So, you have all the skills in place that you think you need to make it as a consultant. But what do you do now? In an ideal world, you will have a flood of customers clamouring for your business. But, of course, in real life this is unlikely, to say the least.
When you are just starting out it can be very hard to find customers: you don’t have the experience or the foothold in the market to live off recommendations. So, if you are just starting in your consultancy business, here’s some ideas to get you on your way.
Have a look around in your local area to find businesses that compliment your own. Approach those business owners that are in a similar situation to your own – one-man bands or very small companies.
Meet them and talk through what you do and see if you can come to a happy medium. Let’s say you are a marketing consultant. Perhaps a copywriter could provide you with the words to help your customer’s website convert better. Maybe the copywriter struggles to get clients without an overall marketing strategy.
There are many lines of business that intertwine without damaging your market share, so investigate all of them. Even two or three different partnerships can lead to regular opportunities, without even having to do anything from your own back. It’s a great way to get started.
Search engine optimization is essential to any business because without it, you just won’t get found. Look at companies with a solid reputation that can guarantee you results. Industry specialists WME give some great advice on choosing an SEO company. They state that finding a firm who understands what you do is the only way to establish what will work. So, make sure that you have an excellent relationship with any SEO firm – or any other outsourced company – to give you the best results.
Join Local Business Groups
If there are local business meet ups, we recommend joining up and going to them. If you are a sole trader or one-man band, it’s a great way of meeting other businesses and finding out what is going on in your locale.
Even if you don’t get much business from these events, they are worth doing. They will help you get your elevator pitch down to a tee and get you confident with talking about what it is that you do. They will also give you some ideas on the areas you should target to expand your business. If there are common themes or problems that regularly occur with other companies, there is a good chance they happen elsewhere, too. And everything you hear could end up being a unique selling point – so always keep notes!
Setting out on your own as a consultant can be difficult But if you can get the word out quickly, you should be able to get a foothold in your area. Be brave, and be consistent with everything you do, and everything should work out for you.