If you want to promote your products and grow your business, knowing your niche is key. “Nicheing-down” your business model helps you to be more targeted and therefore more effective in your marketing. This, in turn, allows you to build a strong, loyal customer base that will allow your business to be successful and sustainable for the long term.
However, in order to reap these benefits, you first need to identify your business’ ideal niche, which can be easier said than done. Here is how to identify your business’ niche and develop a marketing strategy that will most effectively market to your niche.
What is a niche and why is it important?
When you start a business, you can choose to serve the whole market, or you may choose to focus on a particular niche, from how you develop your products to how you market them. A niche is a focused section of the broader market that allows you to differentiate your business. It should be noted that a niche is a highly specific customer base, which is narrower than a particular market segment or specific market.
For example, if your business sells teaching supplies, your general market is quite obviously teachers. Within this, you may have a specific market of elementary teachers that you can serve with elementary teaching supplies. Your niche market could then be special education teachers and target them with special education elementary school supplies.
By focussing on a particular niche, it allows your business to specifically target your customer, rather than trying to please everybody. In focusing your efforts, this allows you to excel at what you do, and automatically give your business a competitive edge. One way to look at your niche is the part of the market which is best served by your business’ USP (unique selling point).
How to Find Your Niche
In order to find your business’ niche, the first thing you should do is to think about your interests and passions. Make a list of 10 interests and passions that relate to your business and determine which could be a profitable niche. By working on something you are passionate about, this will give you extra motivation to pursue your business goals. Additionally, you are probably already a member of certain niche markets. This means that you have specialist knowledge and may have connections within this niche, which will help you to be successful in the market.
Once you narrowed down to two or three niches that you are passionate about and have knowledge of, it’s time to research those niches to identify which one is the most profitable.
Questions to ask about your potential niche include:
- Are there consumer problems that are not being solved by the products that are currently available? Take a look at the questions being asked on Quora, for example.
- What do the current products on the market lack? Look at online reviews and customer comments, and watch for common problems and issues that consumers are looking for new products to solve.
- As someone passionate about this niche, what product would you like to buy? What problems do you have that you’re looking to solve?
Finally, consider the number of customers available to you in the niche. This doesn’t mean you have to have a huge number of potential customers. Bigger is not necessarily better: a larger niche is also likely to have more competition. However, you do need to make sure that there are enough potential customers in your niche available to you, and that you will be able to reach them. If the niche is too small or you will not be able to reach enough customers, you may need to find a new niche.
How to Build a Marketing Strategy that Targets your Niche
Once you have identified your niche, you may think it is time to start marketing to them. However, there is one critical step that comes in between: product development. In order to effectively market to your niche, you need to have a product that is ideally suited to them. Take the time to do extensive research to determine the needs of your customers, and develop a product that meets those needs.
The next step that will be critical for marketing to your niche is understanding your target audience. In marketing to a specific niche, you should know your audience inside and out. Build a comprehensive profile of your niche customer that includes their demographics, lifestyle and online habits. Use this information to come up with digital marketing tactics that will best reach your audience, such as social media, blogs, podcasts or videos. Don’t forget to integrate offline marketing strategies to reach your niche market, such as custom branded stickers, merchandise and event sponsorship.