When you have a new idea for a business, your first step should be to find out who is your target customer.
Doing this will help you understand and measure your marketing efforts easily. Narrowing down your target audience and focusing on what you offer based on that audience is known as “Niche.”
The following are quick steps to building a good niche.
Step 1: List Your Desired Customers
Write down a list of customers whom you want to conduct business. Be specific in choosing what you want on the list. Identify the geographic location and range as well as the type of customers you are targeting. You have to recognize that you cannot choose everyone as your customer. Targeting “everyone” as your customer will lose your focus and confuse your customers about your brand message and products.
Are you targeting consumers or small business owners? If small business owners are the type of market you would like to sell your products, what type of business owner are they? What is their industry? Knowing your audience will help you define your niche.
Step 2: Identify What You Want to Offer
It is easy to get sidetracked when you are in the process of defining your niche. After you have listed your target customers, it is time to get clarity with your products and services. This step will help you identify the services or products that you will offer.
Here are best practices that will help you in the process:
- List the things that you can do or love doing, and if needed separate it by category. This list will identify what services you can offer.
- Among the services you would like to offer, which are the ones that align well with your passion? Put those services at the very top of your list.
- Identify the lessons you have learned and applied in life that pertains to your top list.
- How do you approach problems that arise when it comes to doing what you like to do? Recognize your patterns when solving the problem.
Your top list/s will lead you to your niche ideas.
Step 3: Describe Your Customer’s Needs and Problems
This step is all about identifying the needs and problems of your target customers. Create 1-3 customer character/avatar or persona (however you want to call it). Ask yourself, what do they want? What are their concerns?
Step 4: Create a Preliminary Niche Ideas
Now that you’ve reached step four, it is time to combine the niche ideas you have formed in your head while your processing steps one to three. Write down these niche ideas.
But before you go further, here are the five benchmark that make up a good niche:
- It solves the problem of your target customer.
- It aligns with your vision
- You went through the process of planning it.
- It is unique (at least within 50 mile radius where you’re located or in your sphere of influence)
- It can adapt to changes
Step 5: Make an Assessment
Now that you have defined your niche, start by developing your niche and assess it against the five benchmark mentioned in step four. If the niche doesn’t meet the benchmark of a “good niche”, scrap it and move on to the next niche idea you have formulated.
Step 6: Test and Measure
By this step, you have developed your niche following the five criteria from step four. Before you go all out in launching your niche, test it first in the market. Most known brand does not launch a product in the mainstream market unless it is tested. The samples and free trials you receive online or from your local grocery are just simple strategies of testing the product.
Testing the product will allow you to validate your customer’s interest in what you have to offer.
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