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The Importance of Finding Your Business Niche

April 26, 2017

Kim Scaravelli | Trust Communications 

Kim ScaravelliIf someone asked you to name the one thing your company does exceptionally well, what would your answer be?

If your response to that question takes more than a minute and involves totaling a list on your fingers and toes, you may have a problem.  One of the most common traps small business owners fall into is going too broad with their products and services.  This is an impractical strategy that quickly burns through limited resources such as time, energy, and money.  When you are trying to be the best at everything, it is very difficult to become the best at anything.

Stop trying to think BIG and instead, focus on identifying that one thing your company does BEST. 

This one thing your company does best represents your opportunity.  You cannot possibly do everything and compete with everyone, so finding your niche is integral to driving your business forward.  Once you know your niche, you will be able to:

  • Use your time and money effectively
  • Clearly market your product/service
  • Set yourself apart from the competition
  • Target your marketing to a precise audience

To explain, I’ll use the example of two restaurants that opened in my neighborhood around the same time. Restaurant number one had a four-page menu that included authentic Italian cuisine, Greek dishes, and common pub fare like chicken wings.  This restaurant went bankrupt in less than a year.  Everything tasted great but when looking for these dishes, I never picked that restaurant.  When I wanted Italian, I went to an “Italian place”.  When I wanted Greek, I went to a “Greek place”.  And when I wanted chicken wings, I went to a pub.

The second restaurant served only pizza and salads, but they made everything in a brick-oven, with local-sourced ingredients, and offered gluten-free crusts.  I felt less guilty about feeding my kids “healthy” pizza so this place became a go-to option for family dinners and take-out.  Ten years later, this restaurant now has three locations and an expanded menu that includes items such as specialty desserts.

Finding your niche is not about limiting your business; it is about focusing so that you can use your resources wisely.  Over time, a niche business can grow by expanding in ways that still align with its original purpose.  Scaling upwards is easier when you are working with a small, more defined set of products or services.

Business success is not dependent on being the best at everything.  It is dependent on being the best at something that you know people want. Find your niche, stay focused, and work hard.

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