Knowing and owning your niche
7 steps to build a powerful business
The most successful advisors aren’t the ones who try to be everything to every client. Instead they heavily focus on their strengths – on recognizing who their best clients are, on knowing what sets them apart as professionals and continually capitalizing on both. Finding your niche – and developing, serving and refining it over time – is a powerful way to grow your business and to infuse your work with an even greater sense of purpose.
- Find your niche. Start by asking yourself this: Who are my best clients? What do they have in common? Consider their needs, goals, professions and interests, and use those shared traits to start building a profile of your “ideal client.”
- Stake your claim. Once you know who you’re looking for, it’s time to identify why you’re the right advisor for them. Think about what sets you apart. What are your specialties, your particular skills and personal experience? These questions can help you formulate your unique value proposition.
- Know the area. It’s likely that people in your niche run in the same circles, so get the lay of the land. Whether via community involvement, social clubs or professional organizations, network where your niches are.
- Operate on their terms. Growing your niche starts with owning it. And that means engaging your audience not just on their turf but on their terms. If, for example, your niche is divorced women, host seminars on financial planning for the newly single. If athletes are your focus, host events that center on sudden money or charitable giving.
- Refine your brand. More than a logo, tagline or website, your brand is the essence of who you are. And when it comes to reaching your niche, it’s important that the “look” and “voice” of your business be one designed to appeal to them and to appear consistently across mediums – from print materials to digital platforms.
- Go to them. Don’t expect your niche to come to you – at least not until you’ve gone to them first. Find out where your target clients get their information. From friends? From television? From newspapers or magazines? From Google? From Facebook? Wherever they are, your message – and a strategic plan for sharing it – should be there, too.
- Evolve your brand. Think of your brand as a living thing. Continuing to revisit it and adapt it along with the changing needs of your niche is the key to keeping it healthy and effective. Make sure clients always get a consistent, first-class experience – down to the décor and comfort of your office.
Your brand is the essence of who you are. It speaks to the clients you serve and the kinds of clients you want to serve. When it comes to reaching your niche, creating a brand tailored to appeal to them and applying it consistently – from your web presence to your office space – is key. It’s an opportunity to tell your particular story to your specific audience and build a reputation that resonates.