The Consultancy Edge: Leveraging Positioning to Attract Premium Clients & Opportunities

This post was originally published on this site

In the world of entrepreneurial consulting, standing out is not just a luxury—it’s a necessity.

Boutique consultancy firms, with their nimbleness and specialized expertise, have a unique advantage.

Yet, many struggle to attract the right clients.

The key? Positioning.

By differentiating yourself in the market, you can attract better-fit clients and unlock unparalleled opportunities.

In this article, I’ll show you how to position your consulting business so that you stand out — and attract more clients as a result.

The Compounding Effect of Great Positioning

Positioning isn’t just about being different—it’s about being different in a way that matters to your target audience.

When you nail your positioning, a domino effect ensues:

  • Attract More Eyeballs: With clear positioning, your content resonates with the right audience. It’s like a beacon, drawing in those who align with your values and expertise.
  • Convert Interest into Opportunities: A resonant buyer is an engaged buyer. They’re more likely to reach out, eager to explore how your consultancy can address their unique challenges.
  • Seal the Deal: When prospects feel seen and understood, they’re more likely to trust your solutions and convert into loyal clients.

For example, let’s consider Dr. Emma Reynolds, a management consultant with a PhD in organizational behavior.

Instead of marketing herself as a general management consultant, Dr. Reynolds positions herself as “The Millennial Workforce Expert.”

This precise positioning allows her to target a specific challenge many businesses face today: understanding, managing, and maximizing the potential of their younger employees.

Positioning isn’t just about being different—it’s about being different in a way that matters to your target audience.

Lower Price Resistance

Without clear positioning, you risk being seen as just another consultancy.

This perception can lead to clients undervaluing your services, resulting in constant negotiations and reduced profit margins.

Over time, this can erode your consultancy’s value and reputation.

Achieving Lower Price Resistance:

  • Articulate Value Over Price: Emphasize the unique benefits and results clients can expect from your services. Make it clear that they’re not just paying for a service, but for a tailored solution that addresses their specific needs.
  • Showcase Testimonials and Case Studies: Real-world examples of your consultancy’s success can validate your pricing. When potential clients see the tangible results others have achieved, they’re more likely to see the value in your pricing.
  • Educate Your Prospects: Use content marketing, workshops, and webinars to educate prospects about the complexities and nuances of what you offer. An informed client is more likely to appreciate the value behind your pricing.

For example, consider a digital transformation consulting form “BridgeTech.” The firm specializes in helping retailers integrate new technology into their outdated business infrastructures.

Prior to engaging with BridgeTech, a retailer struggled with outdated inventory systems.

After the consultancy’s intervention, the retailer saw a 30% increase in inventory accuracy and a 15% boost in sales due to better stock availability.

Using their positioning and powerful case studies, BridgeTech is able to command consulting fees based on the value they provide (instead of competing on price with all of the other undifferentiated firms).

Invalidating Competing Consulting Offers

If you don’t differentiate your consultancy, you become part of the “me too” crowd.

Prospects will find it challenging to distinguish your services from competitors, leading to lost opportunities and a diluted brand presence.

Achieving Invalidated Competing Offers:

  • Identify Your Unique Selling Proposition (USP): What sets your consultancy apart? It could be a proprietary methodology, specialized expertise, or a unique approach to client collaboration.
  • Avoid Generic Language: Phrases like “best quality” or “top-tier service” are overused. Instead, be specific about what you offer and how it benefits the client.
  • Position Against Pain Points: Understand the common frustrations clients have with other consultancies and position your firm as the solution to those pain points.

For example, consider Clarity Coaching client Mike DeLong, founder of Projex Consultants.

His USP — or “Magnetic Message” — is as follows:

“Projex Consultants has helped potato processors around the world execute complex capital projects up to $350M USD by applying our EPCM+ Framework and proven project management methodologies.”

The uniqueness, specificity, and targeting of exact pain points help his firm invalidate competing offers from other process consultants — especially among his ideal clients (potato processors).

If you don’t differentiate your consultancy, you become part of the “me too” crowd.

Other Key Benefits of Positioning For Consultants & Consulting Firms

  • Enhanced Reputation: Over time, clear positioning can cement your reputation in the industry. You become the go-to consultancy for specific challenges or sectors.
  • Streamlined Marketing: With a clear understanding of your positioning, marketing becomes more straightforward. You know who you’re speaking to and what messages will resonate.
  • Increased Referrals: Happy clients who feel uniquely served are more likely to refer others in their network, amplifying your reach.

(If you’d like to see more examples of well-positioned consultants and consulting firms, check out the Clarity Coaching case studies)

Summary: 5 Actionable Steps for Boutique Consultancies Who Want Better Positioning

  1. Audit Your Current Positioning: Take a step back and evaluate how you’re currently perceived in the market. Is this in line with how you want to be seen?
  2. Define Your Unique Value Proposition (UVP): What do you offer that no one else does? This isn’t just about services but also values, approach, and expertise.
  3. Know Your Audience: Understand the challenges, needs, and desires of your target clients. Positioning is as much about them as it is about you.
  4. Consistent Messaging: Ensure that all your content, from your website to social media, reflects your positioning. Consistency reinforces recognition.
  5. Close the Feedback Loop: Regularly check in with clients and prospects to ensure your positioning remains relevant and resonant.

In the end, positioning is about clarity—clarity in who you are, who you serve, and the unique value you bring.

For boutique consultancy firms, this clarity is the edge that can unlock premium clients and opportunities.

Embrace it, and watch your consultancy thrive.

Matt Hodkinson is Founder and Chief MEHscapologist at TGO. Matt has worked directly with more than 250 consultancies, managed service partners, and other B2B organizations over the past 13+ years, helping them to “escape their ordinary” and realize their full growth potential, without the need to become a high-volume content production outfit.

Skip to content