May 26, 2016, Dolly Oberoi, CEO, C2 Technologies
Being a successful trusted partner and consultant offers a wide range of opportunities. You must wear many hats from the very beginning and invest a great deal of time, effort, and dedication to reap the rewards. The good news is that there are 5 tips that can help you achieve success in the long-term
- Identify your niche.
Every professional has unique talents, strengths, and abilities. To be a successful consultant you must identify what these traits are and then figure out how you can carve out a niche, or fit into an existing one.
- You must be able to determine how your skills and knowledge translate into solutions.
- Clients are looking for consultants who can provide specialized services, such as identifying gaps in their current program or analyzing their Big Data to create effective eLearning activities or connecting the dots for them with the latest trends in industry and technologies
- You have to be aware of what you bring to the table and how you can meet their needs.
- Constantly research, read and stay abreast of trends, innovations and issues impacting your clients.
- Identify any gaps in the market and see if your talents can fill them, or do some research to figure out which niches experience continual success.
- Research the competition.
- Other consultants/companies can reveal a great deal about the industry, where it’s headed, and where you fit into the big picture.
- Compile a list of the top 5 competitors in the industry, preferably those who are in your niche.
- Learn as much as possible about the companies – how many staff members they employ, what services they provide, their pricing structure, and their marketing strategy.
- Carefully examine all of the testimonials, ratings, and client reviews to determine their strengths and weaknesses. For example, if a number of reviewers are mentioning their high price point, then you may want to take this into consideration when creating your own fee structure.
- Build a rapport with your client base.
- Building a rapport with clients is one of the most important aspects of becoming a consultant.
- A successful consultant must work closely with clients, which requires a certain degree of trust, respect, and credibility.
- You must work hard to build a solid reputation that attracts new clientele and keeps existing clients loyal.
- Reach out to them on a regular basis in-person and always return their messages or emails in a timely manner.
- Meet with them frequently, talk to them and learn about their environment, challenges and opportunities.
- Share information about the industry and other interesting items with them.
- Stay on top of your game – always communicate and know what’s happening on your projects, client issues, political landscape, etc.
- Become active on social media pageswhere clients can learn about new services, promotions, and any events that you are hosting or speaking at.
- Promote your services EVERY DAY. Marketing your company’s services is almost a full-time job.
- Set aside time each day, and promote your company on social media sites, forums, blogs, and any other online platforms that can help you build the buzz.
- Remember that it’s all give and take. For example, sharing tips with your LinkedIn or Twitter followers may take time, but it will help you build your brand image.
Follow these tips to forge your path to success and be the best consultant you can be. It may require a significant amount of trial and error, and perseverance, but being able to achieve your goals on your own terms is well worth it in the end.