You need a business model more than a new website

If you’ve ever seen the movie Field of Dreams then you’ll be familiar with the mantra “build it and they will come.”

It’s a great line. But it’s terrible business advice if you happen to be a consultant or professional speaker.

You can have the flashiest website on the planet, but if your business model is flawed then it won’t make a lick of difference to your bottom line.

I’ve seen some very smart people who spent a lot of money on websites that just tell others that they happen to be very smart people.

And if you’ve found a way to monetize people thinking you’re a very smart person – that’s awesome.

But most prospects hire based on the added value or skills a consultant brings to the table – not how smart they are.

[bctt tweet=”People hire consultants based on the added value or skills they bring to the table.” username=”@aidancrawford”]

I’ve worked with clients who have terrible websites and have no trouble finding work. I’ve also worked with clients with amazing websites and struggle to make their businesses work at all.

So what’s the difference? It’s a business model that matches expertise to a highly defined pool of prospects who are willing to pay for it.

When somebody goes into consulting or speaking as a profession, it’s usually because they have knowledge or skills that are marketable. So they go about building out a website like it’s a fancy resume. This means prospects have to look really deeply into the listed skillsets to figure out if they fill the holes they need plugged.

Of course nobody tells you this when you’re just starting out. So when business isn’t coming in as fast as you expect, you begin to doubt the value of your offering. But really it’s just a case of broken messaging.

What successful consultants and speakers to do is think of themselves not as very smart people, but really smart investments for their clients. They suppress the urge to self-promote and use every element of their website to sell their value proposition to the people most likely to hire them.

So why is this on my mind now? For a long time I avoided website development for people other than my monthly retainer clients. I was frustrated by the lack of control over the messaging and I didn’t want to deliver something that I ultimately didn’t think was going to help.

Earlier this year I put together a business and marketing coaching program to help consultants and speakers who’d been in the business from 0-5 years put all the pieces together in order to create a sustainable business model that could grow and become more profitable over time.

I also started building websites for speakers I knew and respected – and who already had business models in place I believed in.

While attending the National Speakers Association earlier this summer I was chatting to a new speaker with very specific expertise and who was fuzzy on who her audience should be. After spending about 15 minutes we figured out who would be most likely to pay for her expertise.

She needed a website. But I didn’t want to simply build a site and cut her loose. So I combined my 12 week marketing coaching program with a new website at a big discount.

The idea being that by the time we’re done, she should have all the tools in place to make her business work.

It was a breakthrough for me. Combining these two desperately needed services into a single discounted package (that costs a lot less than what some people pay for just a single website) could help a lot more people actually achieve their goals.

So before you drop big bucks on a new website take some time to understand who it is that will pay for your expertise and then develop your new site based on writing for them.

If you want to see if this package could help your business, I have it all scoped out on this page.

If you have any questions about your business model or how I might be able to help you send me an email or give me a call.

Aidan Crawford

Aidan Crawford is president of Short Circuit Media. His main job is helping consultants, trainers and professional speakers get their marketing in order by creating and implementing strategies to help them reach their target audiences.


Let’s have a quick chat about your marketing goals and see how I can help.
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