When I first typed the title "niche marketing for solo professionals" it came out as "nice marketing".
How appropriate because that's exactly what niche marketing is.
Niche Marketing is Nice Marketing
If you are a solo professional like a coach, consultant, trainer or even an accountant of financial adviser then you'll know that it is difficult to stand out when you're a little fish in a big pond.
Big businesses have big budgets and teams of professional marketers to spread the word and to get attention for their businesses.
But you just have... well you.
And to be honest, you'd probably prefer to be doing the work required to provide the professional service than doing the marketing necessary to find the clients.
That's where niche marketing comes in.
Instead of competing with everyone you possible could, you redefine your business.
In particular you redefine:
- Who your customers are; and/or
- What services you will provide
Instead of being a life coach helping clients with all manner of personal problems, you focus on helping empty nesters find a new purpose in their lives.
Instead of being a general practice accountant, you provide specialist accounting services for website designers including providing the systems for automatic billing for future year's maintenance and hosting.
Your business becomes easier to define and easier for others to understand.
That makes it easier for you to connect with the right kind of clients and easier for other people to refer your business because you've stood out from the crowd.
Suddenly you're not just another accountant, coach or consultant providing generic solutions. You're providing specific solutions to specific problems.
Meet Cindy Schulson, A Niche Marketing Expert
In the last month or so I've got to know Cindy Schulson through a coaching survey I did into how coaches market themselves.
Cindy is an expert in helping solo professionals to find and attract their niche.
I then interviewed Cindy on niche marketing for my small business membership site Your Profit Club and shared the interview with the people who downloaded my marketing for coaches benchmarking report.
You can get access to the interview and to a short video from Cindy at Finding the Right Niche For Your Coaching Business
And if you want to know more about Cindy's services to help solo professionals use niche marketing effectively, you shoudl check out AttractYourNiche.com (affiliate link)
Cindy has a ten week, ten step training program which she's let me have free access to so I can tke a look around. So far I've seen two weeks videos and it's looking very good.
- Step 1 - Niche Know How
- Step 2 - Find your solution
- Step 3 - Find your target market
- Step 4 - Research your target market
- Step 5 - Finad and research your competition
- Step 6 - Clarify and evaluate your niche
- Step 7 - Your brand
- Step 8 - Your marketing funnel
- Step 9 - Your giveaway
- Step 10 - Marketing your giveaway
The course is meant for solo professionals like coaches and consultants but I know of at least one product supplier who has jumped in to learn more about effective niche marketing.
My Own Journey To Niche Marketing
Is this do as I say and not do as I do?
I must admit that I've been much better at helping cliuents to find their niche than doing it myself.
I say in the interview with Cindy that it's a combination of arrogance (I'm good at so many things - ahem) and humility (but I don't really specilaise in anything).
Some of the people I speak to about niche marketing, it's obvious what should be their niche. If you've spent your working in one industry or developing deep specialist skills in a narrow subject, then your niche jumps out at you.
Others are not so lucky and have to delve deeper.
That's where a course like Cindy's can help by asking the right questions. (Take a look - affiliate link)
But you still need to come up with the answers.
Developing a successful niche marketing strategy means making choices and specifically making many more decisions about what not to do.
I've decided to help service and commodity product businesses to differentiate themselves from their competitors.
When I look back, this has been a recurring thread in what I've done with companies both as an employed senior manager and since 1995 as a consultant/coach.
I'm fascinated by the buying decision and why people decide to buy from one supplier and reject the other offers.
Should I have a tighter definition on the "who"?
Perhaps but I want to be very wary of falling into a self defeating trap.
When I look at industry experts, they tend to promote their own way of doing it and expect firms to fit in. That's fine if clients are well spread apart but it creates little clusters of businesses who all compete in the same way. And that's the opposite of differentiation.
You'll start to see more articles on this blog about differentiation but in particular at DifferentiateYourBusiness.co.uk