One of the best ways to sell a landscape lighting job is through a nighttime demonstration.
Some designers prefer to lay out several areas with fixtures to create a virtual installation.
· This strategy allows the end user to receive a bird’s eye view of the completed job.
· This virtual system may often be left at a customer’s home for several nights and
then taken away.
· The theory is that the end user will miss the lighting system and will want it installed
The other strategy is the single vignette theory.
· This is a late afternoon visit with the customer in the to walk the property.
· The lighting designer and the customer can discuss the primary desired applications.
· As the sun goes down, the key areas are illuminated with specific lamps to show different beam angles and effects.
· This method provides an example of the lighting system performance in key areas.
Pros and Cons
There are pros and cons to each theory or method:
· With the virtual installation, the customer can get a sense of an installed system, and can discuss any potential changes.
o The concern: of theft of the designer’s equipment when leaving it with a customer for several evenings.
· With the single vignette method, the customer can visualize t certain key locations to be illuminated.
o The concern: In some cases, this process may not be enough to allow the customer to understand the entire design.
Customers who have a sense for design and can visualize the intent of the lighting system will lean towards a designer’s advice. They may only need the single vignette demonstration. Clients who are more visual may want the virtual installation method.
With both methods, it’s important to protect your intellectual property. Charging for a demonstration is not out of line. The demonstration charge can be deducted from the price of the purchased lighting system. Remember, customers with high expectations expect to pay to achieve their goals.