Three Tips to Start a Consulting Business, part 1
I recently read an article titled Three Tips to Start a Consulting Business written by Jennifer Merritt from Entrepreneur.com. As the title denotes, the author shares three great tips to consider when considering to start your own consulting business. I have taken the liberty to share some additional suggestions you may benefit from.
1. Establish your reputation before striking out on your own
Before starting your own consulting business I advise you establish yourself as a knowledgeable, trusted, reputable professional in your field. It goes without saying that consumers are more informed than ever, and as such, potential clients should understand the value you may provide. Here are some tips:
Join a Professional Associations and participate
One way to establish a positive reputation is to join a professional association within your industry and participate in networking events. Professional Associations are made up of professionals within the industry and often meet to discuss best business practices. I have the pleasure of belonging to several organizations, such as the National Property Management Association (NPMA). As a member of the NPMA I benefit from educational opportunities, reduced discounts on job aids, certification, and access to other professionals willing to assist me with any questions or concerns I may have. Joining a professional association will allow you the opportunity to contribute to the industry through networking opportunities, and become recognized as an industry leader.
Join Local Communities
Another way to establish a positive reputation is to join local business owners network in your community. Your town, city and/or state often offers networking opportunities and groups where professionals network with other like-minded individuals. Meetups or LinkedIn Groups are a great way to connect with others. Such networking opportunities allow for you to identify complementary products and services you may lend your services to.
Offer content through your own website
A third tool for establishing a reputation before striking out on your own is building a professional website. You may hire someone to build you a site, or create one yourself. There are plenty how-to tutorials online, and books available to help walk you through the steps. Here are some additional benefits to building your website:
- Drive traffic to your site, which may lead to new clients
- Build a brand
- Offer digital media such as how-to’s, tutorials and eBooks
- Offer online courses, webinars and/or seminars
- Provide peer and client testimonials
Establishing a positive professional reputation is a key step to starting a successful consulting business. Joining professional organizations, networking through your local community, and offering content are all ways to stand out from the competition and be recognized for your know-how.
Stay tuned for my insight on tips two and three coming up next (2- Partner with another firm while building your business. 3- Differentiate your Services)
Have comments, questions or tips to offer? Comment below or contact me through social media. The links are listed below.