Podcast

Episode: 59 |
Tsavo Neal:
Consulting Websites:
Episode
59

HOW TO THRIVE AS AN
INDEPENDENT PROFESSIONAL

Tsavo Neal

Consulting Websites

Show Notes

Our guest today is Tsavo Neal, who has thought hard about how consultants can generate more client leads with their website.

Tsavo has written dozens and dozens of posts on this topic and you can find all his work on his website, tsavoneal.com, which is a valuable resource.

He’s got examples of best-practice consulting websites, dozens of specific ideas on how to raise your visibility, tips on how to convert website visitors into leads, and much more.

Tsavo has  many valuable insights on marketing professional services, and I hope you find the discussion valuable.

One weekly email with bonus materials and summaries of each new episode:

Will Bachman: Our guest today is Tsavo Neal who has thought hard about how consultants can generate more client leads with their website. Tsavo has written dozens and dozens of posts on this topic. You can find all of his work on his website, tsavoneal.com, which is a valuable resource. That’s spelled T-S-A-V-O-N-E-A-L dot com, and of course, the link is in the show notes. He’s got examples on his website of best practice consulting websites. He has dozens of specific ideas on how to raise your visibility, tips on how to convert website visitors into leads, and much, much more. Tsavo has many valuable insights on marketing professional services, and I hope you find the discussion valuable. Tsavo, welcome to the show.
Tsavo Neal: Thanks for having me on, Will.
Will Bachman: Tsavo, before we dive into consulting website design, which is what we wanted to focus on in this episode, tell us a little bit about your practice overall.
Tsavo Neal: In my business, I help independent management consultants and small management consulting firms generate new business and new leads to their website. Will, most of the consultants I talk to, I would say 80% to 95% of them tell me that they’ve never generated a single lead through their website. In my business, I want to change that for the better.
Will Bachman: Yeah, it’s probably consistent with my experience talking to folks. A lot of people say, “Well, I built a website. It’s a good validation technique. When clients hear about me, they can go and check it, and they can see I’m legit. I have all these whitepapers on there, and so forth.” Yeah, I certainly haven’t heard people talking about getting a lot of leads from their website.
Tsavo Neal: Right.
Will Bachman: Let’s dive into that. On your website, which is tsavoneal.com, that’s T-S-A-V-O-N-E-AL dot com, you’ve got a resources tab with The Ultimate Guide to Consulting Website Design.
Tsavo Neal: That’s right.
Will Bachman: Walk us through it. What are the main parts of that? You help guide the way here of walking someone through, maybe, either doesn’t have a website today, or has one, but they realized it’s not great. Walk us through how they should think about building a new one or improving what they’ve got.
Tsavo Neal: Okay. One of the things I’ve observed, Will, is that consultants are at one or four levels with their website. Level one is where they have no website. They don’t have the budget to do it themselves, or they don’t have the time and experience to do it themselves, or maybe they just have other ways of winning new business so they just forego the website altogether. Level two is a brochure website, and that’s the consulting website that has all of the information, develop their business, what they do, their experience, and I would say, most, four to five consultants are at the brochure level website, and most of these consultants don’t really win any business through their consulting website.
Level three is a lead-generating consulting website, and these websites, very few consultants have them, look a lot different than a brochure website because they’re basically an asset that hosts your intellectual property and thought leadership. You basically feed your expertise into that website, and in turn, prospects use that expertise to attract prospects to your website. Level four is an entire digital marketing and sales pipeline. That’s where every single line and pixel on your website is very deliberate. You build a website that’s a part of a larger marketing funnel.
In between levels two and three is something that I call the gap. The gap is where consultants, they’re interested in starting to generate leads and new business through their website, but they have no idea of how to do. Chapter one of my resources page, that basically, all the articles in there will give you a reference for how you can start thinking about how to use your website to generate new business. If you want to start on chapter one, how you should think about your website, I’m happy to start there.
Will Bachman: Okay. I’m looking at Chapter One: Planning Your Consulting Website, and a bunch of pieces that you’ve posted there like Inside the Mind of Your Prospects: 37 Critical Digital Marketing Statistics, and 22 Best Consultant Websites. You have some that you’ve highlighted that you think are great examples, so people can take a look at that, and How To Hire the Right Designer For Your Consulting Website. At this level, we’re thinking about someone who maybe has a brochure website.
Tsavo Neal: Right.
Will Bachman: For something like that … What would a brochure website include, typically?
Tsavo Neal: A brochure website typically includes … You know what? I’ll send you a link after and examples of consulting websites at each level. A brochure website typically includes about our business, our experience, our services, all of the language parroting off of David Fields’ right-side up concept. It’s all focused on the consultant or the firm instead of the prospect or the buyer. That’s the very characteristic of a brochure consulting website as well as the copy and design of the website.
Will Bachman: Okay.
Tsavo Neal: Like I said, I would estimate 80% to 95% of consulting website I’ve seen follow this type of model.
Will Bachman: Okay. Then talk to us about, for someone who’s in that position, what are the steps to go through to get from level two to level three, to actually getting a website that generates leads?
Tsavo Neal: Right. First place I would direct them to is I actually put all of the best practices of consulting website design into a free template, so you can see how it might be designed or how it might look. You can find that at consultantwebsitetemplate.com. What you’ll notice about this template I’ve built, first of all, all of the language is much more focused on the reader instead of your business. A quick rule of thumb would be to use the words you more than the words I. That just gives you a frame of reference you’re talking to your prospect instead of talking about yourself.
You won’t really find many of the same pages on a brochure website as you would a lead-generating website. A lead-generating website has an up-to-date articles or insights page where you are actually writing content or producing video and hosting that on your website. You’ll have a case studies page to show your prospects what their business looks like before you work with them, and what their business looks like after you work with them. One of my favorites is a resources page where not only do you just dump 20 blog posts on them, but you actually organize your blog posts into a book format, where it gives them a reason for why to start here and move your way through your content.
Basically, the lead-generating website is something that you think of as an asset where you put your thinking into your website and you use that to educate and help your prospects. When you do that, your traffic will go up, and you’ll have much more opportunities to educate. I like to think of my website as my relationship-builder because relationship-building to me is about providing value. Once you provide enough value, you earn the right to that relationship. Consultantwebsitetemplate.com, if you check that out, you’ll see how a lead-generating consulting website is typically set up.
Will Bachman: Great. Let’s walk through some of the steps that someone who, maybe they’ve put together a level two website. I mean, congratulations, right, even to have their website. A lot of folks don’t have website at all.
Tsavo Neal: Right. Right.
Will Bachman: You’ve taken the first step. That’s awesome. If you were going to work with someone or you’re just advising someone and they’re going to do it themselves, what is the first thing that someone should be doing if they want to take it to level three? Is it figuring out what whitepaper they’re want to write, or what services they want to offer, or maybe figuring out what specific customer they’re going after? What’s some of the first steps?
Tsavo Neal: Yup. One of the first things I would do before moving from level two to level three is doing just a bit of market research, and thinking about what your prospects care about at a high level, and how you can answer those questions using your website as a publishing platform. One thing that I did that really got me started on writing content was go to Quora. I think Quora is a very underrated tool for finding out what people actually want to know the answers to. I mean, are you going to find prospects there? Probably not, but you will find what people are interested in and what they want to know the answers to. Going through Quora and looking up the industry that you serve and finding questions there will give you a good starting point for the type of stuff you should be writing or producing videos on, so on and so forth.
In terms of what you should be feeding into your website, I’ve heard of David A. Fields’ book mentioned on your podcast a couple of times. I think what you want to do is you want to take his five marketing musts, which are writing, speaking, trade association, digital presence, and networking. Each of those has a digital equivalent, so writing would be content marketing if done online. Speaking would be podcasting and webinars is done online. Trade associations would be some sort of strategic partnerships or partnership marketing done online, and then networking would be inbound and outbound outreach. Figure out what your prospects are interested in, and that would give you a starting point for using the five marketing musts as to what you should be creating and hosting on your website if you want an asset. That will help you generate leads.
Will Bachman: To actually generate leads with the website, if you just have stuff that people can download, they may not necessarily reach out to you, and they’re like, “Thank you very much for this useful resource,” but you never hear from them. Do you recommend one of these things where it’s like you click on it, and it says, “Okay, give us your email, and we’ll email this document to you.”? How do you then actually capture the lead? What’s your recommendation there?
Tsavo Neal: Yeah. What you just mentioned there is what’s popularly known as a lead magnet. I think that’s one of the most important aspect of a consultant’s website is to think of an offering where you have an offering that helps educate your prospects about a certain problem or a certain topic they’re interested in, and what would make them purchase that offering using their name and email address? With a lead magnet, a certain percentage of your website traffic will actually give you their name and email address, and then they’re a qualified lead. You know what they’re interested in because they’ve given you their name and email address in order to access a certain resource.
I think whitepapers are good. My personal favorite is a five-day email course. Anything that you can think of that will help educate your prospect about a certain topic or a certain problem that’s relevant to them, tie them back to some of the market research I just talked about makes a great lead magnet. That’s one of the first steps for actually generating leads through your website.
Will Bachman: If you had a checklist to evaluate your website, what were some of the elements that you’re looking for then, just to see if it’s a level three, and helping people get there?
Tsavo Neal: One of the things I look for is how it’s structured. Brochure websites are very easy to spot because they typically have a … In their menu, they’ll say, “Our business, our services.” The biggest thing lacking from a level two website that distinguishes it from a level three website is thought leadership, and expertise, and ways to verify that. You can use your expertise, and it’s applicable to your business. When I’m looking at a level three website, common things are the lead magnet. The consultant has a podcast or frequent articles. They have case studies. Their contact page isn’t just a simple contact form. It actually offers a result coming from the consultation. The consultant who has a level three website is not shy about making use of the five marketing musts in order to promote their content because that’s a big part of it. You can’t expect to build a website of any level and just leave it there in order to attract leads. The second part comes down to promoting your content and getting it in front of prospects.
Will Bachman: Talk to me about that a little bit.
Tsavo Neal: Yeah. Again, I’m parroting David A. Fields’ five marketing must. I think that marketing for consultants done digitally comes down to building a mixture of marketing habits. Writing 25 words a day, tapping into your network, asking someone how their business is doing, reaching out to a new potential prospect or a potential strategic partnership, all of these things are things that you should be doing every day in order to keep up the momentum with your marketing system.
At first, if you’re not used to doing them every day, they might take you a couple hours. I’m speaking from experience here. After about a couple of months doing these every single day, I can knock all those tasks out in about 30 minutes. That’s helped me write over 150,000 words of value on my website. It’s helped me create an email course. I think it helps many consultants keep up the momentum with their marketing, and ensures that they’re actually using the website as opposed to just leaving it up on the web, expecting it to generate some inquiries.
Will Bachman: Yeah. Let’s go through some of the pieces that you’ve written on there. I’m looking at chapter two. Let’s talk about maybe several one of these. We can maybe start with part … We’ll start with part one, perfecting your homepage. Talk to me about perfecting your homepage. What should a good website homepage look like?
Tsavo Neal: Okay. The perfect consultant’s homepage is it does three main things. The first thing is that you want to demonstrate that you’re relevant to your prospect. The internet has shortened all of our attention span by many seconds. People will give you maybe three seconds to show that you’re relevant to them. The easiest way to do that is by using what’s commonly known as a USP. You have UVP or unique value proposition. The easiest way I found to do that is to say, “I help target vertical solve problem X,” and that does two things. It shows that you’re talking specifically to them, and you’re talking to them about something that they care about.
In my example, I help business consultants. A business consultant lands on my website. They see that I’m addressing them, and I’m not just a generalist who claims to help everybody. I’m talking about something about that who would work well with me is interested in generating leads through the website. The first part of your homepage, I recommend a picture of you so people can instantly see who you are and get a sense of … Just get a sense of who you are on a personal level, and then your UVP. You immediately demonstrate that you are relevant to them.
Moving down your homepage, you then want to show that you’re credible. The best way to do that is through various social proof elements. I think the most important one is testimonials from your previous clients. I think testimonials work best when they’re not just a glowing review. They actually talk about some of the hesitancy that your client had before hiring you and then talk about the benefit that you provided for them. Testimonials, logos of the companies you’ve worked with, logos of publications your work has been featured in. All of that, when it’s up there with the picture of you helps the prospect perceive you as an expert practitioner.
Then finally, on your homepage, you want to have elements, like your case studies and your articles to draw interests and draw them deeper into your website. People aren’t going to hire you just by looking at your website. Your website is meant to demonstrate relevancy, credibility, and then you want to interest them and pull them deeper into your website to your articles, your case studies, and all of your educational content. That, to me, is the perfect consultant’s website because it provides a good entry point for what are the next steps and what they should read next if they’re interested in learning how we can help them.
Will Bachman: Great. That’s the homepage. Any thoughts about the contact us page? I hate it when there’s a contact us form. It’s always so annoying, whereas I just want somebody’s email, copy and click on this email, copy and paste, so I can send an email. Do you have a point of view on what a great contact us looks like, maybe at the bottom of your homepage, or on a separate contact us page?
Tsavo Neal: Yeah. Like you said, I’m not a big fan of the generic name, email, subject, and message contact form because, usually, those are a bit of a black hole. You don’t even really expect a response when you see one of those. What I like to do is a simple form where I collect their name and email address, and I say, “You know what? If you want to hop on a call for 15 minutes, and I’ll give you three actionable items for benefit X or business outcome X, enter your name and email address, and you’ll get an email from me containing the next steps.” That’s much simpler than your average contact form.
Then, obviously, you would put your email address, or your LinkedIn page, or wherever else you would like them to contact you, but I think it’s a good idea to make a specific offer with your contact page. I see free consultation as one that consultants use a lot. Another thing you can do is, I don’t know if you’ve heard of Calendly, but Calendly makes it … It’s an app. It’s a web app that makes it very easy for prospects to schedule a time with you without that annoying back and forth that goes on through email. Then they can just select a time that’s most convenient for them. Then that automatically goes through to your email address, and you have the call all set up. That’s how I tackle the contacts page, and I think that’s a much better approach than your generic four-form field contact forms that you see so often.
Will Bachman: Let’s talk about part two from chapter two. You talked about homepage. Next one is showcase your services. Talk to me about your thoughts around the best way to showcase your services.
Tsavo Neal: Yeah, on most of the brochures, the websites that I see that have an our services page, it’s just this endless page of full of a description of this service. What I like to do with our services page is talk about the scenario that your prospects find themselves in before you talk about the service itself. That way, you give them a choose your own adventure with your services page, and it helps them identify with what service is best for them. The last thing you want to do is put 10 services with the generic jargon and copy that doesn’t really help them understand what’s the best fit for them. Instead, you want to talk about what’s going on in their business that would make them interested in your particular service.
Of course, if they can’t pick the one that’s right for them, your services page is a great place to put in a reserve my free consultation button so they can schedule a consultation with you and explore, which services is the right fit for them. I think those types of consultations are the best because you’re not just providing free advice. At this point, they’re actually interested in seeing how you guys can work together.
Will Bachman: Okay. Let’s talk about this next one that you mentioned previously, curating your resources. What does a great resources page look like? Maybe you have some examples from pages that you’ve seen, the resources that actually were really compelling to the clients?
Tsavo Neal: Right. Right. Yeah. I’ll send you those, and you can put them on the show notes. The thing with the resources page is if someone visits your articles page, you can have some interesting stuff on there, no doubt, but it’s hard for them to select what to read first. For example, with my resources page, you’ll notice that I have a lot of articles on there. I put all of my work up on my website, and what I did is I basically organized it so if someone who is interested in what I have to offer can know where to read first. What you want to do with your articles is organize them in a way that makes the most sense to your reader, and give them a guide on how to read through your content.
Another thing you want to do with your resources page is, eventually, if you have a clear target market, you can use your resources page to really offer some of your peer’s content on your resources page as well. It helps position you as a trusted advisor if you can collect all of the best resources and pages in your industry and link to them from your resources page. That makes it something that your prospects would bookmark because they know that when they go there, they can find relevant, helpful information. I’ll send you a few links of consulting website that have really good resources pages, and that’ll be a good place for listeners to check those out as well.
Will Bachman: Fantastic. Case studies, you talked a little bit about case studies, but what would be a great example of a case study, of a way to frame it?
Tsavo Neal: With case studies, I think that what you want to do is basically tell a story with your cast studies and paint a picture of how your client’s life, how their business looks before you worked with them, and then in the middle. That’s where you get to describe your process. Consultants are very interested in showcasing their process. I think they mistakenly do that on their homepage as opposed to one of their case studies. You can assume that when one of your prospects come to read your case studies. Then they’re interested in reading how you did it.
Case studies, I like to organize them in three different parts. The first part is the brief, where you talk about the client’s problem, how their business look before you worked with them. Then the second part is your approach, and that’s where you go deep into your entire process and how you solve the problem. Finally, the results, and that’s where you talk about the metrics and what you provided for them. I think following up your case study with a call to action. If you want to talk about how we can achieve these results in your business, so you can schedule a call with us right here, button. That’s how I think case studies are best positioned on your website. I think they’re a critical part of any consultant’s website because your expertise as a consultant, essentially, is your product. If you don’t use your website to showcase that expertise, then it’s not going to do you any help in generating new business and new interests.
Will Bachman: We talked a bit about this goal of generating leads, but let’s talk now about … Let’s say someone does fill out your form or just emails you, what then?
Tsavo Neal: Then it becomes about continually … Now that you have their name and email address, you want to continually provide value to them, and that is what I think earns you the right to that relationship. Once you have their name and email address, you commit to a weakly or a monthly newsletter. You can call it a nurturing sequence. You can call it marketing automation. Some of this you would do on a weekly basis. Some of it you want to have set up for each lead coming in. You might follow up with them using some automation a week from the time they download your lead magnet, a month, and then maybe three months or six months. Then when it comes to your weekly or monthly newsletter, there’s a bunch of ways you can do that. You can use it to promote your latest articles, your latest insights. You can just simply curate what you’re reading that month and what’s interesting to you. That’s a great way to provide value without necessarily writing new content.
Most email marketing software nowadays will actually tell you how your prospects are interacting with your website and interacting with your content. With something like ActiveCampaign, you can actually see what articles on your website that your prospects might be reading, or that they are reading, and you can use that as a starting point for an outbound or an inbound sales, outreach email. Once you have those leads, and once you start to build up a bit of an audience, you want to continue and nurture those relationships by providing value and providing them with insights that can help them improve their business.
Will Bachman: Yeah. Talk to me about these tools a little bit more. You called one ActiveCampaign?
Tsavo Neal: Right.
Will Bachman: How would I know, which pages of the website the person is going and checking and so forth? How does all that work?
Tsavo Neal: You’ll find that in your email marketing service software, an ActiveCampaign, or a MailChimp, or an Infusionsoft. I’m pretty sure all of them have this capability. As you start to generate these leads, in the software, you’ll find a list of contacts. By clicking on each of those contacts, once you integrated that into your website, it’ll actually tell you what articles they’re reading on your website, what links they’re clicking in your emails to them, what percentage of them are actually opening the emails, all of that extremely useful information for reaching out to these contacts. It’s much different than an outbound approach because you know that they’re interested in what they have to say. They haven’t unsubscribed yet, so they want to hear more from you. They want to learn more about what you can offer them. This software gives you some really relevant helpful information on what’s impacting your leads the most and how to reach out to them.
Will Bachman: Okay. What are the different software platforms that people should think about? You mentioned ActiveCampaign, MailChimp. What are some of the other leading ones that people should take a look at?
Tsavo Neal: I think ActiveCampaign is great. MailChimp is good. Drip is really good. All of the software transitioned into marketing automation as opposed to just email marketing software. The idea behind that is that once you collect these email addresses, you have a pre-written sequence that goes out to each of these leads. That’s an attractive idea because it sort of allows your consulting website to work around the clock even while you’re eating, while you’re sleeping, while you’re working client projects, you have that running in the background. That automation sequence helps showcase your expertise to your prospects without you having to do it yourself.
Will Bachman: You’d add people to your weekly or your monthly newsletter, and you’d also run them through this pre-written sequence that’s automated. Okay.
Tsavo Neal: Right. Right. Another thing on that, I think it’s important to get their name and their email address because addressing your prospects by name, even if it’s through your automated emails does a lot to help personalize your automation because there is a robotic element to it. If you can use their name … I’ve had on a couple occasions people respond to my emails, which is great. Your automation is fostering interaction with the prospect, but they actually feel as though my email was written just to them. I think that goes a long way to establishing trust and then building a real relationship through your prospect’s inbox.
Will Bachman: Okay. Any other thoughts about, once you’re creating this great lead magnet tool of a website, how to draw people to it?
Tsavo Neal: One of my favorite things to do is identify your top performing article. I know that there’s one article on my website, it’s my article on the best consulting website, that article alone generates nearly 60% of all of my website traffic. When you identify your top performing post, you want to create a lead magnet called a content upgrade for that specific post because you will know what the prospects visiting that post are interested in. If you can create a lead magnet specific to that post, you will see a conversion rate, typically, of 10% to 15% as opposed to a general conversion rate where you’re shooting for … This is for a website-wide lead magnet, you’re shooting for a 3% to 5% conversion rate.
Using a tool like Google Analytics to identify your top performing post, and then creating a content upgrade, which is basically a lead magnet for that post is a great way to really expand on how often you generate lead. Of course, when you know that they’re reading a particular piece of content on your website, you know what they’re interested in, and that arms you with very, very helpful information for reaching out to them.
Will Bachman: For that real piece of popular content, what would this content upgrade look like? What would you do?
Tsavo Neal: You can really do anything with it, but what you want to do is identify what you’re helping your prospect learn or understand from this piece of content, and then creating something that will upgrade on what they want to learn. A quick example of my article, I assume that when someone comes to my article on the best consultant website, they want to learn about how they can improve their website and have their best consultant websites. What I did was offer a free homepage template where I combine all the best practices from these websites and put it together as my lead magnet. That’s just one example. You can really do anything with it as long as it expands and upgrades on what the prospect want to learn from that particular piece of content.
Will Bachman: Got it. Once we develop this, your chapter three is about maximizing your digital presence. Give some highlights from that chapter?
Tsavo Neal: The chapter on maximizing your digital presence is all about promoting your content. If you’re a business owner, I don’t think there’s any way to escape it. I mean, if you’re introverted or extroverted, you have to actually promote your website and get it in front of your prospects. It’s all about the tactics. It’s all about how you can use LinkedIn to share your content. One of latest articles was on 64 ways that consultants can generate leads online. That really highlights all of the ways that they can use their website, and how they can get it in front of their prospects to generate traffic because that’s the next step. You need to actually generate traffic before you can actually turn some of that traffic into qualified leads.
Will Bachman: Okay. We haven’t really talked to the consultants out there who have not yet set up a website.
Tsavo Neal: Right.
Will Bachman: What’s your thought for them? Is it worthwhile to first try to set up a brochure website and bite that off? Does that provide more value than nothing, do you think, as sort of, at least, a credibility-building mechanism?
Tsavo Neal: It’s not obvious to me how a level two website is that much better than a level one website. I think it’s useful to … If you use my free consultant website template, just the example I have up that’s live, if you use that, you can set up what looks like the beginning of a lead-generating website, and then you can start to share your expertise and learn how to promote your content through your website. I think it’s very important for consultants to be proud of the design of their website because I’ve talked to a lot of consultants who I think that they’re hesitant to actually promote it and even share their thoughts through their website because they’re embarrassed about how it looks. It’s something that is becoming increasingly common to me. If you can, I would skip the brochure website. Think about creating a lead-generating website from the start in terms of how it’s designed and how it’s written. Make sure it’s something that fills you with confidence and that you actually want to go out and share with the world.
Will Bachman: Okay. Let’s say a person has made the decision to pull the trigger and to do it and to build a level three. What’s your advice to someone on how to find a website designer, and maybe give us some sense about how much you should expect to pay for a good designer to help you through this process?
Tsavo Neal: Right. I think the first thing about hiring a designer is that designers do a really, really bad job of explaining how they can help you. I mean, you don’t hire a designer to make your website look pretty. You hire a designer to meet a business goal. I think most designers, for better, for worse, describe themselves as creative. I don’t think consultants really appreciate that. They don’t have that need. What they do need is help generating leads and generating new business. You want to look for a designer who you can treat as a professional and is interested to help you reaching certain business goals.
In terms of investment, you get what you pay for. I mean, you can hire someone from India to do your website. It’s not going to be very good for as low as $25 an hour. If you’re looking for a complete done-for-you service with a creative agency, you can spend anywhere from $25 to $50,000. It really depends on what you need and what you’re willing to invest, but it most certainly is an investment because you want to hire a designer who you can work with to reach a certain business goal. I think that leads generated is a good metric, but you don’t want to hire a designer to make your buttons blue or make your headlines look more clicky.
That’s the fault of designers that they don’t communicate that well enough. That’s something to keep in mind when you’re looking for a designer to work with any consulting website because I don’t think a brochure website is a very meaningful or helpful level to reach. I think you go straight for the level three. A designer who understands that is going to be much more valuable for you on reaching that level.
Will Bachman: Yeah. Just ballpark, for someone who wants to build a website and hasn’t really started the process yet, just ballpark, what roughly should someone think about budgeting if they want to build a level three website? Is it closer to $1,000, $10,000, $100,000? Order of magnitude, what you-
Tsavo Neal: I’ll just give you my service offerings. I mean, my minimum investment is $5,000. I’ve worked with clients on $10 and $25,000 projects. On a higher end is where you’re actually integrating some eCommerce. If you have a book, for example, or if you want to offer a discovery session that your prospect can literally add to cart and purchase through your website, that’s where you’ll see websites on the higher end, but 5 to 10,000 is a good starting point.
Again, you’re anchoring this against how many leads? If the designer is good, how many leads you’re actually going to generate? How many conversations are you going to generate per month from your website? You want to work with the designer, or maybe even a content marketer, or a copywriter who can say, “You know what? Let’s aim for four conversations a month with your prospects coming directly from your website.” That’s the kind of goal you want to shoot for, and not “Can we make our website look pretty,” because you can’t really determine the value there, nor is it going to really help your business that much.
Will Bachman: Yeah. Where would you say is the best way to even go looking for someone, like a website designer? I mean, people can check your site out, certainly. Upwork, just googling for designers, or Fiverr, or Behance? Where do you think the best website designers hang out? Where do you find someone?
Tsavo Neal: What I would do particularly for your audience and consultants, I would find a consultant who actually generates new leads and new business from their websites and ask them “Who did your website,” because then you know that this designer is actually positioned well to help your consulting business. I would stay away from sites like Upwork or Fiverr because the chances of you finding a designer, a specialist who serves B2B or professional services firms is quite low. I would actually find a consultant’s website that you like, ask them how the website’s doing for their business and what it’s providing for them, and then talk to their designer.
Will Bachman: Okay. Find a website that you like and work backwards and find that designer.
Tsavo Neal: Exactly.
Will Bachman: Beyond the website designer, are there other people that you need to get involved like a website, the person who’s actually going to program it all, and how does it get hosted? Talk about what’s the full team that you need? Is it more than just the designer?
Tsavo Neal: Usually, nowadays, the term web designer constitutes the person who will design, develop, and host your website. You’ll see the term web developer. Those types of providers are much more interested in actually coding, maybe, a custom website, or even plugins for your website. I think that a copywriter is a great investment because you should always proceed your website’s design with the copy because, at the end of the day, clients will come to your website for the content, and your design should enhance that content. A copywriter, you want to keep that in mind, and that’s one of the biggest bottlenecks I’ve seen. That’s why I’ve learned a ton of copywriting myself is that consultants don’t know what to write before they know how to design their website. Think about a copywriter.
Then a content marketer is someone who can help. If you don’t like writing, or if you just refuse to write, a content marketer can help extract the knowledge that you have that’s stuck inside your head and actually put it on your website. Usually, a web designer will be able to help you with all of the technical aspects, designing, developing, and even more often now is the actual content that goes on it. You also want to think about a copywriter who specializes in working with consultants and professional services firms, as well as maybe a content marketer to help you take what you know and put it into actionable articles on your website.
Those three are a great place to get started in. Obviously, if you’re a small firm and you have a bigger dedicated budget, you might want to think about a creative agency, again. You want to vet them and make sure that they specialize in … At least specialize in professional services firms or B2B. That’ll help you make sure that they’re positioned well to help you build an asset that’ll help you generate leads.
Will Bachman: The content marketer, that would be the person who, like you said, takes the knowledge out of your head, writes articles. Who would be the person that helps with all of this backend stuff that a lot of people might not be familiar with about setting up ActiveCampaign or MailChimp, and integrating it with your website, and tracking what’s the most downloaded article, and just managing the mechanics of all of that automation?
Tsavo Neal: Usually, most web designers are comfortable with setting that up. I’d say 80% are comfortable with setting that up. You’ll also find content marketers are probably more helpful in terms of the analytics, but within those three positions, you’ll find someone who can help integrate the various software into your website.
Will Bachman: Fantastic. Tsavo, any parting thoughts?
Tsavo Neal: I would say, check out consultantwebsitetemplate.com, just to see all of the best practices for what I found after analyzing a thousand or so consulting website, and that will give you a great way to start in terms of not only how your website can look, but how it’s also written. You can basically take what I’ve done there, and use that as a starting point for your consulting website. Feel free to reach out to me if you need help with getting from level one or level two to level three. That’s about it, Will.
Will Bachman: Great. Tsavo, what’s the best way for folks to find you? You mentioned your website address? What’s the best way for folks to contact you?
Tsavo Neal: I would say go straight through my website, tsavoneal.com, or even connect with me on LinkedIn. I post on LinkedIn every day with actionable, helpful advice for consultants who want to learn how do you attract more business and more leads through digital presence. My website, LinkedIn, and yeah, that’s about it.
Will Bachman: Great. Tsavo, thanks a lot of joining.
Tsavo Neal: Thanks for having me on, Will.

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