by Cindy Schulson, Founder of Attract Your Niche
Note from Kelly: For more great tips, be sure to check out my interview with Cindy, “The Fastest Path to Ideal Clients and a Targeted List”.
If the word “niche” is a dirty word for you or you’re just sick of hearing about it, I totally understand. That might sound strange coming from someone who helps solo professionals master their niche strategy, but there you go. If that describes you, then I’m going to challenge you to dig a little deeper with me.
What I’ve found is that there are 4 main reasons people fear choosing a niche.
1. They’re afraid of turning away business
2. They don’t want to feel boxed in
3. They’re afraid of choosing the wrong niche
4. They don’t know how to find their niche
Let’s tackle these one at a time. Before I do, let me just briefly define “niche”. I like to think of your niche as your “Who” and “What”. Your “Who” is your target market and your “What” is the solution you provide. You need to be clear about both pieces of the puzzle. Remember that people aren’t looking for products or services, they are looking for solutions. That’s true no matter what you’re selling, but it’s especially true for service providers. People want to know about the solutions we offer and the outcome or transformations we help people achieve.
So let’s go back to these four fears.
1. Afraid of turning away business
While it might seem that you’re limiting yourself when you focus on a niche, the opposite is true. Here’s why. When you target a specific group of people with a particular solution that they want and are actively looking for, it makes marketing so much easier. You can speak directly to them, using their language, touching their hearts and minds. All of your programs and services can be tailored to them. It’s easier to become an expert in your area, which allows you to charge more. You do your best work because you’re doing the work you love and working with the people you’re most passionate about helping. You get more referrals because people know who you help and what you help them with. You attract valuable joint venture partners who serve the same target market but offer complementary solutions.
The bottom line is that when you have a clear niche, you earn much more with less marketing effort.
2. They’re afraid of being boxed in.
Focusing on a niche doesn’t mean that you can’t help people who don’t fall within your niche. It just means you have a clearer focus so you can target your marketing and programs.
Also, understand that you aren’t stuck in your niche. You will ultimately grow with your niche. There are two ways you can do that. One is to take your solution and bring it to other target markets. The other way to grow your niche is to find other solutions you can offer your target market. But the key is to start with one target market and one solution, and then grow from there.
3. They’re afraid of choosing the wrong niche.
Choosing a niche isn’t forever. I always advise my clients to reevaluate their niche strategy every 6 to 12 months. And as I’ve explained above, you will grow with your niche. Having said that, you don’t want to just guess your niche and hope for the best. You have to put the time and effort into researching and evaluating your niche. Which leads us to #4.
4. They don’t know how to find their niche.
I can certainly understand this problem, because I had it myself. I knew the importance of finding my niche but I couldn’t find anything that gave me clear, step-by-step instructions on how to do it. Everything I read talked about choosing a target market. But I really believe that if you’re going to build a sustainable business, one that leverages your strengths and experiences and you’re passionate about, then you have to start with you.
So I created a step-by-step system to help solo professionals find their niche. When you take something complex and break it down into bite-sized pieces, it’s so much easier.
It’s time to take action – strategic, focused action that brings you results, and allows you to attract your ideal clients so you can do the work you love and spend less time on marketing.
About the Author:
Cindy Schulson, Founder of AttractYourNiche.com, helps coaches and other solo professionals leverage their gifts into the perfect niche, message and system that is uniquely you and irresistible to your ideal clients. Cindy’s Niche Success Kit has helped guide thousands of solo professionals on the road to finding their own niche. Grab a free copy at www.attractyourniche.com.