It allows you to become known as the expert and go-to person for your ideal clients
Knowing and attracting the clients who are ‘just right’ for you and your business. I’ll be delving in the seven reasons why a niche is important in business and how knowing your ideal client is so important for growing your business and generating consistent income.
I’d like to start off with a story. A couple of years back I was buying a new car. I went on to a popular car sales website here in the UK and there were around 400,000 cars for sale. I started to scroll, but very soon became overwhelmed and bored so stopped. In the days that followed, as I was driving around, I started paying more attention to the cars around me. I looked at colours, makes, models etc. I started to think about how different cars made me feel… too old-fashioned, something my grandpa would drive, boy-racer car etc. etc. I gradually started to build a picture of what my ideal car would be. Then one day I spotted it… the car that I didn’t even know I was looking for was sitting right in front of me at the traffic lights! The minute I got home I opened the website again and used the filter on it to narrow down the search. I left a couple of options such as the colour open to give me a wider choice to start with, but as I scrolled through the now 8,000 cars, I started discounting many due to their colour and so decided to go with my heart’s desire of having a red car and that narrowed it down to just over 1,000 cars. Now we were getting somewhere! But 1,000 is still a lot of cars to scroll through and check. I added another couple of criteria, and it was narrowed down to only just over 200! And so, I was able to pick my top three to go see and test drive. And within a week I had my new car!
Now, what does buying a car have to do with having a niche in business I hear you ask? Stick with me and you’ll find out.
Having a niche or ideal client gives you a really solid foundation from which everything else in your business grows. And we all know that a solid foundation is key to having a solid structure, to use the building analogy. In order to ensure that your business plan is solid, it is so important to really narrow down who your ideal client is. By truly knowing and studying your ideal client, you can craft your branding, messaging and marketing to speak directly to them. You are able to find them wherever they are hanging out and position yourself in front of them by offering support and value. This is crucial before you even begin to think about selling anything to them.
Moving on from this to the second reason, clarity – for both you and your ideal client. I know that there are many people out there who would describe themselves as ‘multi-passionate’ and I was once that person too. As I’ve spoken about many times before, I just could not comprehend why you would narrow your prospective client base down from millions, gosh even billions if you take the world’s population, to just a tiny sliver of people on the planet.
I set out to put myself out there and tried to reach as many of these billions of people with no clear idea of what was important to them and what they were struggling with. I chose a name, paid for a website, business cards and flyers. Spent hours and hours building my website and writing random blogs… all to generate a grand total of two paying clients. In fact, they didn’t even come through my website or social media – they were referrals from a local centre. Looking at my dormant website and previous social media posts, no wonder! No one could consistently recognise themselves in my messaging. And therefore no one engaged with me or my services. All this hustling posting random quotes, posts and blogs with no real purpose. Hours lost that I won’t get back again. Much less the money spent! Now that I have clarity on who I feel most aligned to serve, I have managed to grow my business and my audience much easier, and engagement is great!
So, what about ‘engagement’ then? Well, the third reason relates to any interaction between you and your prospective clients, whether that’s them replying to your email list, liking and commenting on your social media or blog posts, or joining your group and being an active member.
But to get good engagement, you need to have targeted messaging, using their language and words. And I’ll cover this in more detail in a later blog when we cover the Y for Yearning. When your messaging is targeted, your ideal client is able to recognise themselves in what you’re writing and therefore more likely to start a conversation with you.
Moving on to the fourth reason, there is no point creating fantastic TikTok videos with all the bells and whistles, but your ideal client has never even heard of TikTok! One of the most important reasons to have a niche in business is to be able to position yourself in front of your ideal client. Imagine spending hours planning, filming, editing and captioning you’re an amazing TikTok video, posting it and then…crickets…not a single like or comment. You need to really spend time figuring out where your ideal client is hanging out. Now again, for me, this was a really tricky one as I had major FOMO – fear of missing out – I remember thinking until very recently ‘But my ideal client could be on all these social media platforms!
What if I miss the chance to find them and engage with them if I’m not on X platform?” Well, you can of course still post to them all, but if you focus your time and attention on one platform, you can master all there is to know – the best way to post (e.g. reels on Instagram), learn more about that ever elusive algorithm, and, most importantly, you can show up consistently, with consistent messaging. As I’ve spoken about many times before, consistency is absolutely key to creating that know, like and trust factor.
This leads nicely into the fifth reason of why it is important to have a niche in business. Through being clear about your messaging and focussing your precious time and attention on one specific platform, you are able to be much more focussed and intentional.
Time is so precious so rather than spreading yourself too thinly and not being able to do anything well enough to see a decent return on your investment in time, you can refine and finesse your messaging and your strategies to yield the best results. You are able to see much quicker what resonates with your audience and ideal client by analysing your reach and engagement.
Coming back to branding as the sixth reason, I want to focus on only one aspect of branding here though and that is your USP or unique selling position. YOU are your USP. By identifying your ideal client or niche, you are able to immerse yourself in it and will feel completely aligned to them. You will own your brand, your messaging and your offer. You will feel confident and assured when engaging with them. And this in turn will attract your ideal client to you naturally. Gosh, who wouldn’t want to have that?
Attracting your ideal client naturally means much less hustling and less of those dreaded sales call pitches where you feel as if you need to convince your prospective ideal client to buy from you. But another important benefit of niching down, is that even though you may have a very similar niche to others in your field, by aligning your brand to you, your values and what you believe, you help yourself stand out from the competition. Nobody wants a generic carbon copy of every other business out there – your ideal client wants to feel seen and heard – not just copy and paste social media captions, emails and ads etc.
The last and perhaps, most important reason why it is important to have a niche in business is that you can constantly increase your knowledge and experience in that niche area. You can develop a name for yourself and become the go-to person for advice and guidance. Which in turn will lead to others making referrals to you. You become even more known for your knowledge and expertise and the cycle continues and grows…meaning your business grows!
Coming back to the car buying story. This applies to both you as a business owner niching down as well as how your ideal client will shop around. Firstly, once I became clear on what I wanted in a car, I was able to find it very quickly. Having clear criteria meant that I could tell the website what I wanted, and it found my new car for me. As a business owner, having clear criteria on who you serve means that you can target all your time and effort to that audience meaning you are able to position yourself in front of them and find them where they naturally hang out. From a client’s perspective, they are clear on what your business is about and what you have to offer without feeling overwhelmed. Through your messaging and marketing, you are able to tap into what matters to them and help them see what transformation you offer through your unique solution to their biggest pain points.
To end with a quote from Rob Walling: “The genius of niches is they are too small for large competitors, allowing a nimble entrepreneur the breathing room to focus on an underserved audience.”
So here are your top takeaways from today’s blog:
If you need any help with niching down, I'd be happy to have a chat with you. Book a complimentary Strategy Call with me today.