You’re reading Category Surfers, where we spend hours researching the fastest-growing software categories every week. So you can discover the next unicorn SaaS idea before it explodes.
What is it?
Companies and investors use expert networks to hire consultants. Expert networks typically get information from a client about the kind of expertise they need, then find experts from their network. But why? Well... Companies use the expertise to craft a business strategy, do market research, or develop a company’s brand and marketing strategy.
These experts can make even $70K a year just for sitting on a few calls here and there.
Who’s the buyer?
The job title is often analysis leadership at investment firms. The second best job title is a founder at a tech company.
20% of buyers are in the SMB segment, 62% in the mid-market, and 18% in the enterprise market.
What is the problem?
Solving most problems requires expertise and talking to people. The problem with that approach is getting the right expert to talk to you. At smaller companies, you can simply make the decision and if it turns out to be a mistake, you just do something different. Larger companies need more research to make the decision as it's harder to change the direction. Jobs are on the line! Same with investors. They can't simply know all the facts so they use expert networks to drive investment decisions.
How big is the market?
The top 10 players bring about $200M in revenue. The combined annual revenue of all players in the market is north of $2.5B.
How fast is it growing?
In the past 3 years, the market's supply side has grown 127% with an average of 31% year-over-year growth.
Who are the top 10 players?
How much are people paying?
Companies spend $20,000 to $500,000 per year on expert networks. Most tools have an annual platform fee. On top of that companies pay experts around $500 per hour just to talk to them.
How are they buying?
Sales-assisted motion only. It's a similar process to "buying" a corporate law firm. You don't just sign up and have access lol.