054: How to Run a Service and Consulting Business
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Today’s topic is consultancy (services) businesses. The show kicks off with Hiten and Steli talking about their wins and losses when starting up their first consultancies. Steli had started off with his company called Elastic Sales, and Hiten was in full-on SEO consulting mode.
But what they did was start with an audience they knew and a subject they knew a lot about, because that’s how you gain experience to move on to the thing you really want to be doing. In this episode they dive head first into talking about what they did to make their consulting companies work, who they had to hire, and their tips to avoid one of the biggest mistakes in a relationship-based business.
Today’s topics include:
- Solving capacity problems
- How to get value out of free work
- Hiten and Steli’s rapid-fire tips
- How to manage hiring and cash flow
- Why you might want to start doing consulting
- How to deal with dips in business and attention
Whenever you’re consulting, be sure that what you’re making is much more profitable than you think necessary, and truly understand the values that you’re creating; the type of customer you have; and what kind of help they need to be a profitable customer for you. It’s your job to determine whether you and the customer are good fit.
A free consultation call could do just the trick. Offering something of value for free is key, and you shouldn’t be afraid to give free information or consultation calls here or there. Information is the cheapest thing you can give your audience, yet it’s extremely effective; and that’s just what you’ll hear about in detail during today’s show.
- Steli: If you’re not doing it yet and you’re just getting started, just write down what you’re good at, and if you can’t take it from there, go sign up for something like Earn 1K.
- Hiten: In case you’re not sure if you want to do consulting, just be ridiculous with the pricing and make it worth your while. What is a price that will get you excited to do it? If you don’t get what you asked for, OK; you weren’t sure you wanted to do it anyway. But if you do, it can’t be beat!
Links and resources:
- How to build a brand – Ep. 34
- How to build a great reputation – Ep. 46
- Paul Graham’s website
- The Startup Chat Facebook group
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