Transform your mood board into a concept board to boost communication with clients.
These are my thoughts on creating the perfect mood board.
To create an outstanding mood board it takes time, as we need to source great quality pictures that show our idea. Sometimes we use abstract images that are not a final product and it is quite often that a client doesn’t really understand the end result and the purpose we are trying to achieve. As soon as I realised that a concept board is more efficient with my clients, I immediately moved to another level of communication with my customers.
Having a potential client, you would need to meet or have an initial call with them, where you can learn everything about their project and needs. I would recommend putting together a concept board straight after your meeting before a client has even decided to hire you and here is a reason why. From the client’s perspective, it shows that you like their project and you are willing to work on it. They can see that you are a professional with good presentation skills, that you can deliver your ideas, doing this you are increasing your chance to seal the deal with them as after you showed a concept board they have already started to visualise their future interior.
I’ve learned this type of presentation is important especially when you are working with people from non-creative fields. Not everyone can visualise interiors, you should have a 3dimencial thinking, so showing them inspiration, examples and colours in a certain direction will ease your work. Another reason why a concept board is an efficient tool is because they cut down on revisions as it will immediately help you to understand what your client gravitates towards. And we all know how it is painful to keep changing a design if you are not on the same page with your client.
So, what is a perfect mood board or a concept board?
What you can see below is a mood board, it definitely sets a mood, you can see the colours and overall atmosphere. But when a client is looking at this, they probably are not yet sure how these colours and abstract pictures are going to build their interior. I found that mood boards are giving a sense of colour and a little bit of style, not much more. So, I’d started looking for a solution.
What a perfect concept board will contain?
1. A full-colour scheme or a couple of options that are all in the same tone palette. You can include a certain brand of paint if needed.
*Ask your client what colours they want to use.
2. An overall idea with examples of different rooms. Usually, I would split the rooms.
*Ask your clients their style preferences, ask them to bring some pictures of interiors they love for your initial meeting/video call.
3. An inspiration piece, something that inspired you. It can be an art object, beautiful organic piece that will help you to create a room layout or anything that is a key to this project.
*Do your clients have a hobby/passion, family history. Find a special thing about them that will help you to make an interior meaningful.
4. Make sure you show what is the accent in this interior. Will it be art, colours, textile, furniture or a mural?
*When talking to clients ask them if they have a favourite piece in their current home or if they want to bring something special into a new interior. It can be anything from extravagant lighting to unusual floor mosaic.
5. It contains the most important or interesting pieces of furniture.
*Ask your clients if they have been thinking about furniture and brands they would want to use in their interior. If not, overall understanding of their style preferences will help you to select right pieces.
6. A note of what you are trying to achieve. You will put here information on what this interior is going to look like, what materials, details and décor will help you to get there.
*Listen carefully to what your clients want to get in the end, a peaceful atmosphere, bright interior, colourful oasis?
Before you meet your clients make a questionnaire around the bullets described above, so you can be sure that you have all necessary information to start working on a concept board.
How your new way of presenting can change your life?
As I mentioned above, as soon as you start using a detailed concept board, the amount of revisions and meetings will cut in half. Being able to show your client what you have in your mind before even started working on a project can be a crucial part of your design process and can help you to get more clients. You can use a concept board as a jump off point for every piece of collateral you will design for them.
Not only can will it give them a better understanding of what their design will be, it will give you a better sense of direction too. You give your client an opportunity to give feedback straight away and tell you where exactly you understood them and what they want to change. If you thought that when they said – natural materials, you interpreted it as a clay-like plaster on the walls, but it meant natural stone and wood. It can save you plenty of time, having early feedback on your ideas.
If you haven’t yet tried to implement this into your client process, I challenge you to give it a go on your next project. It changed my process and I haven't looked back.
If you would like to get free mood board templates I used in this post click here.