Develop a Repeatable Method for Getting Clients Promised Results
Many people are starting to choose “business owner” as a career path and are choosing to open up coaching, consulting and service businesses. It is now more important than ever for consultants to find a way to differentiate their coaching and consulting business so that prospects can understand the consultant’s unique experience and expertise.
No matter how you look at it, marketing is a system. There is a systematic way to come up with a predictable path for growing a business. While every business is different with its own unique systems, the process for getting there isn’t unique at all.
Marketing is a system
Many consultants believe that what they sell is a service and that service is personalized and new every time a new prospect or client comes on board. While you can certainly make a living off of this, I’ve found that most of our clients actually have the same needs. When I came to this realization, I realized I didn’t need to reinvent the wheel every time I got a new client, and instead documented a system, approach and deliverables to the point where I could deliver them as a suite of products…and you can too.
To be clear, this doesn’t mean there isn’t room for flexibility, but the reality is that 75-85% of what a client needs, depending on where they are in their business or with their growth objectives, really are the same.
Turn your services into packages
There are many benefits to packaging deliverables up as a product offering. To start, it makes it very easy to explain to your client what they’ll get. They get to see exactly what is going to be delivered to them and this transparency is great for building client rapport.
Packaging deliverables makes it much easier to sell as well because there is a definitive deliverable and price. The beauty of this is that as you deliver a similar package or product over and over again, you get better and more efficient at it. You can do things faster, which is where profit really ramps up.
Another advantage of a packaged program offering with a set price is that it allows you to rise above the hourly wage. When you sell your time you are capped, but when you sell a product or program, you are free to sell the value of the program without regard for the cost that goes into making it. As you become more effective at delivering your program you create the greatest path for getting paid on value delivered rather than the hours spent.
One of the things that kills a lot of consulting practices is that they’re constantly learning new things on the job for a client because they’re customizing everything. Not only is it very difficult to get good at that, but it’s also difficult to be efficient at it. Making your process up over and over again with each engagement, writing proposals and reacting to client demands is a very tiring business.
Process is the key
To compliment your product offerings you must surround them with documented systems, tools and processes. This includes processes for lead generation, lead conversion, evaluation, service delivery, and results reviews. By creating tools that allow you to communicate and deliver a result in a consistent manner, you will immediately rise above 90% of your competition.
Remember, consulting services are often hard to describe and even harder to understand. By thinking about your services more like products and defining them in tangible terms you will find that it is much easier for prospects and clients to visualize results and understand deliverables.
If you liked this post, check out our Guide to Building a Small Business Marketing Consulting Practice.