Why having a niche will help you to attract business
One of the most important business lessons I have learnt over the years and have subsequently tried to impart to my clients and Inner Circle club members, is to have total clarity of your target market and what you have to offer.
I have very bad memories of fumbling in the dark in the early days of my coaching and mentoring business. Back then, I thought women were my niche… all women in business.
You too may have a fab service and be desperate to help your perceived market which will, for many of you, mean everyone and anyone, anywhere!
The trouble is, you may not end up getting new clients this way. Your messages will be too vague and this won’t be attractive to your potential customer.
My clients, who after all want to run more profitable businesses, don’t always come round to this idea straightaway. They fear that by ruling out the wider market, they will lose mass appeal and miss valuable opportunities.
Forget being a generalist
If you are hoping to attract business by being a generalist, you can forget it – it won’t happen. Usually, the opposite is true!
And besides, defining a tight niche won’t mean you can’t work outside that niche when the jobs come in.
What you will find is that more work will come your way just because your messages are clear, easy to grasp and will be seen by the right people. This also makes it much easier for other people to give you effective referrals.
It may mean having a very specific message: Mine is that I work with female solopreneurs over forty who are quite serious about developing their business. Many of them are busy mums who find it hard to focus or prioritise what matters, because they simply have too much to do and too little time in which to do it.
Can you relate to specific groups of customers?
Knowing your target market and being able to relate to their problems, builds trust which will essentially help you attract more business.
For example, I know how my clients feel because I’ve been there myself – busy, overwhelmed and with too much to juggle.
Once you are clear on WHO exactly you are able to help, you can fill in more detail, whether that’s gender, age, social standing, size of business or income level.
This will help you to avoid another classic mistake so many solopreneurs make (myself included): Broadcasting your message to the world as if on BBC world service, but with nobody listening. Sadly, without the specifics, you may as well give up.
Communicate with the right customers, in the right way
Think of it this way: people buy different shoes for different purposes – hiking, shopping or clubbing, for example.
There isn’t a generic shoe to suit all applications so there’s no point in attempting to be a ‘generic shoe’ for your area of business – instead of widening your net, you run the very real risk of attracting nobody.
So whether you’re a walking boot, a trainer, a slipper or a dancing shoe, make sure first you and then your potential clients know it!
About the author:
Ute Wieczorek-King helps busy women to be visible, effective and profitable in business. Connect with her via Twitter, the Success Network Community on Linkedin, or Success Network Recipes on Facebook. Or sign up to the monthly newsletter in the right-hand column.