One trend I see happening lately is freelancers and other types of service providers wanting to get into the digital consulting game. Quite frankly, they tell me they are tired of providing done-for-you services and would rather teach.
I hear them. I’ve been moving toward digital consulting in some way for a while now. It was just recently when most of my income started coming from consulting instead of freelancing.
That being said, how do you do this? How can a service provider move into the digital consulting space? And why would they want to do it in the first place?
Why Freelancers Are Moving Toward Digital Consulting
Based on conversations I’ve been having recently, here are the main reasons why freelancers are wanting to move into the digital consulting space.
- Some people are already asking them to do it.
- Consulting is a high price-point offering people will pay for.
- They have capped out on the amount of money they can earn freelancing.
- Instead of doing something for a client, they teach the client how to fish for themselves.
The last two especially are worth noting. There is a lot less effort exerted on my part when I get a consulting gig yet I earn more money. Additionally, I teach clients how to know their markets really well. That way, should they decide to outsource their digital marketing, they actually know how to express what they need.
How to Move Into Digital Consulting
Now that we’ve discussed why freelancers want to move toward digital consulting, it’s time to discuss the how. Fortunately, many freelancers already have experience and some sort of branding in place, so the rest is easy.
Just do it.
Many of the freelancers I’ve had this conversation with are already getting approached with consulting opportunities. If this is the case, just tell the prospect your rate and get to work.
Sometimes it really is just a matter of starting to ask for the money rather than trying to figure out a bunch of logistics. (Believe me, I’m the queen of getting hung up on logistics and losing money as a result.)
Realize you already have the chops you need.
The one thing many freelancers have going for them is they know what they are talking about. This is because they’ve been doing the work for clients for many years, so now it’s simply a matter of teaching it.
A common issue I see with freelancers who want to move into digital consulting is they don’t feel confident enough to teach. This fear usually goes away when I point out just how much experience they actually have.
This brings me to my final point…
Learn how to sell your expertise.
Chances are you already know how to sell a done-for-you service like writing or design, but things are a little different when you’re selling knowledge.
The good news is people will gladly pay for knowledge. They’ll also pay a lot of money for it. The bad news is knowledge is intangible so you have to learn how to sell it, usually by showing results you’ve gotten for previous clients.
It’s not a huge jump to go from freelancing to digital consulting. In fact, many freelancers, including myself, naturally end up going this route at some point. If you’re at this point already, make sure you start asking to get paid for it.