Design Your Client Connections with the 7-11-4 Formula

Design Your Client Connections with the 7-11-4 Formula

Dive into a new way of connecting with your audience, where every piece of content, every interaction, and every presence paints a part of a larger picture. The 7-11-4 formula isn't just about numbers; it's about creating an immersive experience that invites people into the stories behind your designs.

What Does This 7-11-4 Formula Mean For Us As Interior Designers?

Picture this not as a set of cold numbers, but as a plan for drawing your audience into the world you create with every project.

This rule is developed by Google and is a unique approach on how potential clients consider before buying or taking action.

It emphasizes that, on average, a buyer needs around 7 hours of interaction, spanning across 11 different touchpoints and in 4 distinct locations, before making a purchasing decision. I first read about it in the book Oversubscribed by Daniel Priestley.


Because before they spend a lot of money they want to know whether they feel good about you. They are looking for trust, familiarity, knowledge and an overall good feeling.

interior design how or why

How That Relates To Us Interior Designer?

7 Hours of Immersion: Imagine your audience spending seven hours exploring the details of your work. This is about crafting content that engages so that people are naturally drawn to spend time with your designs, understanding your vision and philosophy. We'll give you some examples below.

11 Moments of Encounter: In your design process, every choice builds upon the last to create something unique. In the world of building a connection with a potential client, think of these 11 touchpoints as those moments where potential clients come across your work. Each one adding a layer of depth and context to their understanding of who you are as a designer.

4 Spaces of Expression: Just as our designs mostly covers multiple rooms, these four 'spaces' are where you share your voice and your work. Whether it’s through your own website, Instagram, an online showcase, or a publication, each space is a gallery curated by you for others to experience and connect with your designs.

In short, this approach is about sharing your creative journey in a way that pulls clients closer to your world, showcasing not just the final design but the passion and process behind it.

Deepening Engagement with 7 Hours of Content

Creating 7 hours of engaging content can seem daunting, but it’s about sharing your journey and passion for design in various forms. And it doesn't have to be ready tomorrow.

Start with what you feel comfortable with. For instance, narrate the transformation of spaces in blog posts, create video tours of your projects, or share design tips in short, engaging clips.

Each piece of content is a chapter in your story, inviting potential clients to spend time in your creative world. Overcoming hesitation begins with embracing your unique voice and realizing that your insights and experiences are valuable to your audience.

To give you an example: earlier this week Marc was out in Rotterdam with a camera, visiting a client and making some magical video shots of a tour through an apartment we designed. Just to give our design clients a sneak peek of what's going on behind the scenes of our projects. And for Institute of Interior Impact there is hours and hours of free material for you to listen to.

Expanding Reach with 11 Touchpoints

Eleven touchpoints are your opportunities to touch the hearts and minds of your audience across different platforms. Think beyond traditional social media posts to podcasts discussing design trends, informative webinars, and engaging interviews.

If the idea of creating so many touchpoints feels overwhelming, remember, collaboration can amplify your efforts. Guest blogging, co-hosting a webinar, or even participating in community discussions can count towards your touchpoints, making your presence felt in a cohesive yet diverse way.

Callie van der Merwe expands his reach towards his audience very well. He is the co-founder of Design Partnership Australia, a large interior design agency in Sydney. Callie knows his audience is on LinkedIn, so with his weekly articles he writes about all the aspects of interior design, showing his in-depth knowledge of our profession, while also educating his prospects. This way he becomes known for his expertise.

Watch Marc's interview with Callie

Design Your Visibility Across 4 Locations

Broadening your presence to four locations means being where your audience is, online and offline. This could be your website, social media platforms, email newsletters, and even Facebook Groups where potential home buyers meet.

Offline you could go to network events, trade shows (try working together), write a column in a magazine your client might read, etc. Your goal is to make you (your brand) more accessible, inviting potential clients to explore your world from various angles.

The First Next Step For You As An Interior Designer

Now that we've explored the layers of the 7-11-4 formula and how it can transform your approach to connecting with potential clients, it's time to take that first step towards expanding your design visibility.

Begin with what you're most passionate about. 

Maybe it's sharing a recent project transformation through a blog post or capturing the essence of your design philosophy in a short video.

Remember, every piece of content you create is an invitation into your world of design.

👉 Start small, focus on one content form, and gradually expand your touchpoints and locations. Your journey of engaging clients more deeply starts with this first step. Let your unique voice and vision lead the way.

Sven van Buuren (1980), interior architect, founder of Institute of Interior Impact and owner of the Beyond Iinterior Design LinkedIn Group. Sven has a pleasant mix of rationality versus seeing and naming. He likes to make rigorous choices. Not going for obvious, but the consequences are always positive. For Sven, 'Living On Your Own Terms' means shaping his own freedom to be able to live his dreams. With his optimism and loyalty, he likes to gather people around him who have something to add. To his life, but especially to the lives of each other.
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