One popular path to success many small businesses take is to tap a niche market and establish a dominant position as a player in that niche. No large retailer can be all things to all consumers. This leaves under-served market segments of the population, and this is the space in which a small business can penetrate a market.
How can your small business capitalize on the unmet needs and find a niche market? Here are four basic concepts to nail a niche market.
1. Offer a Unique Product or Service.
Ideally, you want to be the only one selling what you’re selling. The trick to hitting upon a unique product or service is to look for unmet needs. For example, a local attorney claims he is the “Leading Motorcycle Lawyer. This would be considered a niche market.
Processes can be products as well. For example, someone once considered the inkjet printer cartridge and came up with the idea and process for refilling them. Perhaps your process solves a problem.
2. Offer a Marketable Product or Service
You might come up with hundreds of creative and original products and/or services, but if no one wants what you are offering, then what is the point? Although you are targeting a specific niche market, there must be sufficient demand for your product/service for you to turn a profit.
To determine demand, you need to gauge your market and conduct extensive market research. If you want to know if there’s a market for your product, the best way to find out is to reach out to your target market and start asking. Another method you may try is searching the internet for key search terms.
3. Choose an Available Niche Market
Niche markets tend to be small, and there is only room for a limited number of players. Before you engage in a niche market product or service, research your competitors, the size of the market, and how much of that market might be available to you. If you have no competitors, and demand seems high, your concept has great potential.
4. Market, Market, Market
Marketing is perhaps more important for niche products than for any other type of product because consumer awareness of your product is low. Your success or failure depends on making the connection with exactly the right type of customer or client and making them realize that they need your product.
For example, people know exactly what to expect from Starbucks, and they know whether they need coffee. Advertising is less crucial. In contrast, if you are selling naturopathic treatments for pets, people are less knowledgeable and less sure if they need the product.
Through marketing, you can reach and educate your potential customers. Once you establish leads, start building a relationship by making contact on a regular basis.
By applying these concepts, your small business will enjoy the powerful competitive advantage that mastering a niche market provides.