The advisory market is pretty invisible online.
The best startup advisors have bootstrapped businesses themselves. I’ve had one-off coaching calls with serial entrepreneurs and even VCs and their tips were straight to the point.
Consider approaching former founders with successful exits or folks who ran several businesses over the years. Even if they don’t usually offer advisory services, they can be of help.
Additionally, if you join a networking community where consultants and advisors hang out, look for advisors who work with similar startups.
There are different types of business advisors.
Consulting brick-and-mortar stores or enterprises is a different game than working with startups. I approach the strategy differently depending on whether I work with an agency, a bootstrapped startup, a founded startup, and a founder with previous exits.
Since finding advisors online is far from trivial, consider the following channels:
- Your network and networking communities in your area
- Facebook groups for entrepreneurs, especially in your industry and/or your area
- Finding startup founders you relate to, and reaching out directly
- The Small Business Bureau in your city (considering there is one) can yield some unexpected talent too
I have written an article on the power of networking which can help you network with several people, offline or online. It will guide you in knowing potential advisors who can help you in your business.
And last, if you can’t find the right advisor, you may niche down and cherry-pick specific business problems you struggle with and hire one of the specialized advisors.