To niche or not to niche? The answer is clear. Here’s why niching your marketing is necessary in order to build a better practice.
The best marketing is always purposeful, not hopeful. When you lack a niche, all of your marketing is hopeful. You’re speaking to everyone and appealing to no-one.
Niching your marketing, on the other hand, means being purposeful. It means speaking directly to your ideal client and thus differentiating yourself from your competitors.
It’s slinging mud at a wall vs taking aim with a bow and arrow.
Furthermore, niching your marketing doesn’t necessarily mean you have to stop taking on clients who aren’t in that niche. You can serve them privately and remain focused on targeting one specific niche in the visible world of marketing.
Understanding Your Clients’ Problems
When you narrow the focus of your marketing efforts to a particular niche, you are better able to show your ideal client that you understand their problems.
Every industry comes with its own set of rules, regulations and forms to fill in. It’s impossible to talk about the specific problems of every type of business at once. When you niche your marketing, you are able to focus on the particular problems of your chosen industry. You can create content that demonstrates to your ideal client that you understand their problems and by doing so, show up as the solution.
This is the secret to being seen and heard by your ideal client. You need to speak directly to them and position yourself as a specialist. This is how you stand out.
On the other hand, if you don’t have a marketing niche, prospects will see you as a commodity. They will think of your services as transactional, rather than transformational, and thus focus on your prices rather than the results you can achieve.
When you don’t appeal to your clients by talking about their specific problems and goals, you are instead forced to compete on either price or personality. The latter is only possible if you have a very strong character that really sets you apart when you show up on camera, and for most of us, this simply isn’t the case.
When you’re a generalist accountant, you’re competing with everyone. Your prospects will ask you for a list of your service offerings and the price for each one. They will then compare your prices against those quoted by the accountant down the road and choose the cheapest.
As a generalist, you are forced into competing on price. This leads to lower profit margins and means you end up serving many clients, none of whom truly value you. Soon enough, you’ll find yourself underpaid and overworked with a monster business on your hands.
When you run a niche practice, you work with a specific type of business in a specific type of way. You take your clients from pain to solution and use your own particular methodology to achieve transformations. This creates a proven track record that establishes you as an authority within your hunting niche.
Of course, that’s not to say a generalist accountant doesn’t deliver results. But let’s say a construction company owner is looking for an accountant, and considering two choices.
Accountant A has transformed the financial fortunes of many construction companies similar to that of the current prospect.
Accountant B has worked with a range of businesses but doesn’t offer any industry-specific expertise.
Which one do you think the company owner will choose? Whose services will he be willing to pay extra for?
When you operate within a specific niche, you will receive more frequent and higher-quality referrals than when you work as a generalist.
When you tell someone that you’re an accountant, they mentally put you into a pot with every other accountant they’ve ever met. You don’t especially stand out. If you receive a referral, it’s likely to be from an existing customer, and unlikely to be an ideal client.
However, mentioning your niche will land you higher quality referrals. It’s simply easier to refer a specialist.
Let’s say you’re at the hairdresser. You mention that you’re an accountant who specialises in restaurants. When you mention your niche to your stylist, a lightbulb flashes in her mind. She thinks of her best friend who owns a restaurant and needs help managing her finances, and puts the two of you in contact.
Another benefit of marketing yourself as a specialist is that you can go hunting.
When you know exactly who you’re looking for, seeking out your ideal client becomes easy.
As a generalist, you’re just stumbling around in the dark.
Once you know who you want to serve, you can get clear on where they hang out, what their problems are and how exactly you can help. You can purposefully create marketing materials that address your ideal client directly and make them feel understood.
It’s very difficult to do this when you have no idea who you’re actually talking to. The chances of hitting the mark are slim to none.
Businesses Need Your Help
The covid-19 pandemic has plunged the world into uncertainty. There are business owners out there who are desperately seeking a specialist to help them through these difficult and often scary times. They want someone with a proven track record and who knows their industry well to guide and support them. When you are a niche practice owner, you can guarantee results and this is more reassuring than ever in the current climate.
Of course, they may not yet know that this is what they need. But when you choose a particular industry niche, you can create content marketing to educate these business owners and take them on a customer journey.
The best thing you can do right now to provide value to your clients is to get super specific on their wants, needs and fears. Business owners don’t just want to be compliant – they want to be guided. They want to transform their businesses and enjoy better financial fortunes.
Show Up or Ship Out
Accountants, financial coaches and outsourced CFOs have gone one of two ways during the pandemic; they have either shown up, or shipped out.
The best way that you can show up in the wake of the pandemic is by niching your practice to offer specific guidance to clients within a particular industry. This is the most powerful thing you can do, both for your business and for theirs.
When you fail to niche your practice, you’re seen as a generalist and a commodity and are forced to sell on price. This leads you down a dark road towards a monster business filled with vampire clients .
By niching your marketing, you make working in your practice both easier and more fulfilling. You will have greater success in attracting high value clients who appreciate your guidance and are enjoyable to work with. This also means that you will be able to make more money from fewer clients, giving you bigger profits and greater freedom.
Niching is the foundation of building a freedom practice. If you remain a generalist, it becomes very difficult to harness your sales and marketing superpowers, because you are talking to no-one and will struggle to be heard. Niching your marketing truly is the difference between a transactional and transformational business, so it’s time to get clear on who you want to serve.