Learn the science. Master the Art of Image Management

How to set up an image consulting business


Image consulting is the industry of the future in India and the sub-continent. The need to manage one’s image in a professional and better manner is increasing with each passing day and this gives rise to a great business opportunity to set up an image consulting business.

The path to setting up an image consulting business can be divided under the following major steps.

  • Education and training to become an image consultant
  • Creating a business identity
  • Certification to enhance credibility and confidence
  • Marketing to create awareness and to get business
  • Providing excellent service to clients creating a positive word of mouth
  • Continuously learning and updating the skills

Let me now examine each one of these points in detail.

Education and training to become an image consultant: Image consulting requires in-depth knowledge and training as each client comes with a completely different sets of variables like personal colours, body shape & size and face shape. There are also different roles and goals of a person in life. As Judith Rasband, one of the most senior image consultants in the world says, “Image Consulting is not rocket science. It’s harder!”

Although anyone with a strong desire to help people change their lives can become an image consultant, it does require education and training to be a good one. The following things should be considered while choosing an educator/trainer.

  • Credibility in the profession
  • Exhaustiveness of the curriculum
  • Post training support by the educator/trainer

The program offered should cover the following core competencies as defined by the biggest trade bodies in the field:-

  • Technical Knowledge on every aspect of image management
  • Professional Development to acquire skills to apply the technical knowledge on others including program and service material to be used with companies and individuals
  • Business Management to successfully run an image consulting business

Creating a business identity: After getting educated and trained as an image consultant, it is essential to create a business identity consisting of the following:-

  • Formation of a business entity which could be proprietorship, partnership, or an incorporated.
  • Business cards and other stationary
  • Website
  • Brochure, leaflet etc

It is important to choose the right name for the entity and corresponding domain. As far as possible one should have a .com domain.

Certification to enhance credibility and confidence: Once one has gone through a program and has become well versed with all the core competencies of the profession it becomes essential to get certified by a reputed trade body in the region one is going to run the business in. A certification brings credibility in the eyes of the clients and at the same time gives self-confidence. Some of the trade bodies in the profession are as follows.

  • The Image Consultants’ Society International (ICSI)
  • Association of Image Consultants International (AICI)
  • International Federation of Image Consultants (IFIC)

The certification usually has three to four levels and with increased knowledge and experience one can keep getting certified at higher levels to get more recognition and credibility.

The certification at the first level requires the candidate to be well versed in all core competencies of image consulting and proof of business identity among other criteria which may vary from body to body.

Marketing to create awareness and get business: At this stage one is all set to venture into the business of image consulting. Now the job of getting clients starts, and one must remember, “No opportunity is LOST. Someone else TAKES it.” It is essential to be able to market your own self as even the best cannot do business unless they are able to attract clients. Marketing efforts could include all of some of the following.

  • A good website and promoting it through social networking sites
  • Advertising in the neighbourhood initially and gradually at city level to promote the business
  • Going to clubs, associations, and agreeing to present seminars/lectures on importance of image management and related topics, even for free initially
  • Advertising yourself on the relevant association websites
  • Undertaking emailing activities to a niche database

Providing excellent service to clients creating a positive word of mouth: Since image consulting is a personalized service, in most cases it is all the more essential to provide the client with excellent service and guidance. This is a business where eventually most of the clients will come through word of mouth and the only way to generate a positive word of mouth is to give excellent service. Remember, no matter what the business is, one only sells a promise and the customer buys satisfaction. If you can fulfill your promise and satisfy the client you have made it.

Continuously learning and updating the skills: As one starts building a business in image consulting one also needs to constantly upgrade skills to keep abreast with latest happenings and trends. One also moves to a higher segment of clients and it becomes imperative to know more and the quest for learning is essential in this business. One should continue to attend programs and keep honing their skills always.

While it may all sound easy but trust me that it is not. Most people coming into this profession/business come from a professional background and this becomes a first time business venture. Running a successful business without support is very difficult. Often people find themselves in a situation where they get so harassed and involved in the nitty gritty of running a business that they are not able to concentrate on the actual work.

The key therefore is to find a training company which not only provides education and training but also provides assistance in setting up and running an image consulting business.

18 comments

  1. ENTREPRENEURSHIP DEVELOPMENT PROGRAMS WILL HELP TO ALL N CREATE POSITIVE IMAGE.

  2. devinder malik /

    great work

  3. Mr. Rakesh Aggarwal is self made person.
    His vision about new concept and idea is fabulous
    The zeal in built is something which is available to few only.
    start before someone think- is the vision of articular.

    Regards
    Poddar
    opsocial@gmail.com

  4. A. K. Rawat /

    Subject of my interest, as in my opinion at every step of life it is important. In our family, at our neighbourhood, at our workplace, or in any social activity the “image of yours” plays a very important role. Therfore I want to know more and more about the image development programe. It will help some of new enterprenuers and young aspirents of a challenging carreer.

  5. The most important thing for you as an image consultant as well as for your clients is that you are confident in yourself! You should use your confidence, body language and first impressions to persuade others of yourself, your brand or your product. Also your clothing has a great impact on you affect on others.

  6. SINI BIJU /

    I have done bachelors in business management and was training school and college students in communicative English.I have recently relocated to Bangalore and looking for some thing different..I happened to see your advertisement and am keen to know more about the Training part and Am I eligible to undergo such a training course and the fee structure and all..so how and whom to contact to proceed about it? its mention to register but before that if i could know these details…

    • Smruti Shetty /

      Dear Sini,

      Kindly contact us on the Corporate Office [Mumbai] numbers which are mentioned on the website.

      Regards
      Smruti

  7. garima bhandari /

    Hi ! I would like to know a bit more more on personalized integrated programs and short term courses available ,,thank you ,

    • Smruti Shetty /

      Dear Garima,
      Kindly visit our website or call on 022 6430438 / 39 for more details.

      Regards
      Smruti Shetty

  8. Hi
    I have been working for myself for last 10 yrs but from last 3 yrs i have not been working – i wanted to start my work again so can you guide me if i take up these course than can i start my Consulting business .let me know about the courses available and duration and timings.

    • Smruti Shetty /

      Dear Bhavna,

      All details are mentioned on the website, also kindly register to attend the free presentation.

      Regards
      Smruti Shetty

  9. Manju Sabharwal /

    Please mail me the Franchisee Details

  10. R.Kumar /

    Will appreciate your getting in touch with us to be your franchisee partner.

  11. Vinod Verma /

    Do you have a set up in Chandigarh. If not, are you willing to go for one. Email details

    • rogers /

      Dear Vinod,

      We do have a branch in Chandigarh.

      Please visit our website for more details.

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