My friend Doug Alexander sent me a great article from Advertising Age (registration required) by Marcia Lindsay on niche marketing. In it were ten great tips for grabbing a niche market that I think are absolutely worth passing along:
“To harness the power of niche marketing to achieve your business objectives in the new economy, follow these principles:
- Position your brand as narrowly as is economically possible.
- Become the specialist that anticipates the needs of your target.
- Rapidly work with the target niche to co-innovate.
- Set as your goal such consumer centricity that the target niche will want to co-brand their identity with yours.
- Live by a higher standard of ethics.
- Embrace a business model and metrics that grow the most valuable assets of the new niched economy.
- Reap first-mover advantage by learning how to identify a niche of opportunity.
- Re-imagine your role as that of entrepreneurial founder of a special interest group.
- Forget push marketing; excel at pull marketing.
- Realize your brand is now “media” competing against all other media.”
In my humble opinion, #4 and #5 and #9 are the most important elements to remember as you approach any new marketing endeavor - the more niche you can get, the better.
And as you go niche, strip all pretenses away, take “beginner’s mind” (as they say in yoga) and be authentic.
Niche, derived from “nest,” should imply that you’re going into the realm of people’s safe places. Treat them with respect, and the response should be overwhelmingly positive.