4 Things Successful Consultants Can Do to Diversify and Make More Money

For many years of my nonprofit consulting practice, I lived a “feast or famine” lifestyle. Have you been there and done that as well? Then you know exactly how it feels to be snowed under with so many deadlines that you can hardly see straight OR you’re desperately cold calling every agency in town hoping they need what you have to sell. And – you’re willing to offer your services at a deeply discounted rate if they’ll just pay you something.

In 2009, after a long-term contract with a nonprofit that I dearly loved ended because the new board president felt that my job could easily be absorbed by the executive assistant (I know, right?!), I knew that I had to rethink my consulting strategy. I had become too self-reliant on just one revenue stream and I never knew where my next client was coming from.

In 2010 I launched my first website. I treated it not as just an “online brochure” but one built to make money for me in addition to my consulting jobs. Pretty soon, I was able to ditch the “done for you” service model of my consulting practice and now run the business coaching others how to do the work they were paying me to do instead of me doing it for them.

This model works so much better because it eliminates the income ceiling of trading dollars for hours, I can serve many more clients and I have much more freedom. This is considered more of a coaching model of doing business.

Want to turn your present model of consulting around on its head and make money a new, much more fun way? Here are four tips to help you make that transition:

Get clear on what it is you can do for people – Get clear on who you want to work with and what you want your client to have as a result of your coaching. Spend some time thinking about what it is you enjoy doing for people and the result that you always want them to come away with.

Instead of you trying to find clients to do a service for, you’re now concentrating on finding clients that instead want you to teach them what you know so they can do the job themselves.

Build a community – Find others that are wanting to learn what you know and build your own following to always have someone to market to. I continue to do this by offering something of value to my potential clients and marketing that through social media channels, blog posts, forum postings and articles. In exchange for them getting this valuable information I had to offer, I only asked for their name and email address on my website. This quickly built my list. It also gave me permission to market my coaching services.

Keep in touch – So, if you have a list of potential clients then the next step is for you to keep in touch with them. Continue to offer good information through a newsletter or the sharing of your blog posts. Show your community that you care about them.

Consistently make offers to your list - While all the while being of value to your community, you’ll also make offers. Instead of offering “done for you” services though you’ll be offering some sort of coaching package where instead of you doing the work for someone, you’re now training them how to do the work for themselves. You’re empowering them to do what you already know how to do.

What I just shared is really just the tip of the iceberg – so much to teach you, young grasshopper! In the resource box, you’ll find how to find out more and receive much more information. I hope that you’ll seriously consider a new way of doing business.