Reinventing Clients' Business Model
Wednesday, November 09, 2011
Posted by: Christine M. Glasco
I had the opportunity to assist one of my most successful clients in
understanding, valuing and envisioning her business in an entirely new
way. This entrepreneur, Mary R.,
originally decided to start a business because she wanted the freedom of
working from home, setting her own hours and building wealth. She was highly successful in solving problems
for her clients and helping her clients with branding, marketing and increasing
R. asked me for assistance in reviewing her approach to sales and building a
more profitable business. After
investigating and examining her business plan and profit margin, I identified
some problems in her approach to marketing and issues concerning a lack of
leveraging her consulting capabilities, including:
was spending an inordinate amount of time on site with her clients performing
lower level work.
was also giving away a lot of knowledge capital in order to sell her services
and close the sale, rather than approaching her potential client fully
confident in her expertise and with great ability to clarify and showcase the
bottom-line benefits of her consulting services.
was under-pricing her services.
was marketing to clients who experienced "sticker shock” versus identifying an
ideal client in a specific niche who would pay well for her services.
was defining her capabilities and services in "contractor” language. Mary R.
described her services in terms of duties and tasks and thus she became
a discretionary "want” versus a "must have” resource with direct documented
business growth impact.
a part of the client’s operations is a great role if the coach wants to be
viewed as a "support” provider. However,
my client needed to upgrade the perceived value of her services, offer a
premier line of services and change her role from "hands and feet” to business
strategist, solutions provider and value add expert advisor. In short, she needed to market innovative
solutions and the outstanding "results” of her consultancy and advisory
services to a new type of potential customer.
developed a three-pronged approach to help her upgrade her fee structure, spend
less time ‘contracting’, spend more time
in high-value consulting and redesign her marketing and sales approach to focus
- First, I
asked her to define the role she wanted to play with her clients. I asked her if she wanted to be on the
client site "working” or if she wanted to coach and consult?
- Next, I asked her to identify the
value she brought to her clients.
Using this information, we reengineered her marketing materials and
sales strategy to emphasize benefits and results, versus features.
- Finally, I asked her to develop a
"first meeting” fee. This would
ensure that she only met with serious buyers and would also off-set
marketing and sales costs. This
"first meeting fee” is not appropriate for all businesses – but was right
for this client.
are described as vendors or advisors who provide a specialized brand of
expertise, skill or knowledge to help their clients solve unique business
problems. Consultants typically will
review the stated issues, circumstances and needs of the enterprise and develop
solutions to help the enterprise attain the next level of evolution whether
that level is revenue growth, market penetration, new product roll-out or
adding shareholder value.
working with this entrepreneur, I was able to design an intervention that
helped her reexamine her services and marketing approach to ensure she achieved
her wealth building goals.
Christine M. Glasco
consults to company executives, business owners and non-profit leaders on
strategic leadership and career management/career transformation solutions. She
also provides coaching for coaches and consultants.