Find an Expensive Problem and Get Paid to Solve It: Your First $5k Consulting Business


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Jonathan Stark says the key to side hustle success — for consultants, at least — lies in finding an expensive problem, and solving it. 

Jonathan’s a pro at finding these expensive problems, having run a successful online consulting business for several years, focusing on mobile-ready web development.

At the recommendation of two-time Side Hustle Show guest, Kai Davis, he dropped by to share some of his insight on how to get a side hustle consulting business off the ground. We chat idea generation and validation, pricing, and growth strategies.

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Tune in to Learn

  • How to find a laser-focused niche you can serve, and hone your one-sentence elevator pitch. (“I help ______ with _______.”)
  • Jonathan’s selection criteria to see if a niche or industry is “big enough” without being too big.
  • His recommendations on how to start a business-to-business side hustle even when your own availability during business hours is limited.
  • How to perform market research and idea validation to uncover expensive problems on the cheap.
  • How to earn your first testimonials.
  • The 3 and 4-tiered pricing approach he recommends after landing your first clients.
  • Why your ultimate goal should be to “sell your brain and not your hands.”
  • Jonathan’s #1 tip for Side Hustle Nation.

Links and Resources

Podcast Highlight Reel Cover 250

Download the Free PDF Highlight Reel

Inside you'll find all of Jonathan's top tips for starting a profitable consulting business from scratch.

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Where should I sent Jonathan's top tips from this episode?

I'll also send you my best side hustle tips and weekly-ish newsletter.
Opt-out anytime.

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6 thoughts on “Find an Expensive Problem and Get Paid to Solve It: Your First $5k Consulting Business”

  1. Nick, this podcast starts out like two minutes into the conversation after your intro. I streamed it from ITunes and had to listen the opening twice to make sure. You may want to double check this and see if you have a good back up.

    Bill

    Reply
    • Hey Bill,

      Thanks for the note. Checked again on my side and I’m not hearing the problem. The first thing Jonathan says is to pick a laser-focused niche, yes? (Lately I’ve been cutting out the part where I say, “Hey Jonathan, welcome to The Side Hustle Show,” to get into the content faster.)

      Are you hearing dead air or a repeated audio loop?

      Reply
      • That makes sense then, that’s what I heard…it was just a weird effect- just wanted to let you know.

        All my best,

        Bill

        Reply
  2. I’ve listened to this twice now, great podcast Nick! I love what Jonathan is saying about pigeonholing and finding a specific problem that a specific audience has. It really does make everything so much easier to define. I think that if you can tell people what you do at a party without having to explain it past one sentence, you’ve probably made it specific enough.

    Reply
  3. This is my favorite episode. Jonathan’s plan for a cold email, ‘asking for advice’ campaign, is brilliant. Reminds me of Justin Wilcox. Excellent step-by-step blueprint to go from zero to hero in any kind of consulting business.

    Reply

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