The topic of today is how to create a business plan for a business consulting business. You are a professional, you’ve worked in your field for a number of years, and now you’re prepared to offer your specific expertise to other businesses. What should you focus on as you plan out your new business? My suggestion is to focus on a successful client attraction model.
What problem will you solve? Every business has its own unique set of problems, but there are some things that are consistent in almost every business. Here are some short examples: lead generation, customer service, management consulting, legal structure, social media, public relations, and salesmanship. These are just some of the issues you could consult on as a business consultant. What you have to do is be clear about which problem you are solving. Be careful, do not focus on the service you are offering. Instead, focus on the specific problem your client has in their business. What words are they using to define their problem and what solution are you prepared to offer that matches their problem as they describe it?
How will you reach them, consistently? There are a number of ways to market or promote a business. You can do it through networking, referrals, live events, and direct mail just to name a few. Here is the part you have to focus on, you have to be clear and confident that you can use your resources, your advantages, and your strengths create a strategy to find your best client over and over again. Be careful of the silver bullet dynamic where certain strategies seem impactful, but require resources that your business doesn’t have. Focus on what you have access to, what you understand, and what you know how to do and use those methods to consistently attract your best client.
Make a decision! You have to commit to trying your chosen strategy until it works. You have to know that when you use a certain strategy, you’re going to get a certain response. You have to work the strategy until you really understand what that response is. To that end, regard all information as feedback. It doesn’t matter whether you like your feedback or not, all information helps you make smarter business decisions. You have to be consistent with your strategy in order to clearly understand the quality of the feedback you are getting in response. Respond to your feedback by revising the plan accordingly. Whether you choose to try the plan again with no changes or you choose make specific tweaks, you have to revise the plan as you go. The plan is not a static document that lasts forever. Just because you’ve written something down, it doesn’t mean the world is going to respond exactly how you intended. You have to make some adjustments to stay relevant in your marketplace.
There are a lot of ways to craft a business plan, but there are some things that need your immediate attention. One of those urgent things is your client attraction strategy. You have to know what service you are offering, what problem it solves, who you plan to reach, how you plan to reach them, and commit to refining your process over time. This is a core fundamental that must be included in your business consulting business plan.