Knockout your competition with the LCC (Low Commitment Consultation)

Pictured: Takbir Fatima, Director of DesignAware based in Hyderabad currently with a virtual studio in Dubai

Key point: When presenting a client with your LCC, make sure that the service you offer cannot be compared with architects offering free advice. List what you do and how each thing solves problems and reduces risk.

Example: Takbir Fatima is Director of DesignAware based in Hyderabad currently with a virtual studio in Dubai. A prospective client had asked Takbir for a facade renovation of an old school building just before the pandemic. She met with the client in person and agreed to a free site visit. This was before she was using the LCC method. Takbir didn’t get to visit the site before the lockdown. And the project didn’t materialize. Then, in October, they contacted Takbir again for a new school project and she asked them to fill out the Project Form and schedule an Ask The Expert call. During the meeting, she pitched the LCC method and had the client answer the Confidence Checklist.

The clients were super impressed because they said the industry is very disorganized and they liked Takbir’s systematic approach. Though the LCC is not a method commonly being used by other architects, it seemed acceptable to them and they decided to select a better site than the one they had originally chosen. For a follow-up, Takbir sent the prospective client the 9-word ‘win-back’ email and the client responded immediately saying they've decided to start in June because of uncertainty due to the pandemic. She suggested they get started on the LCC because it is not affected by the pandemic and will help them prepare well in advance.

Connecting the dots: Your clients need to pay for the LCC to get early research done properly or else ‘good luck' later when making mistakes could get expensive. Clients can pay a small amount now to do a thorough analysis and reduce their risk or pay nothing now but risk paying a lot more later if something was not foreseen in the design or construction.

Benefits of the LCC: You get paid for pre-design research. Clients get your expert advice so that they can make more informed decisions. Find out more about how you can communicate your value to clients by implementing my special LCC strategy. When Adrian Ramsay hosted me on the TALKdesign podcast, we discussed the origin of the LCC and how designers can personalize this offer for their firms to win better projects (and likewise, attract clients who actually value the work they do). When Adrian Ramsay hosted me on the TALKdesign podcast, we discussed the origin of the LCC and how designers can personalize this offer for their firms to win better projects (and likewise, attract clients who actually value the work they do).

Listen to our conversation, and read more here: https://archmarketing.org/genius-lcc-talkdesign-richard-petrie-adrian-ramsay/

Learn about the AMI SIX+MAPS program and connect with members in the Architect Marketing Institute Facebook group. Request to join at archmarketing.org/facebook.

Discover SIX member Takbir Fatima's journey of “Exploration, Awareness, and Storytelling through Design.” Read our Q&A with Takbir as part of the “Firm of Her Own” series where we ask her: Is there a ‘feel’ that is common to all your built designs? How do you communicate this in your marketing?

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