„How to Sharpen Your Profile – and Get into the Mental Short List of Clients“
By Giso Weyand
The life of a decision maker is not easy: He leads his company or department in an uncertain environment, plans keep changing, projects are managed in an agile way, budgets are subject to change, vast amounts of information are available online, virtual and real teams require his attention, and on top of all this stress, several consultants want to introduce themselves and their service offerings each week.
Once the decision maker has a real need, he does not remember most of those consultants: too interchangeable, too similar, too uninteresting. However, one or two of them have sticked in his memory – and those are the ones he reaches out to. So how do they make it to his mental short list? Above all, through a clear value proposition!
Your Value Proposition in One Sentence
We have heard it many times by now: Position yourself based on a clear specialization, use benefit-based wording, convey in one sentence what makes you different from all the others. However, the problem is: In practice, this is hardly feasible. Most consulting firms and freelancers have grown organically. Each client request was different, the consultant accepted the projects and got up to speed. The result was a broad spectrum of competencies, and it is not always sensible to change that. Of course, finding a niche makes sense, but there is a trade-off between a clearer positioning and the limitation of the business that needs to be checked carefully.
So: What to do if there is no niche? Explain your value proposition in one sentence. In many cases, your projects have one benefit in common. To find this out, proceed as follows:
- List all your project from the past few years. Yes, all of them!
- Ask yourself: What was the benefit of the project for the client? Write down all benefits of all the projects.
- For each benefit on the list, ask yourself again: What was the benefit for the client? Often, several deeper benefits are connected to a superficial one. E.g.: Your client has entered a new market segment successfully with your help. What could be deeper benefits behind this? He has caught on with his competitors. His Business Unit has become a front runner within his company. Or maybe his company has overcome a crisis that way.
- You have listed this for all the projects? Good. Then look for a common denominator of all these benefits.
The result is a punchy sentence:
- I reduce process costs by 10%
- We set standards in your company
- I help leaders become significantly more effective
- I boost your business in China
What sounds like a banality makes a big difference when competing with all those who strain the decision maker with long descriptions of their services – because he has no time and, in fact, no interest in you. One sentence, a core benefit – that’s what helps to stick in his mind.
Read in the next Newsletter: How to Become a Brand as Consultant.
The value proposition in one sentence is only one element of the pull you can generate from your clients as a consultant. Others, such as self-awareness and a distinctive brand, will be the subject of our next network event, this time with Giso Weyand as guest speaker:
Network Event – Hamburg – September 22
With Giso Weyand
„Distinctive as Consultant Brand – How to Generate True Pull“
When registering, please proceed as follows:
- Please follow the link “Hier klicken, um einen Aktionscode einzugeben” at the bottom
- Enter „Consocium-Newsletter“ as code
- Fill in the number of tickets in the top row (“Anmeldung über Newsletter”) and continue registration by clicking “Weiter”
About Giso Weyand
Giso Weyand is probably Germany’s most experienced marketer of consultants and consulting firms: He supported 960 of them extensively for many years, 50 of them made it into the Top 3 of their respective areas of expertise. He trained 11,000 participants in interactive workshops and lectures, eleven books document his work. Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung wrote: Consulting is his life.
You can find his blog here: www.weyand-schreibt.com
For further information about Giso Weyand: www.teamgisoweyand.de
Registration for the Consocium Network Event in Hamburg on September 22
Steigenberger Hotel Hamburg, Heiligengeistbrücke 4, 20459 Hamburg
Get together: 7:30 pm, Lecture Giso Weyand: 8:00 pm
Networking-Event - Online Event Management mit der Ticketing-Lösung von XING Events