By marketing to your niche, your marketing dollars are being targeted specifically to the people that you want to offer your products and services to. Your marketing plan can then be designed to focus on the quality of your customer instead of the quantity of customers you bring in to your business. For instance, one customer who wants a kitchen remodeling job with a price tag of $50,000 is more valuable than 20 customers whose projects are all in the $1,000 range, and it probably takes the same amount of marketing dollars to attract both sets of clients.
The more you know about your ideal customer, the easier it will be to design a marketing plan that specifically targets that customer – and not waste time, energy and money on avenues that wouldn’t reach them. For example, if your niche customers are first-time home buyers in the 25-35 age range, you wouldn’t waste money on a print yellow page ad; you’d invest your resources in websites and online directories.
Once again, asking questions about your ideal customers will help you narrow down your marketing vehicles:
- Are your ideal customers tech savvy or more old school?
- If they’re older, then traditional advertising methods through magazines, coupons, local papers might be a good approach.
- If they’re younger, then higher tech methods of websites, blogging, twittering and social networking sites should be a part of your marketing plan
- If they are in the age range where they most likely have young children –supporting the local PTA could put you in touch with a very concentrated market.
The more you know about your customer, the easier it will be to determine how to get your products and services in front of that customer. And once you do, your whole marketing plan depends on the quality of the service and product that you deliver to your client. All the marketing dollars in the world will not overcome bad service or a low-quality product. In Section 2, we’ll talk about your product and how to ensure and enhance quality.
The important thing to understand about defining a niche and marketing to that niche is the higher return on investment that you’ll receive with your marketing dollars. Using our realtor niche as an example – instead of trying to spread out your marketing budget and market to investors, realtors and first time homebuyers, if you concentrate your marketing on your niche (in this case, realtors), you may get business from other sources, but your budget dollars are being focused on realtors. The same thing is true if you decide that your niche is with investors, first-time home buyers, etc.
Focused marketing is less expensive and it shows expertise. Using our realtor example again, if you focus your marketing on the real estate sector and form alliances with realtors, just the mere fact of a particular realtor referring clients to you helps develop your credibility and therefore your expertise. Not only are strategic alliances important within your industry, but they can be a strong asset within your niche as well. For example, if you decide that working with realtors to find new home buyers is a strong niche for you, it will be important to develop a partnership or alliance with several strong realtors firms and participate in co-op advertising or marketing opportunities.
And, by concentrating your budget on one niche, you’ll have the money for bigger marketing budget items that can bring great return instead of stretching your dollars out over a wide range of marketing opportunities that aren’t concentrated or strongly defined.
Another benefit that comes from marketing to a specific segment or niche is that the quality of work increases with experience. And by marketing to a niche, the types of jobs that will come pouring in will be similar in type and scope. The more your crews work on jobs with similarity, the more experience and expertise they will acquire which in turn gives you credibility and experience to market.