Lessons From a B2B Consultant
Updated: Oct 1
If you are like many consultants you like to get business clients via word of mouth or referral.
I mean - large contacts via a warm introduction is ideal right? .
But of course this is so limiting because you are waiting for the jobs coming to you and you have almost no control over when this will happen..
Or you might get inbound leads via SEO, paid ads, or content marketing but do you find that the business decision maker is just not reaching out to you enough this way?
This is because those decision makers are not necessarily googling for a solution, or trawling through blogs or social content online.
Executives and heads of department tend not to be hanging out in Facebook groups.
These ladies and gents are just not accessible via inbound methods in the way that the average consumer is.
For B2B more than any other demographic, proactive cold outreach to a decision maker via LinkedIn and/ email is the MOST effective and MOST predictable form of client generation.
And too many consultants and business owners are NOT doing cold outreach AT ALL.
Here is a quick overview of the three steps of B2B client generation that as a consultant I have seen work with predictability time and time again:
The first stage is OPTIMISE
This means really knowing who you are targeting in terms of:
the size of company,
the number of staff,
the annual turn over,
the department within the company,
the decision makers title or role,
the geography of the company
its stage of development [start up, seed funding, merger, sale, etc.]
Once you have optimised what type of company you can help and who the decision maker is you have to optimise the message you use to connect cold with new clients.
For cold outreach, this message must be about their challenge or need and refer to their goal or desire.
You can’t talk in terms of what you do - but in terms of the results you can help create.
Of course it’s impossible to know with 100% accuracy via cold outreach which company is facing a certain need or challenge at any particular moment, but here a bit of research with your optimisation and niche targeting can help a lot.
The second stage is ENGAGE
This means setting up and sending outreach messages to the lists of decision makers you have found via LinkedIn and email.
Engagement messaging is not selling - you are talking in terms of results you create to gauge interest and open a conversation.
With a good engagement strategy, you should get a higher than normal % of people responding to your cold outreach to learn a bit more and this is where the sales conversations start.
And if you engage across LinkedIn AND email you have double the chance of reaching a decision maker and opening the door to a conversation.
The third stage is CONVERT.
At this point you have outreach messages going out to your ideal client decision maker regularly via email and LinkedIn.
To pour fuel on the fire you can automate much of this process through a few good LinkedIn and email automation tools.
This means you can send more messages to more people and book more appointments with regularity.
More conversations means a fuller pipeline of business, a handful of relationships that you can nurture and develop to the point of proposal or business contract.
A strong follow up and lead nurture process is necessary to all leads in your pipeline so being able to track and measure the value of your pipeline and touch base with leads regularly is absolutely essential.
This way you turn cold leads into warm leads and warm leads into hot leads. Finally hot leads turn into business clients.
To put this into context:
The average consultant charges a day rate of $500 - $1500 [and often more].
This means that projects of several weeks easily become $5k - $15k
Monthly retainers can turn into $10 - $100k annual contracts when positioned well.
Just converting ONE MORE project each month is therefore worth $50k per year more and one more retainer per month can easily become $100k - $1m per year more.
Most consultants can easily pass work to associates or grow their team on demand - it’s bringing in the paying clients that is the challenge.
Do you see how setting up a cold outbound lead generation system on LinkedIn and email is a no brainer?
I have an amazing 1-to-1 programme for experienced coaches and consultants who are ready to build a consistent strategy of winning $10k - $100k high ticket B2B contracts organically via LinkedIn and email outreach. (My highest personal win was $300k AUD and my highest client contract was £200k GBP)
The investment for the program is currently $5k which when you consider only one contract of $10k will more than repay twice or three times.
(Three months is actually about how long it takes for my lead gen system to start consistently showing results which is why we work together for this long allowing time to tweak and iterate your offer-message and targeting!)
If interested, simply send me an email. We'll have a quick chat to see if the program is a good fit for you and your business. If so, we can start right away!
To your success
ps. I have heaps of FREE resources and training via this Facebook group here.