The professionals who can do you the most good in the shortest period of time aren’t peers – they’re advisors. I’m talking about consultants, the people whose job it is to help you earn more money, save more time, get more clients, stand out from the crowd, push your business, and take it to the next level.
Freelancers avoid consultants. They often think they can’t afford consultants in the first place. Money isn’t always pouring in, competition is tough and gigs can be hard to win. So they try to be do-it-yourselfers, learning from blogs, ebooks, and other sources of free information.
That’s great, but here’s are the problems with that kind of thinking: You have to figure out how to apply that information to your business. You’ll need the time to figure it out. And if you’re short on money, you’re definitely short on time. You also don’t actually have the expertise you need to figure out the best way to use that information, and you’re likely to screw it up.
Those screw-ups cost you money.
It’s better to hire a consultant. Consultants have a mission, and it’s to figure out the right strategy for your business. They’re experts, they know how to apply the principles to different companies and different people, and they can make sure you don’t make any costly mistakes.
In fact, the expertise of consultants is going to make you money. If you hire a good consultant, you’ll get back what you paid that person several times over in new clients or sales for your business.
It’s called making an investment. And it’s time more freelancers got on board.
A consultant’s job isn’t to soak up your cash. It’s to get you new clients, new projects, new referrals and better success – quickly. That’s the big point here. Most freelancers put off hiring a consultant because they don’t think they can afford one – so they keep scrimping along with their hopeful strategies for months, even years.
Meanwhile, that professional consultant could have showed the freelancer a new strategy that made an extra thousand dollars every month – more than enough to pay for the consultant’s fee and still have lots left over.
Even better? Consultants can do that in a week. Sometimes a day. Sometimes even in just an hour.
Let’s recap that: If you don’t hire a consultant, your financial situation doesn’t improve. If you do hire a consultant, you put up a fee in advance, and your financial situation does improve. Permanently. Not just this month, but every month thereafter.
Freelancers do have one theory right, though: Good consultants aren’t cheap. Personally, I set aside $500 to $1,500 to start with.
I know. Setting aside $500 and then spending that money on something other than that flat screen TV you were eyeing is hard. It doesn’t sound appealing. It’s not immediately gratifying. What we get from that expense isn’t tangible. It’s just… advice and more work.
Here’s the thing: That advice and that work are specifically designed to make you more money. The consultant’s mission is to bring you some serious dollars for your investment. Their whole career is about taking your $500 and turning it into $1,500 – not just once, but many times over – and with a lot less effort and much faster than you could trying to figure it out on your own.
Think about the kind of flat screen TV you could get for yourself then.
Most freelancers think they have to hire a consultant for the long haul, so they don’t hire anyone if they feel they can’t pay for a consult that month, the next, and the one after.
Here’s a newsflash: Most consultants can give you tangible results in a single session. A website critique, a business consult, or a copywriting audit gives you a substantial report packed with info and suggestions for improvements for one a flat fee.
Some experts may want to tune in and adjust your strategy now and then, or check in to see how you’re doing and where they could suggest tweaks that create even more impact, but even that doesn’t need to be a monthly expense. You can work with a consultant to get a schedule and a billing cycle that works for both of you. This doesn’t have to be a drain.
If you really can’t afford to hire a consultant right now, then make it a goal to be able to afford it soon. Start setting aside 10% of your earnings from every project you work on. Even people working at 5$ articles can use this method. Start building up that pot of money to hire an expert.
Then hire one. And you’ll find out that their advice was worth every penny – because your profits increase.