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Issue 80: May 2013
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On stage this month

To Set the Stage

Backstage with Debra

Imogen Brown Shines in Brisbane Real Estate

Your Fastest, Easiest Way to Get Unstuck

Hire a Photographer or DIY?

Jackie Walton Wins Contest

Hats off to 2 New Home Stagers Catherine Menard, Lucy Arruda

staging diva store

Did You Get Your Gift?

Birthday gift from Staging Diva

If you didn't get a birthday gift from me, click here to join my birthday list for free. I promise to send you a surprise on your day!

To Set the Stage

"Can you think of anything more permanently elating than to know you are on the right road at last?"

- Vernon Howard

Backstage with Debra

I can't believe I made it through my first "year" as an empty nester. I'm off to pick up my "bigger" girl from college. Now to learn how to deal with a teen who is used to not having a curfew anymore. Any tips are most welcome.

Last month I wrote about a client who took my home staging advice and sold in less than a week with 4 offers at $70,000 over asking. A couple of weeks later I was invited to apply for a host spot for a new HGTV show and my home staging client helped me shoot my demo video for it.

I don't know whether I'll get the host spot but I was thrilled when the casting director said my submission was "right on the money." Now it goes up the chain of command and we'll see what happens. Keeping my fingers crossed!

Have you heard about the 4 latest home staging jobs? They're in North Carolina, Massachusetts and California. If you're not getting job notifications, subscribe to Home Staging Business Report by filling in the big box on the home page.

I recently wrote about whether you're stuck with your home staging business name if you decide you don't like it, and what to do if you started with a sole proprietorship and want to switch. If you missed the story on my blog, check it out and see the comments from fellow stagers.

In this month's newsletter I share the staging of 2 model homes, the fastest and easiest way to get unstuck and open up the question of whether you need a professional photographer or you can DIY for your portfolio. You'll also meet 4 inspiring home stagers.

Please watch your inbox for details of my Mother's Day Madness Event coming your way.

Happy Spring and here's to your continued success,


Debra Gould, The Staging Diva®
President, Voice of Possibility™ Group Inc.

Imogen Brown Shines in Brisbane Real Estate

I'm thrilled with the success Staging Diva Graduate Imogen Brown has enjoyed this year. Her company Home Staging Brisbane has a gorgeous home staging portfolio so it's no wonder her reputation is shining so brightly in her local real estate market.

This month on Facebook she shared her news and these two photos of her recent work. She wrote, "Big week, two display homes, one vacant house and one office!"

Display home 1 Display home after staging

Photos: Imogen Brown, Home Staging Brisbane (AU)

I love the sense of order she's created in these 2 model homes. There's a rythmn in both these photos with the groups of three's. Plus, the art pulls in colors from other accessories. It all comes together beautifully.

Imogen is a member of Staging Diva Dialog— our monthly Group Coaching Calls. This lets me to watch her business progress and answer her questions every month. Dialog members share their progress at the start each conference call, which leads to detailed discussions and pointers to what's next for their marketing.

Imogen has been consistently active on Twitter, Facebook and Pinterest as well as her own blog. This social media activity drives traffic to her website and gains attention from the right people. For example, Imogen now has her own staging column on Australia's number 1 real estate site.

In another example, she tweeted congratulations to me after my column appeared on the Century 21 site. That lead to an invitation for her to write a blog post for a leading real estate/media consultant, who then syndicated it across 40 real estate offices.

At the time she said, there are two lessons from all of this: "You've got to love Twitter and just keep connecting with people and great things will happen!"

If you're not sure how to get the most out of your time on Twitter, or the whole idea just feels overwhelming, check out the Home Stager's Guide to Twitter. It is written for absolute beginners and also contains advanced strategies as you get more comfortable using it. Plus it will be on sale during the Mother's Day Madness Event starting May 2.

Home Stager Twitter Guide

No reason you can't have similar business success

Now before you start thinking, "oh it's different for Imogen," and imagining that you can't have similar success with your own home staging business, I want to share what Imogen wrote in a comment on my blog about a year ago. It demonstrates how far she's come since then:

"I've always loved real estate and home interiors, and staging is a perfect mix of the two. I've also got an advertising and business coaching background and owned my own business before, so when I look back I can see how I have joined the dots to where I am now."

"I started the Staging Diva Program 6 weeks after my Mum died suddenly. It was just the kick I needed. I was in a stop gap and tedious admin role at the time and it really made me evaluate what I was doing. I haven't been busy enough in my first year and I have thought 'what am I doing?' a couple of times but not enough to give up. Next year will be better and I'll just keep plugging away!"

Congratulations again Imogen Brown on all your success and having the courage to follow your dreams and find out where it might take you when you kept at it. That incredible talent of yours was certainly wasted sitting behind an office desk working for someone else.

About her recent projects, Imogen writes "I've actually amazed myself, I never thought I'd be able to do this. Have learned lots along the way and had fun too. Clients are happy and I'm happy."

> Related story 5 Tips for Home Stagers to get Staging Jobs

Your Fastest and Easiest Way to Get Unstuck

Staging Diva Dialog Coaching Call
Tuesday, May 14 - 7pm, Eastern (4pm Pacific)

Wouldn't you love to have an actual conversation with people who know exactly what it's like to be a home stager? I'm not talking about Facebook comments here, I mean a real two-way conversation!

On May 14, I'll be sitting down with a great mix of new and advanced Staging Diva Dialog members who are really supportive of each other. I hope you can join us.

We share our latest triumphs or challenges at the start of the conference call, and then all the ideas and tips flow from there.

This month's call will be unique because of the different questions members ask. Whether you're a total beginner or an advanced stager, you'll definitely learn something.

Peggy Wilcox (TX) said after our last call: "I wanted to let you know how much I am enjoying the Dialog calls. They are very helpful and pick me up when I am discouraged. Thanks so much for providing them."

Staging Diva Dialog Monthly Q & A Staging Business Calls

For beginner and established home stagers. You don't need to be our student.

May 14 - Save your spot now.

Leah Fritz (WI) who is in her 8th year as a home stager since taking the Staging Diva program says: "I don't understand how anyone could forge thru the un-chartered waters of the staging business without a seasoned support system to draw from. Thank you again Debra and I look forward to our next Staging Diva Dialog call."

> Join us this month + get the recording too

You're guaranteed to make $500 when you implement the ideas from a single session.

Hire a Photographer or DIY?

If you've been reading this newsletter for any length of time, you know I'm always coaching stagers to have the best home staging portfolio they can.

That's because there's no other single tool that can "boost or bust" your home staging business faster.

One of my students asked whether it's worth hiring a professional for the "after" shots. They would look better and it would save time because you wouldn't have to shoot, or edit, the photos yourself.

Perhaps you'd be surprised to learn I advised a more DIY approach. I gave the pros and cons as I see them, and this stirred up quite a debate over at Home Staging Business Report.

> I'd love to see if you agree and invite you to add your comments.

Display home after staging

Jackie Walton Wins "Stages of Success" Contest!

When we take the time to celebrate our large and small triumphs, we prove to our fearful self that we are capable of achieving our dreams. This provides the strength and motivation to keep moving forward.

That's why I created the Stages of Success™ Contest.

"Brag" about your success as a home stager on The Staging Diva Facebook Wall to acknowledge your achievements to yourself and others. You'll give our supportive community a chance to help celebrate your "Stages of Success" and inspire others at the same time!

Congratulations to this month's winner, Staging Diva Grad Jackie Walton of Welcome 2 Your New Home Staging LLC, Michigan:

"I had my first staging job from a lady in my networking group. She already bought her new house and had this one listed... no pressure right? A couple of days after staging she had an offer. She accepted and the home was sold! I love bringing help to others who are in need. Not sure if it's getting the house ready, or just seeing the expression on their face!"

Michigan home stager
Winning home stager Jackie Walton (Michigan).

Stages of Success

How You Can Win $25 in the May Contest

Simply post your success on The Staging Diva Facebook Wall. Perhaps you just landed your first project, were interviewed by the media, gave a presentation, or did a TV shoot. Maybe one of the homes you staged just sold, or you're marking the anniversary of starting your business.

These are all important milestones in your journey and I want to give you a place to celebrate with a group that will truly appreciate your experience and success. You don't have to be a Staging Diva Graduate to win.

Each month, we'll draw one name at random. The winner will receive a $25 coupon redeemable on any purchase in the Staging Diva Store of $25 or more. Post as many times as you like, as long as you only post the same news once.

> If you already have a success to celebrate, click here to post it to The Staging Diva Facebook Wall for your chance to win $25.

Hats Off To These New Home Stagers

When you're a Staging Diva Directory of Home Stagers member, it's easy for agents and home sellers to hire you. PLUS, members enjoy FREE project referrals, notification of guest speaking opportunities, media interviews, and quarterly coaching where I work on their business with them.

Join me this month in welcoming these new Staging Diva Grads. Check out their profiles and get inspired.

Ontario home staging

Catherine Menard Ontario

Groovy Chick Redesign and Home Staging

Oakville home staging

Lucy Arruda

Staging to List

Extra Benefits for
Profile Listings!

You can have a free brochure produced by Staging Diva for your company when you have a full year Profile Listing.

brochure sample front brochure sample back

Sample front & back of custom brochure

Plus, you'll get a download link on your Directory Profile Page so your customers can access your company brochure instantly!

Download Brochure link

Sample download button

Social Media Links!

You can add these Social Media icons to your Directory Profile and link them to your accounts on these sites:

Social Icons for Directory

Sample icons

Social Media links are a FREE perk with an annual commitment, or $75 on quarterly billing.

Be The Top
Directory Listing

When you're the first stager to join the Directory for your chosen locations, your listing will always come out on top in a Directory search, no matter how many people join after you.

If there are others listed above you for certain cities or neighborhoods, your rank will move up if any of them leaves the directory.

> How to get your own Profile Page

> How to get a Mini Listing

The sooner you join, the higher up on the list you are for your locations.

Plus you can choose up to 3 states/provinces and 10 cities, town, neighborhoods or counties to be listed in!

Certificates and Marketing for Staging Diva Grads

All Staging Diva Graduates receive personalized certificates plus free Grad Badge artwork for their marketing materials and websites.

Unlike other staging programs, Staging Diva Graduates DO NOT PAY AN ONGOING FEE to be "certified" or "accredited" after completing this program.

Once you've completed the 5-course training program, you'll be able to say "{fname} is a Graduate of the Staging Diva Home Staging Business Training Program" for as long as you like. We don't put a time limit on this like other companies!

Staging Diva Graduation Certificate

Do some research before enrolling in home staging training so you're sure what you're buying.

> How to know what you're getting.

Staging Diva Graduate Badge
> How to save up to $830 with a 5-course staging training package.

If you've been reading my blog or this newsletter for any length of time, you know I love writing articles about Staging Diva Students and Grads. This gives you much needed publicity and I don't charge you for it. All you have to do is share some details with me so I can write your story.

No other home staging training program consistently does this for its students. We have about 100 articles written and promoted so far, and it keeps growing.

> Share your staging or business story here so I can write about you.

About Staging Diva

Debra Gould has been a serial entrepreneur since 1989. She is president of Voice of Possibility Group Inc. with a mission of helping entrepreneurs create their ideal businesses and lifestyles.

An internationally recognized home staging expert, Debra created the Staging Diva Home Staging Business Training Program with 7,000 students in the U.S., Canada and 20 other countries. She is the author of 5 guides, offers a Directory of Home Stagers to help home sellers and agents locate stagers in their area and is frequently profiled in the media.

Direct inquiries to:

© 2013 Voice of Possibility Inc. All rights reserved. Content may not be duplicated without written permission.
® Staging Diva, Voice of Possibility and the Staging Diva logo are trademarks of Voice of Possibility Group Inc.