don’t know how to sell themselves or feel comfortable selling themselves,” says Livesay. “In today’s competitive market, you have to stand out by saying something; going from being invisible to being irresistible.” He adds, “The best way to sell yourself is to be yourself.”

In his consulting practice, Livesay addresses storytelling problems. Working with clients across a range of disciplines, his focus with designers in particular is on pitch development, boosting confidence and networking skills. (One piece of advice: For those with little public speaking experience, he recommends joining Toastmasters.)

Part of the confusion designers encounter is identifying what’s for sale. Livesay points out that designers and consumers may have differing ideas. “Designers think people buy their designs, when in fact, people buy the designer’s ability to connect and understand them. They need to trust and like the designer before they hire them. Most designers don’t know how to sell themselves without being pushy. I teach them how to be storytellers, which emotionally engages clients to want to hire them.”

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