Large IT companies like Hewlett Packard and IBM outsource entire departments like IBM’s Global Services to business consulting services. These concepts started small and were so successful that they have become profitable arms for prestigious firms. Companies have come to realize that outsourcing a successful consultancy is a cost effective means to turn a profit.
You know you will do a great job. You will represent your client’s interests well. You will be creative, you will be tireless and you will know your trends and facts. You will always have an eye to the future and bring new concepts and energy to the client’s business.
So, how will you sell your potential? How will you rise above other consultants who are throwing every resource at your client? Hopefully you will remember to follow your marketing script and employ a proactive selling strategy along the way to success.
Sell Yourself All the Way
In this era of easy informational access, clients are forced to make many decisions each hour, each day. You will be researching your prospective clients. Learn as much as you can about their businesses, their business practices, their products, their consulting needs and their credentials.
Consultants know that prospective clients are performing the same background checks. Good prospects do their homework. They will know about your track record. Most likely, these prospects will have spoken to your other clients. In compliance with your marketing plan, you will have sustained good relationships with prior clients.
You will now meet with this prospective client and decision-maker. At this meeting you, not the client, are the key player. How you handle yourself and how you interact with this prospect will put you in a position to accept or reject this client.
This meeting may well set the tone for the future of this consultancy. Do yourself justice. Be armed with readily available support documents. Engage the prospect. Get in the conversation at the right time.
There are three time-tested communication skills that comprise winning discussions.
- Listen Intently – selling is more about listening than about talking. Listen well and good conversation will follow.
- Ask Insightful Questions – show your listening prowess by gathering insight from the client. Ask questions that show your interest and retain the client’s input.
- Offer Creative Solutions – know your facts and stay away from scripted responses. Relax and insert creative feedback into the conversation. Show the client you can think on your feet. Always have supporting information at your fingertips.
Never rise above the client. Always emphasize your passion for providing valuable consulting services. Apply this selling strategy to every meeting, email, and telephone communication and the clients will come your way!