Marketing Planning for Consultants

th:: There are many ways of marketing your consulting services. But first, make sure you have a plan! Similar to planning a vacation, you have to know where you are going before you make your specific plans. How could you choose your choice of travel, and what to do once there, without knowing where you are going? Likewise, before using the tactics of marketing, make sure you know where you are going before you plan how to get there.

Be clear about what services are you providing. Think about what solution you provide, not just what exact service. You might provide writing and editing, but you are helping clients get their message out in the best way possible. You might manage a marketing automation system, but you are helping your clients engage and move prospects through the sales funnel. A financial consultant helps people make the most of their money. Remember to think about “What’s in it for them” rather than what you do.

Next, who are your best clients? With limited time on your hands, you want to target your best prospects. Make sure you understand them. How do they learn about news? What do they do during work? After work? Make sure you know how they think, do work, prefer to learn.

Once you understand them, then you can determine how to reach these clients. If you are targeting doctors, perhaps they are not on social media, but on a special physician community or read medical news instead. New moms may not be attending many events, but may be on Instagram or Pinterest and searching for mommy tips on specific blogs. Be clear who your customers are, understand their ways of getting information, and then, create your marketing plan that fits your audience.

Finally, what is your message to them? What value do you bring? What problems do they have, and how can you solve them? What is your position in the market against other consultants? Figure out your differentiation, and their needs, and then you can build messages which show them you deliver benefits to them.

By doing strategic marketing planning, you can be sure you are targeting the right prospects, delivering solutions that meet their needs, and communicating to them in ways they use, and with messages that matter.

About Deborah Henken

A former president of WIC, Deborah Henken has 20 years of management and marketing experience with companies ranging from Fortune 500 companies to start-ups to educations and non-profits. She spent seven years as head of marketing for Learning@Cisco. Earlier, she ran the Highland Team, a strategic marketing consulting firm. Deborah’s focus is on 1) how to keep your clients extraordinarily happy with your services, 2) how to use your network to grow your business, and 3) how to build your team, hire contractors, and create partnerships.


  1. Great Post, Deborah!

    I am clear on all of these things and have a plan, yet I struggle to get the marketing done. Blog posts are a time-suck — I am forever editing! Currently, I think getting out of my office to write my posts and hiring a writer to refine and finish my drafts might be the way to go… Any tips?

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