If you are starting a consultancy business or redefining who you serve with your consulting services, choosing a consulting niche can make a huge difference to the amount you charge for your services and how successful you become. This article, a mini niche consultancy course in effect, is designed to help you choose your consulting niche.
If you know that choosing a consulting niche is a good idea but are not sure what your niche is, how can you decide which niche to enter?
The key thing is that it is very much worth spending some time on choosing your consulting niche as it can make your business more fun, more successful and ultimately more profitable.
Help For Choosing Your Consulting Niche
The first thing to do is to start by listing all of the skills or attributes that you have which might suggest which consulting niche might be a good choice for you.
Let me give you some prompts to start you off. Run through these and write them all down on your App of choice or a good old fashioned pen and paper.
- Do you have qualifications in an industry?
- Have you always worked in one area of business (technology, retail, environment, health and safety, recruitment)?
- Do you have a particular hobby or passion that you could turn into a niche?
- Is there one type of business that has always fascinated you and that you have read about extensively?
- Do you relate to a certain type of person? Do those people work in certain types of business? Eg Lawyers or accountants are very detailed people. They are not easy to sell to as they are not swayed on emotion but like hard facts. Does this sound like a group you can work with? Alternatively, people in sales or recruitment are much more client friendly and will be more swayed by the emotions of selling and marketing. Is this you? Once you start studying different sectors you will soon find a niche that suits your personality and your consultancy.
- What stirs emotion in you when you start talking or reading about it? What gets the pit of your stomach churning in excitement?
Is there anything else that interests or fascinates you that you can add to this list?
There should be an idea germinating for your consultancy niche now that you have done this. Look at your list and start to jot down a few ideas of what your new consulting niche might be, before moving onto the next step.
Is There Already Competition In Your Niche?
If you find someone already offering consulting services in your niche, this is an excellent sign. It proves to you that there is a need for these niche consultancy services, and someone else has already warmed up the market for you.
If you head to google and type in the name of this niche consultancy that you are considering, for example in my case ‘marketing consultant’ and you see three or four advertisements at the top of Google, you know that there is demand for these services. This is excellent news.
Don’t let it make you believe that there is already too much competition in this consulting niche.
You will have your own style of consultancy that is unique to you (consultancy is a very personal service) and that might be quite different from your competitors.
Some clients will prefer your competitors style, others yours. In my experience there is room enough in every market for more consultants.
Conversely, if there is absolutely no one already practising in your chosen niche, in my experience, that is because there is generally not a great need for a consultant. There may be an exception, such as new business sectors, but it might also be because the niche does not need or rely on consultants.
If that is the case, the only way that you will find out if there is a need for your services is a little old fashioned; hit the telephone and LinkedIn and ask your ideal clients if they would engage your niche consultancy services.
Will Your Niche Be Profitable?
The final stage in this section will be personal to you, but you must know before embarking on your consultancy whether your niche has the potential to make the living you want to make.
If you have your competitors this can be quite easily assessed by working out what they charge as an average, then seeing what, if you filled 3 days of every working week providing that service, would that make financially. Would it provide you with the living that you want from your consultancy?
For example, if you can charge £250 per day this would be the equation:
£250 x 3 days = £750 x 48 weeks = £36,000
For a £500 daily rate this would be £500 x 3 days = £1,500 x 48 weeks = £72,000
For a £1,000 daily rate this would be £1,000 x 3 days = £3,000 x 48 weeks = £144,000
You can see how by choosing a niche and being able to charge a good daily rate, you can soon easily build a six figure consultancy.
You must also realise that this is not going to be your total earnings.
On top of this, as a thought leader to your clients in time, there are opportunities to generate income in many other ways such as:
- commissions by referring your clients to other service providers (once you have checked that they are good at what they do);
- affiliate commissions for software products that you recommend;
- training courses (if you want to); and
- information products or membership sites.
What you have to be satisfied with at this stage is that you will make enough with your basic consultancy service to pay the bills. Of course this will not happen overnight but it can happen by the end of the first year or sooner depending on your niche and how carefully you follow my consultancy marketing plan.
Charging More Than Your Consulting Competitors
The other point to bear in mind is that if you can build your expertise to a position above that of your competitors then you will be able to charge more than them.
The tools I provide you with in the consultancy toolkit will mean that often your potential clients come to you first and will not shop around for prices.
They will be so convinced by your expertise if you follow my marketing methods that often you will the only consultancy that they contact.
In my sector I charge more for my services than many of my competitors because I deliver results. I also offer money back guarantees so that if anyone uses my services and does not feel they have had value they can have their money back.
If you build your niche consulting business the right way and go out of your way to add value at every stage of the process your clients will never ask for a refund. They will know they are getting a good deal and will not want to upset you as you become more important to them.
If you cannot make the income you need, you need to go back through the list and find another niche and see if that can pay what you need.
Draw up a short list of several areas and you will know when you have found your niche.
When you get that burning inside that excites and ignites you you will know you have arrived.
If the sums do add up, you have found your niche, so how do you now go about becoming an expert in your sector?
Your 6 Figure Consultancy
Download this free guide to discover:
- How to generate leads for your consultancy, week after week.
- The secret to winning repeat client business
- How to price your services to guarantee success
- How to leverage your time to ensure that you are paid over and over again for work you do only once
- Easy ways to keep in touch with your clients
- Automating your business so that you can enjoy more time with your family or to enjoy your hobbies, ensuring you always stay fresh and focused for your clients
- The one mistake that could derail your consultancy (if you do not know about it)