I know we're constantly told to 'nail your niche' but here are my 5 favourite reasons why you really don't need to:
1. Negotiating your prices with potential clients is fun!
2. Continuously reiterating what it is you actually do to your clients, keeps it fresh in your own mind
3. Putting time and effort into marketing with little return is good practice
4. Competing with every other business in your industry (in the world) is a really great motivator
5. Being at least the 5th or 6th person clients go to, definitely not the first person, makes it all worthwhile
Wow. Well that sounds awesome.
But, if you do:
Want to work with clients who aren't a giant pain in the ass
Want to be crystal clear on what it is you offer
Want your marketing to work
Want to be high on Google search and
You would really like to be the first person that people go to ..
Niching is to Specialise (and who doesn't want to be special?)
When you niche / specialise your business, you target your market, which means you are easier to find by your ideal client. Yay!
And by targeting, yes I do mean narrowing the people you sell to.
This probably feels counter productive because surely if you sell to everyone, someone will buy from you.
Perhaps. Maybe. Eventually.
But if you don't niche down you are competing for clients with the rest of your industry (in the world). And don't forget that it's your business, so not everyone who approaches you will be the people you want to work with.
You are doing your target market a favour too by not making them contact every Tom, Dick and Harry before finding you. And when you exclude the rest of the population, you're saving a ton of time and energy by not engaging with time wasters in the first place. #WinWin
Remember there are plenty of clients in the world for everyone - you just have to find yours.
Your 'Ideal Client'
Your Ideal Client is basically someone who will pay you the money you are asking and needs what you do.
Who you actually want work with, i.e. the type of person you like working with, will become more apparent the more you work with your ideal client.
The Ideal Client Avatar Fantasy
You may have been advised to create an Ideal Client Avatar, but I'm telling you now: stop wasting your time daydreaming about some made up person.
It doesn't matter what school this pretend person went to or what they like to do at the weekends.
They aren't real!
Imagine if you actually found that person in *real life* and they turned out to be a total dick to work with.
Find real people who will pay you real money for what you do, then figure out the type of person you attract and who you like to work with.
Tips to Finding Your Niche
1. DON'T FORCE IT
A niche doesn't happen overnight - it evolves with your business. The more work you do and the more people you work with, the more your niche will develop.
It's finding that balance between something you are good at, something that people want and something they will pay you for.
There's no point in starting a business in something you're shit at, or in something people want for free.
In June 2020 I was an odds and sods VA, offering everything from filing to web design. I was good at filing but bloody hated it - but people just hired me for web design (thank god!) because I'm great at it and bloody love it. So that's all I do now.
And more recently, a negative client experience led me to niche my Social Media Content service down to a Repurposing Content service. A genius move - much more specialist and much easier for my client to understand what it is I offer.
Before you go balls-deep into your niche, test the water - see what people want and what you like to do because at the end of the day it's got to make you money.
Find out what you are great at and then make sure there is a market for it.
2. YOU ARE THE SPECIALIST. THE EXPERT. THE 'GO TO' PERSON.
People establish trust with specialists quicker than we do generalists.
So what do you specifically want to be known for?
When you Niche, you will automatically start to use those longtail keywords / phrases within your online content that will assist you getting found by your target market on Google search.
I'm known for Wix Website Design.
For example, if you're a business based in Salisbury and you need a local Web Designer who uses Wix, do you search 'Website Designer'?
No. You'd have a gazillion results.
So you search 'Wix Website Designer Salisbury' to narrow down your search and find exactly who you need.
This is why I'm now approached by people who have literally just heard about me because they immediately trust me as a specialist.
3. GET SPECIFIC
You can start to hone your niche by each of the following categories:
Topic - what industry / category you are in
Audience - what demographic of people (age, gender, what problem do they have that you can solve,)
Location - if you have a physical address, this will serve you well
Price - are you budget or high end
Quality - are you no frills or do you check every last detail
Values - what political, ethical and religious view points relate to your business
Some of these will be more appropriate than others but try to narrow your niche in these different ways and see what applies and works for you.
Your niche will become more apparent over time, you cant rush it. Your niche will find you, not the other way around.
Again, test the water to see if there's a market for what you offer.
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