Using the Seminar to Sell Your Consulting Services
Seminars are a great way to trade your customers up to consulting. For some people, your seminar will be the first product they have bought from you. Others will have purchased other products before attending your event. In either case, the seminar gives you a chance to showcase both your speaking skills and your content knowledge.
There are other models for generating consulting business, but doing seminars is one of the easiest I know about.
The keys to generating consulting business are similar to those that lead to a great seminar experience.
First, you have to give people an incredible amount of useful information. This will convince them of your knowledge of the topic and your willingness to share it.
Second, you must never withhold information. If you ever give people the feeling that you are not giving them the “straight scoop” (i.e., that you are holding back to entice them to use you as a consultant), they will not respond well. In turn, they will be much less likely to give you consulting work.
Some seminar leaders/speakers think that if you keep a little bit of information in your back pocket people will pay extra in order for you to show your cards. Nothing could be further from the truth. People are much more likely to give you consulting business when you give them everything you know and respond to all questions fully and forthrightly.
If you do this, people will be much more likely to ask you to come and give them individual help. No matter how much information you provide, they will think you have more to give. When you deliberately and obviously hold back information, you risk having them feel “taken” by some kind of a ruse to get you to give them more money.
When someone asks you a question during your seminar and you respond with: “Well, hire me as a consultant and I’ll give you all of the information that you want … ” you are dead in the water. People will feel taken advantage of. (The exception to this – and a great opportunity to sell your consulting during the seminar – is if an attendee asks a question that is so specific to his or her company or situation that it is obvious that nobody else will want to hear the answer.)
You need to be 100% willing to share everything you know during the seminar. You owe it to your participants. Behave this way and you’ll get plenty of consulting work.