As a consultant, you are probably well aware of your expertise and what you can bring to the table. The important thing is focusing on those talents and communicating that to your clients. It is hopeless to target everyone within the market as you will end up reaching no one. You need to focus on a specific type of client, as otherwise, the background noise of the consulting world becomes too loud.
The difficult question as a consultant is where to place yourself and how to do it? The first place to look is why did you become a consultant, was it for the income, the passion for a certain specialism, or something else. We will show you how finding your niche will position you in a far more secure and profitable area of the market.
Knowledge and Expertise
Clients choose you as you add value to their company, you can offer them a deeper understanding within a specialized area of their business. You can uncover an area of the company in which they are facing issues. Often you need to evaluate the situation and see if the problem they want solving is actually the root issue. This is important as, you need to be 100% certain you can provide the required skills and experience to give the relevant advice and analysis in your chosen niche. And that you have the relevant sector know-how. Consultancy is based on reputation, so if you don’t feel confident that you can offer an outstanding service, it is always better to recommend some else. Clients value this honesty and in turn will be likely to return to you when a topic in your specialism arises. If possible you should try and get a recognized qualification in your area of expertise to give you credibility and differentiate yourself.
You need to ask yourself how many people are in your chosen field and whether it will be possible to break into that market based on your level of expertise. Even if you believe you have the relevant experience and knowledge within a chosen niche, a competitive market can almost be impossible to break into. If you are already fairly well established, finding a niche will give you room to grow, as there will be a larger portion of that market available for you to expand into.
You can use a tool like Ahrefs or a similar alternative that lets you check search volumes in Google. You can learn a lot about how competitive a niche is based on how often people search for that particular product or service. In addition, those SEO tools will allow you to conduct competitor analysis. You can see what kind of traffic existing people in your chosen field are getting, and which pages are performing well.
Remember to place yourself in a section of the market in which companies do not frequently require you. This might seem counter-intuitive, but in the long run, these businesses will end up hiring full-time staff to do the very same role that you are doing, but at a lower price. And the established connections you once had will quickly dry up. Objectively look at your skillset that you have to offer and choose an area that you know the average person would not be able to do by themselves.
The size of your niche
Even though a niche is by design narrowing the pool of clients, make sure you don’t choose a too small market. Try and choose a wider but clearly defined market, such as PR consulting in the law sector. If you are new as a consultant you can choose a broader market, but ensure that there is a clear journey for diversification; tailoring your business to enhance your growth. But at the end of the day, you will have to choose a niche that provides you with a sufficient income; in a market where there is long-term growth. As a consultant, you will have to strike a balance between your passion for a certain area of the market and the required income to live your desired life.
If you are ever unsure about what you should do, then ask our community!