You probably already know some of the benefits of niche marketing but perhaps feel limiting yourself to one particular segment sounds like a recipe for disaster, or at the very least, is counter-intuitive.
WHAT IS A NICHE?
A niche is a focused subset of a particular market group. If you were to think about pet food, for example, we could chunk that down to cat food and dog food – but this is still a very broad market. If, however, we were to look at gourmet pet food this could be considered a niche market. Even more effective would be to take this one step further and look at organic gourmet pet food. If you’re just starting out and want some inspiration here’s a great article on how to find a profitable niche.
WHY HAVING A NICHE IS IMPORTANT
In broader markets (e.g. pet food) you are up against competitors with massive marketing budgets and global brands. As a small business owner, one of the core challenges you face is that of people finding out about you.
Often, the broad markets are very crowded and well established. If we were to think of this from a marketing spend perspective. You want to get the greatest return on investment possible, and in spending money on digital marketing (e.g. Google Adwords) the cost per click for an advert relating to “dog food” is going to be much higher than “organic dog food” because the search term is less competitive.
It also means that the person clicking on that advert is a more relevant customer looking for your particular solution. Realistically, you don’t want thousands of people clicking on your adverts – you only want qualified prospects – and the more niche focused your marketing is, the better the conversion and the higher return on investment.
WHY YOU WON’T LOSE CUSTOMERS
It can feel counter-intuitive to limit your market, by focusing on one specific group, particularly if you’re offering something that has broad market appeal (e.g. hairdressing).
However, think of specialists within the medical profession. You have general doctors then you have specialist consultants that focus on a particular niche and charge way much more for their time. In focusing on a particular niche (e.g. a certain type of cancer) they create massive pull toward their offering to the people that are specifically seeking out a solution to the problem they face.
In doing so, you position yourself as the go-to-expert and align so strongly with that particular audience they are magnetically attracted to your ‘specialist area’ of expertise. Remember, people have problems and they seek solutions – if you can position your service as offering a more relevant solution than a more broad spectrum competitor, they will choose you.
In marketing, relevancy is everything and one of the best ways to make yourself stand out as a relevant service provider is to use niche marketing to your advantage.
TAILOR YOUR MARKETING TO EACH TARGET SEGMENT
Even if you offer a broad service such as “personal training” it is wise to focus on a particular group of customers (e.g. new mums) and market to those specific needs. Companies like Advanced Industrial Finishes offer a relatively broad industrial service that you wouldn’t think could be niched down, so obviously, but what they do is tailor the way they package their broad offering to each specific market, so that each segment feels heard.
If you offer a broad professional service with several audiences (e.g. presentation training) it would be much more effective to package your offering differently to each niche as, for example, law firms have very different needs and motivation to universities). What you’re really looking to do is connect with your audience on their level and in a way that is benefit driven to their unique requirements.