To most, that statement doesn’t even make sense. How can narrowing your market, expand your profits?
Another load of that marketing mahewy I tells ya. That’s right, it’s a counter intuitive statement, that needs to be justified before it makes any sense.
Counter Intuitive is a phrase that I like, but for the life of me whenever I go to use it, I can never remember what it is. Surprisingly I’ve probably been using it enough lately that it’s actually stuck in my mind as I write this.
In business and in marketing when we seek out the counter intuitive approach or idea, we’re going where our competition is scared to go.
It’s new ground for us as well, but it allows us to stand out from the crowd and offer our services in a way that most people have never seen. There are a lot of counter intuitive approaches to marketing, and for the most part, the best techniques you’ll find go against the grain and are counter intuitive. But that’s a whole other article I need to write.
The reason why those techniques are so powerful is that the majority of businesses, look at what their competition is doing, or what other businesses in the community are doing, and they model that.
The problem lies in the fact that the majority of businesses out there don’t know what they’re doing when it comes to marketing and are only doing what they feel is the right way to advertise. So they lower prices, offer sales, put out a ton of ads do anything they can to try and get everyone through the door.
We advertise how we assume it should work, push out a TON OF ADS reminding the public at large that we are the best choice for their hard earned dollar.
It makes sense right, advertise to everyone with the hope of convincing a few people to walk through the door. It’s how we imagine stores like Walmart, Costco and SuperStore work. If we provide a service that fits everyone then we’ll have so many customers, we’ll be rich in no time.
We want to model our advertising after what we think we see the big brands doing on TV, Radio and the Internet.
But the truth is, as small businesses if you try and market a service to everyone, you won’t convince anyone. The rules for those big box stores are completely different from the rules required for a small business to succeed.
But even they have their niches carved out for them. Their marketing departments know exactly the type of person they want walking into their store, they know their average age, education, skin colour, vehicle preferences, likes, dislikes, and if you get in far enough, you’ll probably find out that they’ve named their person as well.
I was listening to a marketing podcast yesterday, where Russell Brunson was talking about how he and one of his friends had the opportunity to pitch a marketing plan they were launching to a large box store like target. But as they were going through their presentation, they kept hearing people say, you know I don’ think Lisa would like that font, and I’m not sure Lisa is going to like that colour, and I don’t know if Lisa is going to approve of that message.
So finally Russell speaks up and says, excuse me, who is Lisa? Is she the decision maker? Can we get Lisa in here, I can start over and present right to her if you think that will be better.
One of the executives in the meeting said that Lisa was their Customer Avatar, and she was how they judged whether their customer’s would like a product or not. They would imagine if Lisa (their customer avatar) would like the product if it was being presented to her and could even generate a conversation with Lisa if need be.
This is exciting. To see a large company, with millions of buyers, using a Customer Avatar to direct their marketing. This means that even those large stores, the ones we feel just market to everyone, have an Avatar they’re speaking to when it comes to their marketing.
As a small business start-up, it can be a difficult concept to wrap our minds around.
Take me for example, in my career as a freelancer and a start-up, I’ve done everything from videography, photography, wedding photos, boudoir photography, writing, social media, animation, 3d modelling, graphic design, painting… You name it, I’ve probably said yes I can do it.
But how has that served me?
I’ll say it’s been interesting, but as far as being part of a business that I can scale and grow, it hasn’t served me well. People know who I am, but for the wrong reasons. As I’ve narrowed our focus at Think Big Studios, from everything that brings in a dollar, to what our customers need to build a profitable business online, I still have people asking me… “How’s the photography business?” when I haven’t been a photographer in over 7 years.
It’s a nice skill to have when we need it, but it’s not something that has directly helped us grow in our niche of marketing, branding and web design.
What we’ve found, and what many of our clients have found, is that as they’ve narrowed in on their market, and zeroed in on their ideal client, they’ve also been able to grow their business.
It allows us and them to create marketing content and sales copy that speaks directly to who they want their customers to be. They can speak about what their customer’s problems are and how their services are the best solution with the best benefits for those problems.
This makes their customers feel like they’re being spoken to directly, which is a huge boost when it comes to building a relationship with them. Instead of being slapped with a blanket message about some service, their customers now feel like the messages were created just for them.
It’s a powerful way to make a connection and grab your prospect’s attention.
The old model of creating generic ads that try to appeal to everyone has never worked. Yet we feel this sense of loss if we don’t try and serve every person who walks in our door. The most profitable businesses are those who know who their customers are, can speak directly to them and have their customers think wow they really know me, they really know what I’m going through.
That’s the power of narrowing in on your niche.