I have mentioned before that in order to create a successful business it is EXTREMELY important that you take the time to define your business niche and to identify a specific target market. If you do not specialize and aim the efforts of your business towards a specific group of individuals, then you will have a very difficult time appealing to anyone at all.
A “niche” is basically a specific area or activity that someone is particularly good at or knows a lot about. When I talk about it with respect to the business world, I am referring to a specific and specialized area of a larger market.
Let me simplify it – I look at your target audience as “who you help” and niche as “how you help those people with their particular and specialized needs”
For example, the service industry is a huge market, and is comprised of a ton of different smaller markets. Restaurants, salons, spas, bars, and retail stores all fall under that category. A “niche” would be found within an even smaller division that would fall under one of these kinds of subcategories.
Let’s take a spa into consideration for a minute. There are tons of different kinds of spas, and thousands of different kinds of treatments that can be done at one. Maybe you know a lot about skin, so a possible niche within this category could be a spa that focuses solely on skin treatments. Maybe you are more into aromatherapy kinds of things, so you could create your business around that. That’s the how-you-help part.
Basically, when I say that you need to find and embrace your very own “niche,” I mean that you need to come up with, and focus your business around, a very specific sector of your particular business market. It should be something that you are particularly passionate about, that you know a lot about, that really suits your talents and personality, etc. It should be something that makes you stand apart from the rest of your market and that is not too generic or overly used.
The idea is to be unique, and to be the BEST at what you do. Defining your niche should significantly aid you in doing that.
The idea of finding your niche goes hand in hand with defining your business’s target market. Your “target market” is the people who you want to aim your business and marketing efforts towards. These people are your potential clients.
We went over this a couple of weeks ago, but I want to reiterate that you DO NOT want to target everyone out there. There is a reason why it is called a T-A-R-G-E-T market. You should not throw your advertising and efforts out blindly shooting in every which direction, but aim it towards a specific group of people. It may seem counterintuitive, but it will actually aid you in gaining a larger client base. And you don’t want to be wasting what could otherwise be productive time, energy and money.
How do you go about defining your target market?
There are definitely some great tactics out there that can help you do this.
FIRST of all, you should think about the kind of people that YOU want to work with. Yes I said YOU!!! This is one of the few times when it comes to your business that you will really be able to focus on yourself and what exactly you want. Define your absolutely ideal client, thinking about what characteristics you do and do not want in the people that you work with/for.
Do you want to work with that lady who always complains and that can never be satisfied? No? Then throw her out of your target market!! Believe it or not, you have a ton of control over the kind of people that come to you. You just need to define who those people are, what they are looking for and want, and build your business and marketing strategy in a way that caters specifically to them.
Another thing that is important to think about is who you best relate to. You are going to be much more successful when it comes to marketing your business if you can understand what it is that your potential clients want, why they want it, and how they want it. This understanding is strongest between you and people that you have an affinity for, that you can identify with, and whose conversations you can simply step into as the solution they’re looking for.
You need to KNOW your clients. You need to be able to really get into, and understand, the conversations that are going on in their heads. Although a group of people may seem like a great and profitable target market, if you can’t understand what it is that they are looking for and what they want, then they will be absolutely useless to you. In order to solve their problems, you must first know and understand them.
Ask yourself these things: What is it that they want? What are their compelling desires? What are they lying awake worrying about? What are their secret fantasies?
If you can’t begin to answer those questions, than you should probably look deeper. Ask them. Do surveys, have conversations, etc.
TRUST ME! You will be much better off if you take these things into consideration. Not only will you be more successful, but you will be much happier doing it.
And let’s face it, if you aren’t happy doing what you do, then why should anybody else be happy with it? Clients want to work with people who love what they do and who are good at it, not with people who hate their job and push through it every day.
Happy people do a much better job and are much much much more pleasant to work with. It’s a fact of life!
So think about these things when creating or re-defining your business, they are CRITICAL.
What other kinds of things have helped YOU when deciding upon a target market? I want to hear about your experiences and any ideas that you may have. Either leave a comment below or by clicking on the bubble in the upper right hand corner of the post.
Make it a great week!