What should I charge for consulting?

March 18, 2020

Consulting is hard regardless of the industry you are in. For architects, engineers, and contractors, it’s no different. You bring a wealth of knowledge to the project and to your clients… many times to prospects. In fact, you likely give your time and talents away much too frequently. Do you see this as a marketing expense? Probably so, but it’s something clients should pay for and in the end, they do. They just don’t see it line itemed in the contract or the invoice.

Consulting is defined as “the business of giving expert advice to other professionals, typically in financial and business matters.” It’s your education, knowledge and experience all wrapped up in one to deliver the best service in your field of expertise. As a marketer, I experience this frequently. My favorite question, which many of you have probably heard, is “Can I take you to lunch or buy you a cup of coffee to pick your brain?” No thanks, my 15 years of marketing in the design and construction industry is more valuable than a $15 lunch. I do enjoy lunch, don’t get me wrong. But the idea of someone monopolizing your talents and experience shouldn’t be tolerated. It’s a fine line to walk and, to be honest, one I haven’t figured out either. If you have, call me. I’d love to “pick your brain” about that.

Consulting is hard to put a dollar amount on, because you have a genuine desire to help people. I love helping people and companies with their marketing and business development. I love to see people succeed. Things that come naturally easy to me — like social media and networking — are skills of mine that are valuable traits. When helping clients with these and other marketing areas, my years of knowledge, experience, and research equate to me sending you an invoice. For those long-standing clients, it’s part of the service I provide. How is that fair to my committed, loyal clients who value my knowledge and experience if I essentially give it away to those who want free advice, aka “picking my brain?” It’s not fair but unfortunately, it’s reality.

I’d love to hear from you if you’ve figured out a way to overcome this challenge. I believe many in the consulting industry struggle with this very issue.

Nu marketing consults in the design and construction industry on all things marketing and business development. Contact us today to learn more about how we can help you. You can “pick our brain” about all things marketing and business development when it comes to the design and construction industry.