Can you give your expertise with no strings attached?
Here’s an idea: If you want to sell your expertise, first give it away. If you want people to pay you for your wisdom or knowledge or understanding, start by giving them some really good free samples! Share what you know, with no strings attached. In that way you develop your reputation as an expert. When people want to hire a consultant or engage an instructor or contract with an expert for specific services, they will already have a pretty good idea what you can do – maybe they’ll think of you.
My recommendation is to find the spaces where your target audience hangs out (blogs, magazines, conferences and conventions, newsletters, podcast and webinar series…) and get yourself connected to a decision maker there. And then just offer your wisdom, skills and knowledge in the form of free articles, presentations, educational sessions, and such.
Be scrupulous about giving without “selling.” Avoid the temptation to plug your own business or try to arrange the information in a way that leads to the conclusion that they must hire you. Give it away; that’s how you build trust. I guarantee, if you impress them with your expertise, they’ll write down your contact information and seek you out when they need that sort of help.
Give it a try, and let us know how it works. Even better, if you’ve already had some experience in this method of building business, please share your story.