Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Don’t get “Stuck” with Niche Marketing

Everywhere you turn, you hear the rule about niche marketing making you rich repeated. This ranges from pick a niche so you can have a logo designed to the idea that you’re not really in business until you have a niche market. What if the pressure and approach doesn't improve your relationship with your business and your clients?

I’m here to challenge that wisdom, as you probably already know. Niche Marketing includes some serious sticking points that may indicate it’s NOT your best option. I want to take a quick look at those points today.

Niche Marketing is presented to entrepreneurs and business owners as the fix-all, do-all solution. While I agree we can learn some important lessons from Niche Marketing, it’s a direct reflection of some of things that are seriously wrong with the business and economic model that has failed so gloriously (and mysteriously if you listen to the experts).

This approach to doing business is a direct out-growth of the drive to specialization. From tinkering with genetics to higher education focused on less and less content, business, life, and talent has been driven to focus on increasingly narrow ways. The drive to know more and more about less and less is now THE embedded way for you to also do business. To sustain this model, business must take over and limit access to information, resources, rights, and property.

Another impact of focusing all your efforts exclusively on Niche Marketing is you can miss opportunities. Creative application of skills and services is one of the hallmarks of small business. The drive to niche can make it more expensive to offer your services through multiple channels. You can end up confused by the drive to serve all the customers who move you. Your efforts can get way-laid by the "rabbit chasing syndrome" aka chasing multiple objectives.

Yes, the niche-driven perspective is not a business model I’m willing to enlist wholesale in order to finance my passion and drive. Are there other options?

Yes! There are other ways to work with your business the incorporate the lessons of niche marketing while not being held hostage to the over-specialization of virtually everything in our world.

Surviving the changes that have arrived and continue to present takes something other than what we already have. From Einstein to other great thinkers, we already know that the thought and behaviors patterns creating the problem are not what is needed to solve the problem.

What do the other ways look like? They are personal, customized, connected and flexible. Niche Marketing has become one-size-fits-all. What is really needed is creating a business structure, approach and methodology that specifically matches your heart. The planet, your customers and your well-being can no longer sustain this single-answer, knee-jerk methodology.

Your values and the value you offer is the beginning point. Just like the new Pepsi ad campaign about One Tribe and funding entrepreneurs reeks of marketing ploy cloaked in warm-fuzzies, so is a Heart-Based message driven primarily by Niche Marketing becomes an unclear representation of who you are and why you serve. What if instead of chasing any rabbits you were by the home-base where rabbits would return when they were tired of running!

When it comes to the methods you choose for marketing you and your business, other choices might just be something that serves you better. You and your clients deserve more!

Wishing you Success & Heart!

Heidi Sue

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