The Ultimate Guide to Starting and Building Your Consulting Business
Strategies, Tactics, and Tools to
Help You Build a Thriving Consulting Business
Scaling Your Consulting Business: Productizing and Globalizing
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One of the greatest benefits of solo consulting is the opportunity to make high six- or seven-figure incomes and have more free time by productizing your consulting services. Packaging and productizing your consulting services gives you a chance to work when you want, where you want, and with whom you want.
Productizing Your Expertise Gives You
Greater Security, Independence, and Income
Working Remotely Allows You to Travel Internationally
and Serve Clients from Anywhere in the World
If you build your consulting business so your clients depend solely upon your onsite or "in seat" work, then you have severly limited yourself. You can never gain independence, flexibility, and higher income. You cannot scale your consulting and be independent if you do not know how to productize your knowledge and services.
Older consulting business models depend upon you working in your business and at your client. You are trading personal hours for income. The old model forces you to work longer hours to make more income. It also limits your scope and outreach. This drives you to work longer hours and limits how many people and businesses you can impact.
New consulting models, especially in the age of Working from Home, do not depend on "butt in seat hours." When you know how you can develop services and content one time, then leverage them into different products available through different channels. You can deliver your consulting services virtually around the world.
Creating Multiple Streams of Consulting Income
Productizing your consulting services creates multiple streams of income. By turning your consulting services into products you can deliver your expertise through different channels, at different price points, to different levels of clients, at different times, worldwide. And, all of them magnify your brand and consulting revenue.
Consulting’s old business model tied consulting revenue to hours.
If there are no hours, there is no income.
The business of consulting is rapidly changing. In the past, independent consultants worked one-to-one or with a small group. Now independent consultants can deliver their services over the internet at any time, in multiple formats, to any location, and through multiple channels.
New consulting models using productized consulting with online delivery
to serve more clients with less effort while producing high six- and seven-figure incomes.
Productizing your consulting is perfect for delivering your consulting over the internet. You can leverage and magnify your expertise by reaching clients in your niche around the world.
Consultants who scale up their business by productizing their services and distributing through multiple channels have a significant advantage over their competitors in building their brand and their income.
Old Consulting Delivery Methods are Changing
There are many problems with the old model of consulting.
With the old model of consulting, your reach, your brand strength, and your total revenue were limited. If you weren’t hustling with your marketing and hustling at a client’s site, then you weren’t earning, and your business could slide back.
Even as a great, in-demand consultant, the old model causes problems. There is only so much of you to go around. Most clients want to work directly with you. You can hire junior consultants, you can certify others, but there are still limits.
A few of the problems with the old consulting model are,
The only way to make more income is to work more hours, but this has problems. It’s exhausting and burns you out. To increase your income, you must increase your fees, and that has limits. And finally, you can’t scale your contribution, whether it is delivering sustainable solutions or spreading a new technology.
Access is limited by your travel or telephone availability. By offering packaged consulting over the internet you can deliver consulting to any geographic location at any time.
Not every client wants or can afford to have you as their consultant. You need ways to give value to clients at different levels.
Rapidly Changing Competition
Consulting is changing as rapidly as the internet is expanding. You need to stay current with new means of communication, networking, and service.
New consulting models offer packaged and productized consulting delivered through multiple internet channels. Using the new models of consulting you can deliver your offerings to different client profiles, at different price points, with different learning styles, and not have to be at the client’s site. In most cases you can scale by delivering your offerings to multiple clients at the same time.
Leveraging the Massive Changes in Consulting
Consulting is a relatively new business, starting in the early 1900s, it grew slowly until exploding in the 1960s and shooting upwards. Until recently, consulting was a business where large consulting firms served large clients, and one-person or small consulting firms served small and mid-size clients in a local area. Both large and small consulting firms used a business model where work was face-to-face with executives and managers.
The world of consulting is rapidly changing. Even solo independent consultants can’t ignore the changes. In fact, solo consultants can use the change to their advantage.
Five forces are driving the massive changes in consulting,
These changes give agile consultants using the new model an advantage over consultants using the old model. In the past, consultants traded their work for income. The old consulting model demanded younger people, high energy, and long exhausting hours.
With the new models of consulting, you can deliver your value as products or services whether you are physically available or not and through multiple channels. You can connect with niche clients anywhere in the world. With the new business models, independent consultants can deliver value and earn recurring revenue while dining aboard a Viking Cruise down the Rhine River.
Consulting Online Creates More Opportunity
The COVID-19 pandemic has accelerated the business world’s move to working remotely and to digital transformation in all industries. While this change was shocking and rapid, large corporations with web-enabled employees found productivity increased. Many of these large corporations in the US are closing their large headquarters and satellite offices and dispersing their workforce.
This shift toward Work from Home and the economic impact has pushed large consulting firms to follow their standard approach to recessions, lay-off junior consultants. Large firms depended upon pushing junior consultants into client offices and billing for butt-in-seat time. They increase billings by increasing brand strength and butts-in-seats.
As an independent consultant you can be more agile than large firms. As an independent, you can,
You can take advantage of your narrow niche, global marketplace and unique positioning to market and deliver your consulting services over the internet just as well as a large firm. You can use,
While terrible, the pandemic has accelerated opportunities and forced us to evolve faster.
Creating Multiple Assets from a Single Service Offering
Smart consultants leverage their value by turning a single consulting service into multiple assets delivered through multiple channels.
Smart consultants build recurring income faster by
leveraging one asset into multiple products.
As an independent consultant, you can turn one asset into many products or services. All it takes is knowing how to run a few software applications or outsourcing production to freelancers.
As an example, imagine that you like to speak to industry groups. Your preferred method of working is speaking. From your speech and slides you could use the following workflow to create multiple products.
You can leverage your speech into many other products. For example,
And all of that came from one-hour speeches and the QA session that followed. Imagine what you could do with content from four or five speeches.
No matter which media is your best, there are always ways to leverage your workflow and create multiple products from a single offering.
Turning Your Consulting Offerings into Products
If you have more time than money you can learn the skills and repurpose your content by yourself. The tools for some production, like screen capture video or publishing Kindle books, are free or relatively low cost. There are many training programs on YouTube, but the time will take you away from marketing your consulting.
Another alternative is to invest in using freelancers to repurpose your content faster and with higher quality. Sites such as Fiverr, Freelancer, and Upworks have freelancers for hire for projects such as graphic design, editing, and book layout.
Many consulting offerings can create multiple streams of recurring revenue when it is repurposed as,