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Michael started Consulting Success® in 2009. They detail the beginnings of their company in their Starter Story interview: 
Q: How did you get started on Consulting Success®?
My cousin Sam and I had run and sold several businesses before starting Consulting Success®, working with clients like Panasonic, Dow Jones, The Financial Times, Royal Bank, and more. We were at a good place with our consulting businesses. However, we wanted to build a business that allowed us to work from anywhere — one that gave us the freedom to travel the world and spend more time with our families.
We started Consulting Success® 11 years ago without a monetization plan, simply sharing what had worked (and didn’t work) for us in our prior consulting businesses. We wrote a lot of content about consulting: how to win clients, how to price your services, how to converse with your clients, etc. Our goal was to help up and coming consultants implement the best practices that worked for us.
Our “aha” moment came when readers asked if we had a course on consulting. So, we built that course. Our second “aha” moment came when our students asked if we offered personal coaching for their consulting business. So, we built a coaching program. We didn’t validate our services — our audience requested them. In a sense, they validated the business for us. By sharing content, we built an audience. And that audience wanted more help: requesting us to build a course and coaching program to help them start and grow a consulting business.