What is a niche? A niche is a specialism that caters to a certain market or group of people. If we relate this to business the oxford dictionary definition is as follows
“A specialized segment of the market for a particular kind of product or service.”
For example, if we take Kate Hudson’s clothing business Fabletics as an example. This clothing business is created for women and mums who are looking for active, yet stylish sportswear at affordable high street prices. This is clearly stated on the marketing copy and overall mission. See below.
“JustFab Inc. Co-CEOs Don Ressler and Adam Goldenberg launched Fabletics with Kate Hudson after they saw a gap in the activewear marketplace: there were plenty of luxury brands, but none that offered stylish and high-quality gear at an accessible price point. These three unstoppable innovators joined forces to create the Fabletics brand in 2013.” (as cited on the Fabletics about page)
This whole paragraph identifies a gap in the market and clearly shows how this has a defined niche market and is what the ideal customer really wants.
Having a niche is important because if you try to cater to everyone your overall marketing and message won’t speak to anyone. Your niche can also be linked to who your ideal client is. So, it’s important you have a targeted niche market and speak to a customer or client in a certain way which they can really relate to.
Let’s look at three specific reasons about why it’s important to have a niche in your business.
1. Stand out – By having a niche you are memorable and are far more likely to be remembered. Without a niche people are likely to forget you and your business. This can be applied to any product based or service based businesses. Think of products you love like Bose Speakers who are known for their expectational sound and audio quality. Or any service based businesses that specialize in a service. For example, Hertz car rental specialize in providing rental cars.
My business name ties into the niche it provides as it’s called “The Career Happiness Mentor”. This name speaks directly to my ideal client and their need for finding solutions to unhappiness at work. Your business name can also add to your niche and make it more unique. This is where your branding and overall messaging can be important too so you can stand out from the crowd.
When I decided to work with professional women and mums this helped me carve out my niche more and attract the women who needed my help. When you are clear about your niche this helps you attract your ideal clients and customers.
2. Ideal client – Having an ideal client is a key part of having a niche. By having a niche, you can speak directly to your ideal client. This communication is important in helping you attract people into your business. Without a niche, not only do you not stand out, you are not speaking to an ideal client or customer.
“When you are talking to everyone you are talking to nobody”
This quote perfectly summarizes the need for a niche and why it’s important to have an ideal client.
My ideal client is a woman who is unhappy in their current job or career and is looking for a solution to this. I help them create a new job, find a new career or create a new business.
The copy and messaging you have needs to tie in with your niche. The more research and understanding you have about your niche and how it can best be placed in the market right now the more you can attract your ideal client.
The other advantage of this is not everyone will be an ideal client. So, if someone is an ideal client it will speak more directly to them. Thus, filtering out anyone who isn’t a part of your niche. Many people think having a niche is a disadvantage but it’s the opposite, the clearer your niche market is the better this will be for your business. Imagine if Victoria’s Secret didn’t have a niche? Would their business really work? This is why your ideal client and research around this so important.
3. Specialize in a specific area – By having a niche you have a specialist area that you cater for with your offerings and services. You may know of similar businesses or competitors. If you work on the first two elements already discussed above standing out and ideal client. Your unique selling points should already show in your brand and overall mission statement and values.
The niche and speciality you have is important because you want to attract the right type of customers to your services. This goes back to your ideal client. However, your niche will also help you be remembered.
If your niche is specialized it can help capitalize on your unique skills, credibility, knowledge and you as a brand. Especially if you are the face of the business. I recently worked with a mentor – Nicola Huelin of Mpower mums who embodied all of this. Although I am not a mum myself, her brand and overall message really impressed me. She works with mums to help them create their business empires and runs an online community for them. Nicola refers to this as an “invisible revolution”. Her background is in business and marketing you can see how this would impact on women wanting to work with her.
With the business, I run the career happiness mentor I specialise in careers advice and guidance, job hunting and career mentoring. I have made it clear on my site and LinkedIn that I am a qualified careers counsellor. With experience working in different educational settings and understand what it’s like to be confused at work and be unhappy at work and feel the need for more. Confidence is needed in this business because even generic Viagra will not help if you are not sure of your intentions. I have done this by sharing my personal story of career unhappiness and what I have now created. if you are the face of the business this is important. People buy people. Therefore, niche is important because someone is ultimately coming to for your skills to help resolve a specific problem and get the support they need to move forward.
A niche is a unique way to make an impact on the people you really want to help. Standing out and specializing in your zone of genius makes a lot of difference to the customers and clients who want to sign up with you. Your ideal client is important for your business because without one you won’t have a business.
“Having a niche is a passport to your success”
Remember, try not to complicate your niche keep it simple and more importantly make sure you do the necessary research to help give your customers what they really want. Even if you have a product based business this is so important. If you need support to help you define your niche go get it now. I have invested in many mentors and this has ultimately helped me understand why this is such an important part of having a business.