On Competitive Advantages and other Buzzwords…
Time for a mini-rant, against advice often promoted by those wanting to sell you something.
For years, it was very popular in marketing circles to identify your USP (Unique Sales Proposition.) Large management consulting firms and their MBAs loved the term.
Later, that morphed into the UBP (Unique Buying Proposition) as the marketers realized the focus should be on the customer, not the product or service. At least it was a start.
Today, I read yet another marketing blog post that emphasized more buzzwords. (Be Unique, be the Thought Leader, blah, blah, blah…) The post segued into Positioning, Differentiation, Branding, etc. It even offered a comprehensive course on the topics.
But does all this apply to the small consulting firm? Often not, in my opinion. In fact, I suspect the overemphasis on buzzwords may prevent some considering consulting from actually jumping in. Paralysis by analysis.
Consider a surgeon. Does he/she need to be unique — the only specialist in the field or the most highly renowned surgeon in the world? Of course not. The surgeon simply needs to be able to help the patient. Isn’t that what consulting is all about?
Like the overworked Thought Leadership term, these attributes are not be necessary to start a small consulting firm. All you really need is Visibility & Credibility. These can be easily achieved with a bit of effort and some simple lead generation techniques.
So don’t let the fear of not being Unique, Differentiated, or Positioned stop you. While the buzzwords may apply to large consulting firms, they may not apply to you.
Pick your niches, start your marketing, and jump in. Time better spent than mastering another buzzword.
<End of rant>
P.S. Still not sure? Jump in part-time as a side-hustle. I did that for almost ten years, which greatly facilitated my full-time JumpToConsulting thirty years ago.
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