When you’re in the middle of starting a consulting business, it might feel very difficult. All the tasks, all the legal stuff, marketing etc. Should you start a website? When should you start looking for clients? And most importantly, where?
I’m not saying it’s a piece of cake. You definitely have to work on it. And sometimes the tasks juts look insurmountable.
But there is only one trick to succeed with your new consulting business. And that is just doing it. One step at a time, starting today, and you’ll thank yourself a year or two from now that you haven’t stopped.
Apply these 8 easy steps and start collecting money from your consulting services fast. Pay extra attention to #3, and watch your new consulting business grow.
If you want to start a successful consulting business in 2017 or 2018, the very first thing you need is to decide what niche you want to operate in. I find for most people this is very difficult, partly because it gets very hard to think out of the box when it comes to start our own business.
In the 21st century you don’t necessarily want to operate in your area of previous studies, so you might opt for a completely new area. What’s more important is that you have some experience in your new consulting field, and there must be a demand for it.
There are basically two legal aspects of starting a consulting business that you should address right at the beginning.
You should get up to this step very quickly, finishing the first two steps. This is the essence of why you’re doing it after all. Start getting clients right from the very beginning.
A few ideas how to get new clients as a startup consulting business:
Don’t worry about being underpaid or getting crappy clients at the beginning. You just need to start your company and getting some cash to keep it alive. Doing what your dream is, finding you ideal clients will come later.
These are the two main reasons why you should start getting clients from day one:
The most important asset of a consultant is their credibility. If people believe you can help them, they’ll hire you or they will buy your products. If they don’t believe you can help them, you can do whatever you want building your consulting business, you won’t make real money.
The most powerful tools to build up your credibility as a consultant are:
There is an old saying in internet marketing:
The money is in the list
And you don’t have to be an internet marketer to understand the importance of this sentence. The list is your mailing list. All the people who provided you with their email addresses and actually want to get updates and information from you. And these are the very people you can be in direct communication with.
This might look useless at the beginning. When you only have 10-15 subscribers, you don’t really understand why you have to do all this. But believe me, everyone with a big list to sell to started with 0 subscribers once.
Here are a few tips how you can do this. Please note that regulations vary by country and not all methods might be legal where you reside.
When starting a consulting business, chances are you know more in theory than in practice. This is OK at the beginning, and don’t let this stop you from starting a consulting business.
But to persevere in the long term, you need to have a strong practical knowledge, and you need to be able to apply this knowledge to your customers’ business or life.
By this time you must have some concept about what’s working and what’s not. Time to develop products and/or services based on customer and subscriber feedback.
Customer feedback is the most valuable market research. Use all the information and experience you’ve gathered so far.
There are 3 very useful questions you can ask yourself at this stage that can help you develop the product that you need to really put your consulting business on course. The answer for the first question you have to figure it out for yourself, but you can ask the second one from people who fall into the category of your ideal customer. The third one you’re better off guessing at this stage, as if you ask someone about how much they would pay for something, you can be sure you won’t get the right answer.
You want to build and start a consulting business after all, then don’t forget to operate like a real business. This doesn’t necessarily mean incorporating or renting a large office.
Operating like a business can be broken down to the following steps:
I hope I could give you some basic insight on how to start a consulting business. But in the end of the day it all comes down to action. Did you do today what you could have done, or just found another reason to procrastinate?
So find where you left off last time with starting your consulting business, and just simply do the next step. You’ll thank this to yourself later!