You can lead a consultant to market…

Confession

Something to aim for

Here is a confession: I am a consultant. I am consulted about tax issues and I am consulted about business problems. Luckily my potential clients know where to find me. Luckily? Well, maybe not. I have to market to get business. It is obvious really.

I know quite a few other consultants. Many people who are consultants have retired from a long term job, or have been involuntarily “retired” through redundancy. Often such people have very valuable skills to offer and they want to work, or they need to due to pension disasters of which there are many in the private sector.

So often our consultants have no idea how to find business. It is often better not to call oneself a consultant for fear of being a butt of the many jokes.  So disregard my earlier remark that I am a consultant. I am someone who has a good deal of expertise and can really help you and your business. I also can help you find just the specialist you need.

Available for work

We have established that there are many very experienced people looking for freelance work. So many of them have no idea how to find this work and surprisingly for many who may have so recently had a job and had to use IT or ICT are technophobes with regard to the on-line stuff. Sadly for those people, that is where so many potential customers look for specialists if they haven’t found them through networking and word of mouth.

Action now!

So what to do? In many ways it is obvious:

  • have a website
  • have valuable content on the website in the shape of articles
  • have a blog

Content marketing is a main driver of visitors. The technical content on my main tax website is popular. It is also self-tuning in letting me know what people are looking for because I know what was in their search, which I know through Google Analytics and StatCounter.  In fact I don’t have to write articles very regularly if I make sure they are really valuable.

Then there is this place, On Our Bikes. It attracts prospective clients and it helps keep me up the search rankings. I am easily found on a name searchof course because my name is not that common, but there are for more instances of me than of the other guys with the same moniker. So there is no doubt about my name brand but my name would have to be known in connection with what I do for this to be really effective.

It might be better to search for my expertise. If we look for “tax Essex”, but without the inverted commas I am still high up  on the first page. If we enter “tax return Essex”, at the time of writing my business is the first of the entries which have not been paid for on the first page of Google.

So the answer in terms of driving the on-line marketing is through having websites and blogs which are entirely WordPress based. And WordPress is relatively inexpensive to manage though I recommend you do get some help in managing it. The results are really brilliant.

Don’t be Billy / Billie no-mates

I cannot understand how so many “consultants” sit around and wait for business to arrive somehow when they make no effort. Having a LinkedIn profile can help quite a lot. And any profile can help because I keep some of my photos on Flickr and the Google search entry for my Flickr says “Tax practitioner, business connector, freelance writer, blogger at On Our Bikes, Jon Stow Consulting Tax Blog and Jon Stow’s Posterous …” So you can keep your photographs backed up and have a profile mentioning your expertise. And it’s free, though I do recommend that any person with expertise makes more effort than that.

If you are a specialist, you can do a lot at relatively low cost to be found on-line. You do have to make an effort and not be scared of getting out there. Look at what others do, and adapt their tactics to your own skills.

Preferably you should pay a marketing person who knows what they are doing, so get a recommendation. I think that at a minimum you ought to have a LinkedIn profile and a website with a few specialist articles so that visitors can see that you know your stuff. Then talk to someone about how you can be found on-line ahead of other people (that’s called SEO).

Do it!

Just don’t do nothing. Nothing ventured, nothing gained. There really is no excuse especially when the alternative is poverty. Do you need a consultant, oh sorry, specialist?

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