The Consultant Next Door
The Consultant Next Door

The Consultant Next Door

Consulting - is a process or an engagement for solving problems. It is very intangible. I’ll teach you how to mitigate this downside in a later chapter when you’re selling it, but it’s important to know that you are selling something that is invisible for most people. (Location 622)

To be successful over a LONG period of time as a consultant, you have to develop a bit of a protective “citadel” around your confidence, your identity, and your self-worth… because no matter how good you get at SELECTION, some clients will make it their entire mission to fail and then, they will blame their life’s choices on you. (Location 669)

If you’re asking me, I say that the upside outweighs the downsides 10 times to 1. One of my personal mentors told me early on: the bad clients are just the price you pay to reach the good clients. (Location 676)

My point is this: so many people discount what they can do and, unfortunately, they don’t believe people are smart enough to pay them for their expertise… so they don’t even try. (Location 973)

They are investing in the belief they have that you can either fix a problem they’re dealing with right now, or that you can deliver a result that they’ve always wanted, but don’t know how to get. Belief is invisible. So is the wind. (Location 629)

You have to get your niche targeted on the problem not the demographics- then your price issues go out the window. (Location 1211)

Your income isn’t dependent on whether your market likes you, it’s dependent on whether they trust you can help them do something they don’t know how (or don’t have time) to do. (Location 1232)

Pricing Hack: cost increases based on A) length they’ve been dealing with the problem and B) pain associated with dealing with the problem without a solution. (Location 1259)

Years ago, I took my FIRST copywriting project and I knocked it out of the park. But I only charged $300 for it — compared to $20,000+ for similar work just a year later. (Location 1426)

The only rapport I’m interested in building in the first few minutes of the call is trust — I want them to know A) I have their best interest in mind no matter what and B) my job today is just to help them diagnose and prescribe where to go. (Location 1755)

Thirdly, if done correctly, consulting carries LOW fragility, meaning: you can easily weather any storm - be it economic downturns, disrupting technology, increased competition, and even health challenges. (Location 331)

If you take the sum of your life experiences, you can derive EXPERTISE from those experiences, and THAT becomes your “startup capital.” You can be completely funded with expertise or “intellectual property,” rather than needing to invest in a team, special tools, material costs or tech. (Location 416)

One last point on “profit margins” which we’ll cover in greater detail later on. In Verne Harnish’s book “Scaling Up,” he says that if a business is profiting 15% they are at the top of the world in terms of business profitability and health. When Chris and I started Traffic and Funnels (our main consultancy), our profit margins were north of 80%. (Location 463)

We want to be present with our families, AND, we want to build a successful business that funds whatever our lifestyles require. BOTH/AND is our motto… too many entrepreneurs get caught thinking EITHER/OR. (Location 496)

We have clients from all walks of life in all sorts of different niches and industries… The thing to remember is, as a consultant, IF you have a good offer (which we’ll talk about later in this book), you can have a PROFOUND impact on people’s lives and businesses; and it does not have to require huge startup costs to do it. (Location 506)

I think, perhaps, one of my favorite things about consulting, is you can provide tremendous value and service to people all over the world without selling out your freedom. Simply put, when you practice consulting the right way, it is sustainable. (Location 519)

Consulting allows you to essentially “rev high” (picture the RPMs on a vehicle) without taking the toll that a normal business model takes on your humanity. Imagine trying to get your vehicle to go 80 mph stuck in 1st gear. It would be loud, hot, and the car would probably explode! (Location 544)

There might not be another model of business where someone can collect and stockpile sizable amounts of money (legally, that is!) as QUICKLY as one can with consulting. Oftentimes the investment needed to make a consulting business work equals out to be the cost of a Dropbox account, a cell phone bill (which you’re already paying for), maybe a notebook and a pen (which anyone can afford), and if you want speed, the simple cost of paying for a mentor to show you the way. (Location 555)

Now, there are a few ways to mitigate this downside, but it goes without saying - to truly be a consultant you are going to be doing some work. You won’t be able to totally get away from your name and thus, your effort. In a later chapter, we’ll talk about “LEVERAGE,” which is as close as you can get to full on removal… (Location 601)

A lot of our clientele earn significantly more money than the average neuroscientist. We have 8-figure business clients, 7-figure business clients, and many 6-figure business clients who could do more, but are happy where they are financially. (Location 639)

Even SIMPLE consulting models, such as helping someone lose weight in exchange for money, can require a lot of creative thinking and bandwidth to perform the job well - and oftentimes you are unable to disconnect until the job is done. Remember, after all, that as consultants we are solving problems literally all day long. (Location 646)

You can take great strides towards offsetting downside #3 by using “models,” which I can’t wait to get into! I will show you how to use plug and play models to get going quickly with your consulting business - but there is a fourth downside I’d like to tackle right now… and this is, perhaps, the biggest downside. (Location 648)

I am a real life consultant, actively participating in my chosen craft. There is no way I can make as much money teaching this thing as I can (or am) doing this thing! But I digress … this isn’t about my income, it’s about yours. (Location 706)

There are always people who want to buy from you — if your offer is good and you have the expertise required to actually help them. The key here is to REALLY understand (and believe) that the RIGHT people will ultimately pay you A LOT if you are solving something IMPORTANT to them. (Location 928)

One of the most IMPORTANT lessons I learned from that job was the power of specificity. To confuse people, remove clarity; overwhelm them with so many details they can’t keep it all in their working memory; talk in circles and spell out conflicting timelines, but follow up with “We’re doing everything we can and you are a top priority for us. Can we call you with more info?” (Location 1106)

When I say give me your “niche,” what I am saying is, give me clarity on a specific PAIN/PROBLEM/DESIRE — and describe the type of person most likely to have this problem. The reason why we want to develop a clear niche is simple: if you can identify one small “vertical” of people, who need what you sell, you can dominate. (Location 1135)

Before, I was just an “Average Joe Copywriter.” After, I was the copywriter specifically trained to help you IF you used Infusionsoft and needed expert campaigns written FOR Infusionsoft. This leads me into a few points about creating your niche. A good niche is the following: Clear (when you hear it, you know instantly whether you’re in the niche or not)   Outcome-oriented (usually the outcome is to solve a problem, or deliver a desired result; the point is, when you hear it you know instantly whether you want the outcome or not)   Specialized (there is no competition between a ‘general doctor’ and a ‘neurosurgeon’ if you need brain surgery, this is because of the specialized skill set a neurosurgeon has developed - same with a niche) (Location 1159)

Elastic (you can charge more with a good niche than you can with no niche) (Location 1170)

You are not going to be spending every single hour of a forty hour work week with a brand new client. Usually the ratio I see with my clients is 25% enrolling and taking on clients, and 75% on other business activities (such as marketing, studying, actually consulting, hiring, and admin). That means if you have 40 hours in a week, and you spend 25% (10 hours) enrolling new clients, and the goal is $250,000 per year — you need to earn $480 per hour spent on enrolling new clients… (Location 1354)

First things first should not be a funny saying but, rather, a modus operandi that you allow to guide your thinking (and your activities). As Chris says, “Fix your BIGGEST problems FIRST.” That’s a winning strategy! (Location 2937)

Probably 75% of our clientele don’t want to out-scale themselves. They enjoy the work, they love the service they provide, and they’re making plenty of money with plenty of surplus and have no reason to keep scaling. There are some businesses that we own in which that is the case for us as well. Not everything needs to be “big.” Some things are better when they’re small, intimate, and maximized for the sake of enjoyment. (Location 2961)

Chris does this better than anyone I know. At the time of this writing, he owns two 8-figure businesses and one 7-figure business with me… we both get paid very well (in the millions, each, personally), and his living expenses are locked at $15,000 per month. (Location 3083)

What I mean by this is… it is easier to build environment than it is to build discipline. I don’t want to have more than $20K cash on hand ever! I don’t like having surplus. If I don’t want to spend $150K on a car, I have two ways of doing that. I can either exert my will against the want of the car and fight with myself or I can maneuver my environment where I don’t have $150K to spend. (Location 3118)