Marketing Consultants thrive at finding creative ways of solving problems, improving efficiencies and optimizing their business opportunities. Marketing Consultants looking to advance their careers are always exploring new ways to attract clients, improve their online presence, and network with peers and industry experts.
To accomplish these lofty expectations, a marketing consultant needs to be creative yet tactical. If you’re navigating this career path, consider the following ways to develop your skills and build a solid marketing consultant business.
Complete Competition Analysis
A crucial component of creating any marketing plan is completing a competitive analysis first. In most cases, this starts by analysing the competition. So why should it be any different for building a marketing consultant career? Any competitive analysis should contain the following:
- Determine who is your competition. Find 5 to 10 other marketing consultants in your area and review important items about their business. How many employees do they have, what services do they offer clients, or what is their bandwidth? The key is to gain a general understanding of their scope and business structure.
- Continually seek out new data: The best marketing consultants understand that things change over time. To that effort, always search for new ways of collecting information about your clients, such as different social media feeds or internal firm reports (if they happen to be available to the public).
Understand Your Clients’ Operational Structure
Before you begin a working relationship with your new clients, make sure you have a solid understanding of who is who within the organisation. It’s always best to start at the top with the management or executive leadership team, just in case you happen to connect with them in the cafeteria or restroom. You can usually find executive profiles on LinkedIn or on the company website.
Review Previous Clients Projects
It’s quite possible that your new client has worked with previous marketing agencies or consultants in the past. If they have collected data on previous projects, why not take advantage of that information before starting a new project? This will provide you with a blueprint of what worked in the past and what has not. It’ll allow you to better strategise without having to reinvent the wheel.
Organise your Point of Contacts
A good Marketing Consultant proactively sets them self-up for success. Before you begin a project, always collect a list of all stakeholders within the project and gain their contact information. Include their emails and mobile numbers. Take this information, create a new contact, and store it in your cell phone, tablet, laptop, and all other communication devices. This will allow you to be the go-to individual for contact information and reduce lag-time if information is quickly needed.
Collect Information about Local Entertainment or Dinner Options
You’d be surprised how often a marketing consultant is asked to set up team development meetings or corporate events. The best Marketing Consultants have a unique way of finding the perfect restaurant, convention centre, or any other location to host a company function. If you’re going to be working with a certain client, complete a review of suitable locations to host these types of events near the client’s office space.
Make sure the location represents both your and your client’s brand and style but won’t break the bank. Verify that the facility is close to public transportation or is easy to access by taxi or rideshare. While restaurant-worthy opportunities might not happen every night, you’ll want to be prepared in case they do.
Become an Organisation Ninja
Marketing Consultants always take the lead on document storage and retention. In many cases, the client will provide you with access to a Google Doc or cloud-based storage network for project-specific documents, imagery, videos, and more. However, you should always go the extra mile by organizing these files and vital information in easy to access sub-folders. This will permit you to easily access information when you need it and provide easier access to other stakeholders when they’ve ‘lost the files’ or other important information.
Proofread Everything Before Using
Even if the client has provided you with pre-written documents to be used in a presentation, take the proactive step of proofreading everything. Sometimes the client will make accidental grammatical mistakes. With so many items on their list, this crucial step may have been omitted.
To reduce the potential of embarrassment on their part, be proactive by proofreading anything use both n public and private meetings. This includes everything you create as well. The last thing you want is a client or their client bring up type-o’s in a presentation that you’re responsible for creating.
Develop Strong Relationships with the Entire Team
It is important not to neglect assistants and other team members that may not be as vocal or visibly the face of the company. The proactive and smart marketing consultant goes above and beyond to introduce themselves to all team members that are present at meetings and involved in relevant projects and develops strong relationships with them. It’s quite possible that you’ll work with those other employees occasionally. Developing a strong repour and gaining a new perspective can be both beneficial to you and the project in general.
If you’re a new or existing Marketing Consultant, you should also consider insurance options for your business.