Whether you’re a business owner or a company rep, it’s essential to set yourself apart from the competition to win your audience. One way to do this is to find a specific niche to target. Narrowing your focus will allow you to spend more time to find out what it will take to become the market leader in that niche – or “own” the niche.
Finding that hole in your market where your unique selling points will stand out over your competition can be tough. But if you can do that, then you can structure your product or service in a way that makes it easy for the prospects to say yes. You can usually get higher profit margins as well. Higher margins come from higher volumes, which allow you to buy more efficiently, and also offering premium options that your competition might not have.
It can take a long time to establish your business as the leader in your segment, but it is extremely beneficial to make an effort. Creating a steady stream of business and building a loyal audience is the number one goal. If you don’t do it, someone else will.
Another benefit of focusing on a niche is reducing the competition. For example, we sell printing and direct mail. There are thousands of companies nationwide that do the same thing. But we have carved out a niche to specialize in direct mail for real estate investors. In that niche, our competition is reduced to just a handful of companies that specialize in that area. Yes, any printing company can do what we do, but they don’t have the specific knowledge and expertise to help investors to succeed in their marketing efforts as we do. That gives us a big leg up on “regular” printers and virtually eliminates then as competition.
There are typically several niche markets within virtually every industry. If you can think of a very specific product or service that serves one of your unique needs, it can probably be classified as a niche.
Most clothing manufacturers and designers don’t merely crank out pallets of pants, shirts, dresses, and so on. If a clothing designer wanted to make durable products to withstand the rigors of mountain climbing, it’d make sense to design cargo pants made of sturdy materials and then brand themselves around that motif.
Once you establish a niche, it’s essential to develop a strategy around it. Here are a few tips gathered from the pros to help you in the process.
Select your target audience. To build your niche, you should begin by picking a general market. A good approach is to focus on an area in which you’re knowledgeable and identify sub-sectors within it.
Define a specific unmet need. Analyze your audience and identify gaps in the market. Find a pain to soothe and own it. Make sure to pick a sector that has anticipated growth.
Research your customers. What are their motivations, needs, goals, and frustrations? Get them involved before you even release your products. Letting potential customers know beforehand that “something great is coming” will springboard your product once it launches.
Create your business plan. Develop a specific strategy to test market your niche before you go all in.
Market to your specific audience. Just as your product or service is a niche, your marketing should be too. Focus on targeted ads, direct mail lists, social media posts, social media groups, and other tools to get your message to people who will be interested.
These steps can help you serve your target audience. Remember that for your business to be profitable, your market and niche must be big enough to create the necessary sales and profit numbers to meet your goals. Remember, no matter how good you are, you will never get all the sales in a given niche. Be realistic about how much of that market you can capture.
The key concept in niche marketing is to understand that trying to be all things to all people can often result in being mediocre. Mediocrity risks selling to no one. Be the best in a given niche, and watch your profits grow.