Every consultant needs a steady stream of consulting leads in order to succeed. Securing clients is the single most important part of growing your business, so creating a plan to find new leads is vital. Using a variety of methods to find consulting leads will result in a larger pool of prospective clients, and allow you to work with your ideal customers.
Why You Need a Steady Stream of New Consulting Leads
In order to create a continuous income stream in client-based work, it is necessary to always know your next step. While you are working hands-on with one group of clients, you should also be working to line up your next group of customers. Consulting leads do not always work out, so having multiple opportunities at once gives you a buffer to keep your business running smoothly.
15 Sure-Fire Methods To Find Clients
As noted above, the best way to build a steady stream of new consulting leads for your company is to use a variety of strategies, working in tandem. Of course, you can't do everything at once. Below are 15 different ways that consultants can successfully find new leads. Start by picking 2 or 3 different tactics, then once those are working for you, expand and try a few more:
#1: Search Engines / SEO
Google is still king when it comes to the internet, and having a website that ranks high in search engine results will significantly increase your consulting leads. If you are working within a certain city, or a particular niche, further optimizing your website for SEO for those search terms will help you come out on top for people actively searching for your services.
#2: Paid Social Media Advertising
Running ads still serves a purpose when it comes to finding new clients. While not everyone responds to paid advertising, it is still beneficial to gain exposure through programs such as Facebook ads. Facebook allows you to laser focus on your ideal client, so you may find your most aligned consulting leads come from this method.
#3: Short “How To” Videos in Your Niche
Since 74% of Americans use Youtube, posting niche-specific content is a logical step in recruiting consulting leads. Youtube is a great way to improve your overall footprint on the internet, and you know the people who watch your videos are already interested in your topic.
Youtube has recently launched “Youtube Shorts,” which allows you to create 60-second informational videos, similar to Tiktok. These are incredibly useful, as you can repurpose content across Tiktok, Instagram Reels, and Youtube to reach a larger audience.
#4: Local Networking Events
Networking events are an excellent way to make industry-specific connections. Events that help you make yourself known in the community can connect you with both potential referrers and potential business partnerships.
#5: Seek Referrals
As people are more willing to trust a business when their friends or family have given it positive reviews, referrals should make up a high percentage of your consulting leads. If your client base is local, use networking events to get referrals from colleagues. If you work remotely and have a wider audience, implementing a referral program or working with social media influencers can significantly increase your visibility.
#6: Speak at Conferences
Speaking at conferences is a quick way to fast-track your business. Not only do you have the attention of a room full of people, you may be able to record your presentations and post them to Youtube. If you have access to the footage of your speech, you can also edit the video down to the most important moments and post a short video on social media. This will double your exposure for half of the work, as well as give viewers a sample of who you are and what you stand for.
#7: Offer Free Online Webinars
Free webinars are a fantastic way to give potential clients a sample of your services. Providing value-packed content allows you to position yourself in your niche. Since viewers have to actively sign up for your webinar, you are giving value to a warm audience, and collecting contact information for a new set of client prospects. (For more on this strategy, read How to Find Clients Online Using Webinars).
#8: Get Interviewed on Podcasts in Your Niche
Getting interviewed on an established podcast is a great way to reach an interested audience. Experienced podcasters have done the legwork of creating an interested, engaged audience that values what they have to say. When a listener hears you speaking, you’re combining the benefits of both conferences (a large, engaged audience) and referrals (people being introduced to you by a trusted third party).
#9: Start Your Own Podcast, and Invite Your Ideal Clients to Be Interviewed
While starting your own podcast takes some preparation and planning, establishing a loyal listener base can be a long-term method of gaining customers. Podcast content is usually evergreen and new listeners can engage with your content in whichever way suits their needs. (If you're going to try your hand at starting your own podcast, my recommendation is to use Buzzsprout – note, this is an affiliate link).
#10: Strategic Partnerships
One great way to find new consulting leads is by creating strategic partnerships. This means finding other companies who are offering services to the same types of customers as yours, but who are offering different services than you do, and then partnering with them so that you can offer your services to their customer list, and they can offer their services to your customer list. Strategic partnerships can be a real win / win for you and your partners in your industry.
#11: Network on LinkedIn
LinkedIn provides a platform for networking with professionals and clients in your niche. Providing content on the platform for clients will help attract these clients to you. Make sure you have a complete, well-developed profile, and spend time making lots of connections on the site to help clients understand that you are a trusted figure in your field of expertise.
#12: Write E-Books and Sell Them on Amazon
It is easier than ever to self-publish using Amazon. Creating an e-book directly targeting your ideal client’s pain points can help create solid consulting leads. (For more information on how to do this, read How to Write a Bestselling E-Book).
#13: Release a Free White Paper
Free white papers can be a beneficial marketing strategy for solo consultants and freelancers. Proving yourself as an authority in the field is an excellent method of enhancing your business. Plus, if you require an e-mail address in order to download the whitepaper, it will become a great lead magnet for your marketing efforts.
#14: Join Your Local Chamber of Commerce
If you are seeking business in your local town or region, why not join your area’s Chamber of Commerce? It may produce more opportunities than you think. Making yourself known and continuing to network on the local level will increase the number of consulting leads that enter your funnel.
#15: Answer Questions on Quora
Quora results rank high on Google searches, and they are a great way to answer questions in an authoritative capacity. The key to generating prospective contracts is establishing your name as a trusted, knowledgeable resource on the site, and then giving comprehensive answers to questions that are asked in your niche.