When you decided to open your small business you knew that you had a product or service that everyone would benefit from. Then you opened up shop and found out that indeed, not everyone was taking advantage of what you had to offer. At this point you either make yourself crazy trying to get the message out to everyone so that they can understand what they are missing, or you start to realize that it is time to focus on those customers best suited to your offering.
Trying to market to everyone leads to confusion, frustration, and poor return on your marketing dollars. Clearly defining your best customer, their attributes, and how they are reached defines your niche.
For many small business owners the concept of a niche market sends them into a panic. They think of the several customers that they have that fall outside of the definition of the ‘ideal’ customer and they don’t want to leave them out. Marketing to a niche does not mean that you are excluding others from becoming customers. It merely means that you are targeting your marketing efforts toward the needs and wants of the ideal customer.
Niche marketing will help you to attract more of the kinds of customers that you can successfully help and who are willing to pay for your product. This will help to strengthen the reputation of your business as well as improve your financial status. It also helps you, the business owner, to simplify your marketing and product offering decisions.
Focusing on meeting the needs of your ideal customer will simplify the running of your business. It will attract more of the people that you serve best without excluding others that will also want to take advantage of your offering.
In future posts I will give you tips on how to define your ideal customer. Meanwhile, take some time to think specifically about which of your customers are the ones you wish you had thousands of.