Top tier consulting firms have major clients in their “logo soup.” On their website and on a slide in their first presentation to a potential client, they are proud to mention the fact that they have provided services to large, prestigious companies in their area or vertical. It shows that they’re in the top tier of their category. It shows that people with significant budgets and significant pressures on their performance trust their judgement.
Many consultants would love to get to the point that they had one of those logos in their logo soup, too. But the reality is that, even if you have one, it doesn’t solve your business development problem. A past relationship with a large client doesn’t generate new clients on its own. It certainly helps, but even those consultants who have the big-name logo still find it challenging to grow their consultancy. We know, because they come to us to help them with exactly that.
Choose Your Logo
A powerful way of justifying your value is to be aligned with, or certified by, a well-known consulting brand. It’s the same concept as the logo soup. If you’ve had a prestigious client, people respect you for that. If you choose to associate your business with a prestigious consulting brand, they will respect you for that, too.
The psychology behind this is so well-established there’s a name for it: The Law of Association. It’s one of the most effective ways companies and individuals can use to persuade others. Being associated with a well-known brand helps to reduce the client’s perceived risk of doing business with you. The client naturally infers that you have a higher level of quality. The association also shows that you follow a proven approach that has been used by many others before you, further reducing their risk and making you seem like a safe investment.
If you work with enterprise clients, you probably want to have an association with one of one of the big firms like Mckinsey, Bain, Accenture and the like. If you work with small or medium sized clients, you probably want to have an association with a brand like Gazelles, Traction or RESULTS.com
Reduce Your Risk
We always encourage consultants who come to us and who ask about the others to investigate them thoroughly. They quickly discover that those brands are famous because of the books associated with them.
But consultants don’t sell books, and books don’t build businesses. Not your client’s and certainly not yours. Certainly, leaving someone else’s book behind at a client’s site will not have the same impact as bragging about your biggest clients. You need more than a book.
You need to mitigate your own risk, too. If you’re going to associate your practice with a brand name, then you want to make sure that you’re getting plenty out of that investment, too.
The best way to make that happen is to ask yourself these questions:
- Which consulting brand enables me to deepen my client relationships?
- Which gives me the ability to schedule meaningful follow-ups and reviews?
- Which one increases the full contract value of each client?
Of course, RESULTS has excellent answers to those questions. Once you have your client’s management team holding meetings in our business management platform, you have already thought through every aspect of their business and made some important decisions. Your relationship starts deeper, and becomes deeper as you, yourself, schedule billable hours by attending periodic meetings along with them. That’s the first way we help our consultants increase the full contract value of each client.
Grow Your Business
We encourage you to keep asking questions:
- Which consulting brand is looking only for a win-win relationship, as opposed to just wanting you to pay a big fee?
- Which enables you to create passive, recurring revenue stream?
- And, most importantly perhaps, which one guarantees that your engagement will be profitable?
We have excellent answers to those questions, too. We accept only those consultants who will be a great fit for us. We take excellent care of them, providing them with a portion of the licensing fee, with a whole range marketing support, and with promotions to our clients. But you want to know about the guarantee, don’t you? To find out about that, click here:
Posted by Stephen Lynch
Author of the award winning business book Business Execution for RESULTS & President of RESULTS.com, Lynch is widely recognized as one of the best strategic consultants in the world.Facebook LinkedIn Twitter Google+