The jack of all trades is a master of none.
Being a specialist in one area can be far more lucrative than being average across various things. So all over the world, companies are turning to experts in specific industries to get specialized advice.
Enter the industry of six-figure consulting businesses.
Regardless of what industry you currently work in, individuals who dared to think outside the box have taken advantage of their vast experience in a particular field and turned it into a lucrative business.
The fantastic thing about being a consultant is that you get to pick and choose what you want to do. Say there are aspects of your job that you excel at and enjoy doing, but there are also parts that you don’t enjoy doing. While you are employed, you don’t have a say in what you do since your contract usually stipulates that you do as you’re told.
Even if it doesn’t say so, it’s generally expected of you.
Instead, realize your true potential. Ditch your 9 to 5, and get paid several times more than what you currently receive for things you already do.
Here is what you must do to make sure you become successful in starting a consulting business.
4 steps to run a successful consulting business
1. Learn your niche
Despite your years of knowledge in your field, it is almost always tied to the current company you work with. So first, you need to do more in-depth research of pain points across the board in your industry. Then, use your knowledge to solve these problems. Generic information is of no use to a consultant – the more specific the expertise, the better.
It will be beneficial when you jump on calls or meet face-to-face with potential clients. Using your in-depth knowledge, you can identify their problem and impress them with an actionable plan to solve their pain point.
It also means you should never stop learning about your industry. You will no longer have a boss or manager on your back, as you are your own boss now. That responsibility now rests solely on your shoulders, and it will dictate if a company chooses to hire you or not.
2. Work on your sales pitch
If this isn’t your area of expertise, hiring an external consultant to help you with this will be well worth it (see how essential consultants are?).
Your email or phone pitch needs to clearly describe your skills and credentials, what makes you an expert in this industry, and how potential clients will benefit from working with you. Once you find a winning pitch, you can use that for years to come and only update it with your most relevant experience.
Along with the pitch, work on your marketing. It is how potential clients will discover you and understand out what you are about.
3. Focus on automation and repeatability
As your client list grows, you will no longer have time to do menial tasks such as onboarding new clients, creating new invoices for each project, following up with clients to ensure you get paid, tracking daily expenses, or even monitoring the progress of each task.
This is where you need to learn to optimize your workflow and find ways to automate it. A good project management tool, a CRM, or a personal finance tool are investments you will need to make to ensure you have time to take on more clients and increase your revenue to make this business worth your time.
4. Learn to say no to bad clients
When you start, you may need to work with every single client that comes your way. At the genesis of your business, this might be necessary.
However, as you get more work, you need to differentiate between good and bad clients. Learn what you want to do and what you don’t want to waste time doing. It is your business, so you get to decide what you spend your time on.
Take care of your mental health and schedule your work around your lifestyle and not the other way around.
Now, you can be a consultant in almost any field. So, we’ve gone ahead and put together a list of consulting businesses that have been proven to generate six figures yearly to show you the possibilities out there. So, without further ado, here they are.
3 industries to earn 6 figures as a Consultant
In a nutshell, a legal consultant helps businesses by providing legal advice. You need the same education and training as a lawyer, but you do not participate in court proceedings.
It goes without saying, but you need to be well versed in the law as you will be consulted on compliance and other legal issues. For example, you will be required to help draft legal documents such as contracts and agreements. In some cases, you may also need to assist in investigations.
Although legal consultants and lawyers have very similar professions, a legal consultant doesn’t have the responsibility of going to trial and has a higher income than a lawyer. A legal consultant’s primary revenue stream revolves around:
- Providing legal advice to businesses and individuals
- Creating and drafting business documents such as policies, contracts, handbooks, etc.
- Assisting lawyers and their firms in handling and solving legal cases.
Business Technology Consultant
As a business technology consultant, you act as an external IT advisor. You are required to be the middleman between external software companies and your client. Your primary duties will revolve around solving IT infrastructure problems, software development, risk analysis, recovery plans, and online security.
With your knowledge, you need to be able to:
- Create, plan, and implement a strategy that works with your client’s resources.
- Understand the overall impact of technology on the organization as a whole.
- Spot bottlenecks and propose appropriate solutions for them.
- Communicate the benefits and use cases of new technology to less tech-savvy stakeholders.
- Create clear documentation to ensure the business can continue using the software you introduced long after you stop working with them.
Social Media Consultant
In today’s market, social media consultants are in high demand by companies that understand the true power of having an influential online presence. Your duty as a social media consultant will be to use your digital marketing and advertising background to leverage this power and directly influence the company’s revenue.
To be a social media consultant today, here is what you will need:
- An in-depth portfolio that highlights your expertise through case studies.
- Build a strong network that you can reach out to and knows what you do and how well you do it.
- Have pre-existing engaging social media accounts, as this will act as further proof of your experience.
- Have a reasonable pricing model that can reflect all project sizes.
Starting a consulting business is the perfect way to take your current job and turn it into a profession where you can work on your terms and schedule. It is an attractive option to many aspiring entrepreneurs because they get to use their current knowledge base while getting paid more for doing the same thing they are doing right now.
Being a consultant isn’t limited to any niche; therefore, anyone can do it. Three lucrative consulting business ideas that can generate six-figure incomes are:
- Legal Consultant
- Technology Consultant
- Social Media Consultant
Remember that being an expert does not mean knowing everything about an industry. It simply means you perceive more and have pre-existing experiences that others can benefit from if they choose to work with you.
Don’t be afraid. Realize that you can do more than work for a paycheck and start building your own consulting business today!