Who’s your target audience (niche)?

Choose a Niche

Most businesses feel like selecting a niche will cause them to lose opportunities. I argue that selecting a niche helps a business gain more opportunity because they can communicate to the specific group of people the offer is intended.

Using my industry as an example, take a look at the following two statements (keep in mind, consumers subconsciously ask, what is it, is it right for me, and can I trust it. In this exercise I’m not concerned with trust):

  • Statement A:  I help businesses with digital marketing.
  • Statement B:  I help online educators attract the right students and sell more courses.

Statement A communicates everything digital marketing for every business. It doesn’t grab your attention and assumes the audience knows how digital marketing will help.

Statement A does a poor job of answering the consumer questions:

Consumer: What is it?
Message: Digital marketing
Consumer: Is it right for me?
Message: help businesses

The consumer is left wondering do they need digital marketing, what is digital marketing, and what kind of business is it for.

Statement B clearly defines a specific group of people and communicates two challenges the group has: (1) attracting students and (2) selling cores.

Contrast Statement B consumer questions with the previous:

Consumer: What is it?
Message: It attracts students, sell more courses
Consumer: Is it right for me?
Message: Online educators

In this scenario, the consumer is left with a clear understanding of who it is for and what the result will be.

Selecting A Niche

Here are some guidelines to select a niche:

If you have existing customers, consider the people you’ve worked with and find commonality among them (e.g. worked primarily with attorneys, or primarily with creatives).

If you are selling a new product/service, what problem does it solve? What is the outcome of the product/service? Make a list of all people who can benefit.

When selecting a niche, you don’t want too wide or too narrow. Use the following suggestions to as select the right size:

  • At least 10 – 200 competitors in the world
  • At least 2,000 – 10,000 prospective customers in the world
  • Can buy a business list to reach people (proves the market is big enough)
  • Affinity with the market – types of people/personality you enjoy

Conclusion

Identifying a specific audience will allow you to craft better marketing messages, that will, in turn:

  • Attract customers quicker because the message clearly identifies who it is for.
  • Create brand loyalty with select people – if you are everything for everyone, you are special to no one.
  • Spend less time selling to the wrong people.
  • Less competition.

The best marketing messages resonate with a specific group of people and ignite their interest.


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This article is from September 2018 in our weekly newsletter Sure Digital Marketing Tips. The newsletter focuses on actionable, fundamental marketing and digital marketing tips.

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Founder of Sure Optimize

Sure Optimize is a marketing agency that delivers a measurable impact through organic search and marketing analytics.

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