If you began the New Year wondering how you can supplement your current income, sharing your knowledge with outside companies or brands is a greater possibility than you may think. Even if you don't have a 4-year degree, your working knowledge of an industry can give insight to those (like managers) who may be stumped when coming up with a solid resolution. Choosing to be a niche consultant can help give your brand the boost it may need.
A niche consultant is someone who has an in-depth understanding of something and sells their knowledge to companies or individuals that may be missing out. Anyone in this line of work should be a good presenter and be able to express their ideas in writing. In some cases, it may also help to gather data from reliable sources that support your claims, as well as persons who can vouch for your ability.
Here are some good niche ideas but if you've got a creative mind, there may be more possibilities. If your ideas can generate or save a company money, it's definitely worth exploring. When you think outside of the box, you may be able to come up with some profitable ideas that don't require a degree or certification. One incentive to adding this as side income is the startup costs are minimal.
One good example of this is Jackson Galaxy a.k.a. The Cat Daddy and host of My Cat From Hell. If you've never seen the show, which airs on Animal Planet and some streaming channels, Jackson isn't a talking head but a real-life cat behaviorist. Although his title came from a natural ability to deal with crazy felines, many of his methods are backed by veterinarians.
If you think a cat behaviorist sounds crazy, how about consultant titles like Food Taster, Technology Evangelist, or Fashion Curator? (youngisthan.in) The Balance also has some good consulting ideas that appear to be out of the ordinary.
A New (-ish) Way to Brand
Don't feel like writing an e-book or teaching online courses? That's understandable when you're still building an audience. However, in order for others to take your consulting abilities seriously, you better get ready to pitch. If you can hit at least three areas that concern (or have the potential to do so) companies and your resolution ideas, you should be able to make noticeable sales.
Even if you don't make a sale right then, this can be a networking opportunity that will lead to better things in the future. This is where your promotional takeaways come in handy. If it's something that relates directly to an industry and not the usual engraved cheap stuff, you will generate new, legitimate leads, if nothing else.
How to Get Started
Ed2Go (I recommend using your public library instead of paying money through a college or on your own) has a Start a Consulting Practice online class. The above video has some good ideas for defining a niche as well. Universal Class has a few consultant online training classes but their outline gives more detail as to what newbies can expect on the job. This varies from one situation to the next, so it's not written in stone.
While you may benefit from life coach training, it's not needed. While industry credentials or a degree may say something, it's not the primary focus of clients. However, you should use your credentials to justify why you charge a certain amount and use your achievements to upsell services.