Do you really expect that the first time you transact with a new person or company, it will involve them giving you money in exchange for your services?
Maybe that works if you're selling hot dogs on the street. But consulting?
There are many other transactions that cost you almost nothing and will also lead the prospect to give you something in return:
- Your prospects can join your email list to get familiar with your work. They are giving you their consent to reach out to them on a recurring basis.
- They might agree to watch a video where you'll teach them something. They are giving you an implicit confirmation of what their interests are.
- You can bring their team together for a quick consultative presentation. They are giving you their time and dedicated attention.
All of these things will earn you trust, and make it more likely that they'll hire you at some point in the future. You can explore what they're already doing, help them identify risks and opportunities, question their status quo.
But hiring you on the first date is unthinkable. That's not how consulting works.
The question then becomes: how much time, money, and energy do you invest building trust and how much do you spend trying to close the deal?