This week, as I start to dig into Marcus Sheridan’s content marketing strategy, from his brilliant book, “They Ask, You Answer.” as luck would have it I just happened to get a question sent to me from a previous participant in one of my branding, marketing and business development workshops. And while I had another topic in mind, Josh Chen’s question was a great one, so I thought I’d start there.
While the question on the surface seemed pretty simple, it’s got a lot of parts to it. So it’s actually a video series Q&A’s about niche that I’ll roll out over a few episodes.
Let’s dive in…
Hey Karley – I have a quick marketing question. I’m writing my new physio bio right now and I want to put down that “I have a special interest in treating dizziness/vertigo, lower back pain and disorders of the neck and the shoulder” but I’m worried about driving away clients who have other physical therapy needs for ankle, knee, or other injuries that happen upon my bio or are referred to me by existing patients.
But from what I remember from my work with you, it is better that I have a niche focus to attract my ideal potential clients who have back and pain; otherwise, they might go to another physio if they don’t see that I specialize in that area.
Am I right to think this, is there anything else I should consider before “pigeonholing” myself in my bio?
This question of, “Is focusing on a niche a good business strategy?” is almost always accompanied with the fear-filled question of, “Will we drive away potential business opportunities and good clients if we niche?”
This is actually much bigger than a marketing or branding question. It’s a business strategy question that has to do with positioning. The majority of small and mid-sized businesses, professional service providers, consultants or practitioners are all positioning ourselves in a competitive market filled with others who can solve prospective clients’ pains, challenges and problems. We ALL face A LOT of competition.
Picking a niche is about picking a specialty, a focus, something that you’re aiming to be best in your space, or even best in the world at. This is all about POSITIONING yourself in your space so that you STAND OUT amongst the competition to make it easier for you or your business to attract the clients that are right for your business that you love working with.
So I’m going to start answering Josh’s question, by providing my top 3 tips for selecting a niche:
- TIP #1: Pick Your Niche Base On A Specific Problem That You Can Solve
In Josh’s case, he’s focused on dizziness/vertigo, neck and back pain. This could actually be three niches, but for the sake of this video, let’s narrow it down to neck and back pain. And this is great because Josh is being specific in his self-promotion and marketing, letting the world know that he helps people solve neck and back pain. It allows ideal prospective clients to identify that he can solve their specific problem.
- TIP #2: Do Research To Ensure It’s a Viable Niche.
Assuming that you’re business has been up and running for a while and you’ve been working with clients to solve various pains and challenges before you pick the niche problem or challenge you’re going to focus on and build your expertise around, I recommend going back and reviewing all the clients you’ve worked with to see if the problem you are going to focus on is shared by a big enough group of people so that you can be assured that there will be enough clients to run a successful business.
- TIP #3: Pick A Niche That You’re Passionate About.
The smart and strategic approach to selecting a niche is selecting a niche that you’re passionate about, because once you pick it, you’re going to be spending a lot of time in it, learning about it, refining your approach and how you help clients solve their pains that deal with that specific area or problem.
So, Josh, in your case, you’re off to a great start in selecting and focusing on your niche because you’ve picked a niche based on a specific problem – neck and back pain; I’m pretty confident that there’s more than enough people suffering from back and neck pain and need your help; and I do know that you’re passionate about this area because when I met you at 16, I remember you talking about becoming a chiropractor back then.
In the next episodes, I’m going to continue to dig into the topic of NICHE and cover:
- Reframing the fears that business owners have about niche
- The CONS of being a generalist
- What I call, “The pigeonhole” dilemma and what to do about it
- And, the PROS of selecting a niche and how it can help you save time, save energy, make your job easier, and bring you more joy and profit
So, stay tuned for the next video and between now and then, I’d love to hear what your burning questions are about:
- Differentiating your business
- Attracting and keeping more of the clients you love
- Developing clear, concise messaging
- Getting clear on your vision and goals
- Building a stand out brand for your business
You can email me your questions to firstname.lastname@example.org.
When I choose your question to answer here on the video series, you’ll be the first to get the recorded answer!
Thanks for taking the time to listen in. I’d love to hear your thoughts and additional questions on this topic in the comments box below.
See you next time.