Offline Consulting without even meeting the Prospect

14 replies
So much has been talked about Offline Consulting over the past few months and lots of excellent threads have been created.I wanted to hear your opinion on one thing.

Is it possible to provide 'Top Notch' consulting services to offline businesses without having to meet the prospect? Maybe providing services to some business from other states or other countries?

By 'Top Notch' i mean,providing everything you would provide to a business in your state or locality.

Will it be too hard to convince the owners to pay someone he/she will never see or meet?

Anyone with success in similar case wants to share it? Anyone providing similar service to people? Anyone who doesn't likes conducting seminars and all? I would be really grateful to you for your views.

Do give your thoughts and opinions on this.

Thank you.
#consulting #meeting #offline #prospect
  • This is quite possible. It just depends on the quality of your offer. Often, your local community may not be the best place to promote offline services. You can communicate by telephone or e-mail. In fact, the webinar model right now is a good way for converting prospects out of your local area.
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  • Profile picture of the author Kelly Verge
    It might be a little harder to position yourself for top dollar. I'm sure it's still possible, but a face-to-face makes that part easy for me.
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    • Profile picture of the author apocrypha
      Originally Posted by Kelly Verge View Post

      It might be a little harder to position yourself for top dollar. I'm sure it's still possible, but a face-to-face makes that part easy for me.
      I think its better to start at a lower rate and after showing them the results,go for big money.

      After all,results and more business are what they are looking for.If anyone is helping them get more sales,i dont think they will have problem paying lots of money.

      After establishing myself as a good provider,it should be same as paying someone who comes and meets them.
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      • Profile picture of the author Kelly Verge
        Certainly. I didn't say it wasn't possible, only that it's more difficult.

        When I have a business refer me to someone else, when I walk in the door I'm already positioned as an expert. It makes the sales meeting easier for me - and the prospect doesn't balk at my rates as much as happens with a "cold" prospect.

        I even get some of the same benefits when meeting with prospects from a seminar.

        Long-distance, you'll just have to work a little harder to keep from being seen as a simple service provider rather than a business consultant.

        Lots of people do this business long-distance, and I'm sure it will work for you, too.


        -K



        Originally Posted by apocrypha View Post

        I think its better to start at a lower rate and after showing them the results,go for big money.

        After all,results and more business are what they are looking for.If anyone is helping them get more sales,i dont think they will have problem paying lots of money.

        After establishing myself as a good provider,it should be same as paying someone who comes and meets them.
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  • Profile picture of the author Rachel Embry
    Absolutely! Just put together a marketing/consulting package OR specialize in 1 thing (like video marketing). Put your offer together, write a salesletter & mail it to prospects.

    You could also call them, email them, etc.
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  • Profile picture of the author badboy_Nick
    Originally Posted by apocrypha View Post

    Is it possible to provide 'Top Notch' consulting services to offline businesses without having to meet the prospect? Maybe providing services to some business from other states or other countries?

    Thank you.
    I doubt you will find this a smart strategy for success if you are pitching to OFFLINE companies. Every consultant I know who works with offline businesses ALWAYS meets them in person ... working at their company for a limited amount of time.

    Nick
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  • Profile picture of the author Jagged
    Why not hire someone to do the local outside sales & lead generation for you on a commission basis? Could have national & local clients that way...with no contact by you......it's done all the time...

    ~ken
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    • Profile picture of the author apocrypha
      Originally Posted by Jagged View Post

      Why not hire someone to do the local outside sales & lead generation for you on a commission basis? Could have national & local clients that way...with no contact by you......it's done all the time...

      ~ken
      Yes,i have read that somewhere.But how do i start?Where do i find these people?
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  • Profile picture of the author Nic Lynn
    My approach is to position myself as a consultant/trusted resource/revenue generation coach (or whatever equally irrelevant buzzword you want to apply). The point is that I am a partner to the local business... it is much easier to achieve that status (and develop a personal relationship) with some actual facetime.

    I can almost guarantee you that the REAL money in offline and local marketing comes from face-to-face investments.

    Now, you could make that up in transactional volume of course. For example, you could become an expert at video for $100 a pop, then sign-up 1000 businesses via faceless marketing. I just prefer to get to that same end $$$ figure with 10 clients instead of 1000.

    Personally, in this niche of IM, I have never met a customer that was comfortable writing a big check every month without being able to shake a real hand.
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  • Profile picture of the author Toby Lewis
    If you're chasing the big bucks offline the client needs to be wowed by your confidence and enthusiasm. You really should be meeting with them, otherwise you're no different to the 10000s of other websites or cold callers offering marketing services.
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  • Profile picture of the author Mark Riddle
    apocrypha,

    I have clients that I've never met in person, and have only met by phone, and I can tell you first hand there has to be a lot more work at building trust and rapport when you don't meet face to face.

    Even after being recommended by their business coach, I still have to do a lot more work at building confidence.

    You will need someone who has a strong sales background to do your face to face.

    Many recommend that people find straight commission sales folks, personally I don't think that's the best advice for someone just starting out.

    The people with the skills that you need to grow your business are not going to be looking to work for straight commission for a company without a track record of sales.

    It may not be what you want to hear, but there is so much involved in building a relationship with the client, that sending a unskilled person to represent your company is risky at best.

    No matter who you talk to for sales ALWAYS ASK THIS ONE QUESTION....

    "Do you normally sell packages in the $10k to 50K price range to CEO's or Business owners?"

    "And if you do, what is the length of your normal sales cycle to close the deal?"

    You generally get blank stares or quiet on the other end of the phone..

    If they fail this question it's time to say NEXT!

    Mark Riddle
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  • Profile picture of the author fasteasysuccess
    Not hard at all my friend once you position yourself right. I provide SEO, Copywriting, and Marketing Consulting, and would say 99% of my clients are nationwide without ever meeting them in person and done by phone and email.

    By providing value, providing testimonials, and top notch service you will quickly see how fast and easy it can take place. You need to learn as much as possible from people doing what you want to do and take action.

    Why should they pick you or over someone in their town or state? That's what you need to come up with and express that.
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  • Profile picture of the author Gary King
    I've done it numerous times.

    It takes a reputation (or a lot of B.S. up front). Not saying you can't do it without people to vouch for your abilities, but it certainly makes it easier if you have those folks on hand.

    IMHO you at least have to have a good phone manner and be at ease when conversing with the client so you can connect.

    And mostly, as others have said, nothing beats a good handshake. The relationship with clients that I had for extended periods became even stronger when I finally was able to arrange a face to face meeting with them.
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