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Picking your niche can be one of the biggest stumbling blocks to making sales online.
If you don't know who you want to market to and it's not clear to your market that you're trying to sell to them, no one wins because no one buys.
If you're having trouble choosing a niche, you've probably done all the exercises that show you how to come up with your perfect avatar. Or maybe you've tried to apply a blue ocean strategy. If you've done all of this and you're still stuck, try coming at niche selection from a different angle.
- Identify what specific problem your market is having
- Go beyond fake avatars and give your niche an identity
- How to let your market know that you understand them
- How finding the right niche will bring clarity to your messaging so you make more sales
Blue Ocean Strategy - Get your copy of the book on Amazon
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So you've done all of the exercises to try and find your avatar. You have done the exercises to niche down and find that particular target market who you want to sell to, and maybe you've been at this for weeks, months, or even years because I have seen it where people have been at it for years and you still do not feel comfortable about the niche that you serve.
I want to show you a better.
Welcome to another episode of the Influential Woman Podcast. This is the podcast for women about women empowering and equipping you to rise up and take your place of influence in life and business. I'm your host, Trish Jones, and today we are talking about nicheing or "nictching" If you live in America.
If you've been struggling to find or create your niche, I want you to do this instead. But before, just to be able to give you some context so that you will understand better by the time I give you the solution, I want you to think about you having a problem and someone specifically giving you a solution to your problem.
A Story To Help You Put Finding Your Niche Into Context
Let me give you an example. Years ago, I took my daughter to the doctor because she'd been at a hockey tournament, and by the time she'd done, she was having really bad chest pains And this wasn't the first time that it happened. And so we took her to the doctor because I wanted to find out what the problem was, and the doctor said, "Oh, you know, she's got Asthma."
I'm just gonna prescribe her an inhaler. And I said, No, she doesn't have asthma. I have had asthma, and this is not asthma. So the doctor proceeded to argue with me and I just went, okay, fine. So we took the prescription. I rang my husband and I said, "Look, I will go and pick up the inhalers, but I am telling you that Elodie does not have sports asthma, which is what he said it was."
So we picked up the prescription and the next day I spent all morning on the internet. Well, I did in the evening as well. Started again the next day until I came across the solution. A number of runners were saying that suddenly they started getting these problems where they'd been running for years and suddenly they were getting these really bad chest pains and what was it?
And they were being told it was sports asthma. And they were saying, "no, it's not sports asthma." And then a doctor came along on the forum. He said, "There is nothing wrong with you." He said, what you are doing, he said, especially if it's in autumn or winter time - which is what this was - you are running with your mouth open when you are supposed to be breathing through your nose.
You breathe through your nose because your nose has hairs and those hairs in your nose warm up the air and by the time they get into your lungs it is at the right temperature. When you are running with your mouth open - because you think that you are going to be able to get more air by doing that - what you are doing, is that you are breathing in the cold air and it's going straight to your lungs and creating problems with the alveoli.
I was like, "oh my gosh," and then he said something to do with tree spores, et cetera that occurred particularly around this time of year - around autumn winter. My goodness. I basically just told my daughter every time you're playing hockey now, if I see you running with your mouth open, I'm gonna shout "close your mouth!"
She's going, Mommy, please don't do that. She about nine at the time. She said, Mommy, please don't do that. And I said, Well, it's an easy solution. Just don't run with your mouth open. So consequently she went back to school, we turned up to the hockey matches, she didn't run with her mouth open - actually, once she did and I kind of like looked at her and she closed her mouth before I even had a chance to say anything.
She has never had the problem since. Do you hear me? Never had the problem since. So because I was able to find somebody with the precise solution, not someone who was guessing and saying, this is what I think you need - well, not even someone, it was a doctor guessing and saying, oh, she's got to have asthma. If I was a parent who had never had asthma before, - which I did ever since I was a child (not anymore) but that's another story. And because therefore I recognized that this was not the same symptoms as someone having asthma, I did my due diligence until I found the solution.
Fortunately, it didn't cost me anything. All it cost was for my daughter to keep her mouth shut when she was running and breathe through her nose.
Relating This Back To Find Your Niche
So now I've given you context about a problem that is being solved, let me relate this back to your target audience. If you have a solution to a problem, and you can clearly define what that problem is to the person that you almost know their problem better than they do, do you think that they're going to be willing to buy from you?
I think the answer is yes, right? In fact, I know the answer is yes. And I've been on the forums and I've seen the frustrations of people who have been looking to find their niche, some of them for what seems like years, and they've done all of the exercises and it's painful. And I've been there too. You know, I've done the avatar, you know, what is my perfect avatar?
I've looked at the blue ocean and the red ocean, and then tried to glean from the Red Ocean and bring them over to the blue ocean. And if you don't know what I'm talking about, I can't remember the name of the author of the book, Red Ocean or Blue Ocean, whatever it is, but I will put it in the description.
That's as accurate as he gonna get right now, right.
Putting The Problem First
But how about you start with the problem that you can solve and then start solving that problem. So rather than leading with the solution, right? Or the benefits... Oh, I have these 18 videos of X number of hours long or whatever, that you basically say to people, "this is what your problem is."
"This is why you are getting the problem, and so therefore the solution is X, Y, Z" - whatever your solution to the problem might be. If you actually do that and you start off by just trying to solve people's problems, you will soon know who you want to market to, right? So what I'm saying is don't go in straight away and think I have to have the perfect niche. I have to have the perfect avatar. You can have the perfect avatar, but guess what, your perfect avatar is generally speaking a made up person, right? So they're not a real person. This is somebody that you would like to fit your demographic or the person that you think you would like to work with.
And so you have to say, you know, they like doing this. They do X, Y, Z, however you do it right? And by the time you've come out, you, you look at it and you say, Ah, you know, this is my perfect avatar. It might even be based on someone that you've worked with previously, which is actually better than starting from scratch.
But for most people struggling with their avatar, There's normally one of two problems. Number one, they can't actually describe properly, or in depth, the problem that their target market is having. And then the other problem is they try to create this elevator pitch around their niche, and it sounds staged.
I think elevator pitches just sound absolutely staged. All you have to do is think "I solve the problem. X, Y, Z in order to get X, Y, Z." So if for example, you are talking about weight loss, rather than doing weight loss, you can say that you work with postpartum moms to actually want to get rid of their baby fat, right?
Or their belly fat, or whatever it might be. You are not, therefore, in this big, massive, wide niche of weight loss. You are focusing on a particular identity as in Postpartum moms. So not just moms, postpartum moms, those who have had a baby within whatever period of time, and you are therefore focusing on postpartum moms who want to get rid of that excess belly fat, or whatever weight they've put on since they've had their baby.
So number one, you have an identity, a real identity, a real person. And number two, you have a real specific problem. Right, specific problem. Remember I went to the doctor with my daughter because she had a specific problem of suddenly starting to get chest pains which would last for quite a long time, and then coughing, but it was a dry cough.
It was awful. So there was no real phlegm, it was just coughing. And when I described the problem to the doctor, he didn't get the problem. I had to go and do my research until when the person then started explaining, Oh, is this happening? Blah, blah, blah. Suddenly I was all ears, and as I said, a number of runners who had been on that forum said, Yes, this is what has been happening to me.
Told my daughter, Close your mouth when you're running. Breathe through your nose. Problem solved.
If I were selling a product where I could identify that problem specifically, or describe it specifically, I should say, and someone was selling me a solution and it wasn't, "Oh, here's an inhaler," do you think I would've bought the solution to the problem?
The answer is yes. And yes, of course I would. Right? So the problem that most people come across is that they are trying to use a fake avatar, which doesn't really exist, and then they're trying to then create an elevator pitch around that avatar. And the problem is then you come out with something that isn't really real and you're not really focusing on the specific problem.
And as a result, you then have a problem to give your messaging clarity and nobody is buying. And let me also tell you this. If you have been doing the exercises, spending the $2000, $3000, $10,000 and you're still having a problem with your niche, I can tell you why you're having your problem with your niche... because the person who is telling you, "I know exactly how to find your niche" and they're telling you to go and create your avatar, your blue ocean, your red ocean - all of that kind of stuff. Generally speaking, they didn't find their niche the first time around, but now they're telling you, go and do this, and you will find your niche. And this is why so many people struggle.
And again, I have seen it. I've been on the forums, I've purchased the two and $3,000 programs where they have told me how to find my niche. In the end, it has been just working with people with a specific problem that enabled me to realize that A), I do wanna work with women - I didn't initially - I wanna work with female entrepreneurs - but they have to be mission minded or mission focused or mission driven, whatever the term you want to use.
They want to make a difference and an impact, and they want to get their message... they have a message I should say, that they need to get out in the marketplace. That's the kind of person that I work with now.
How The Gurus Find Their Niche
Some months ago I was watching a video by a guy called Steven Larson, who worked with Russell Brunson at ClickFunnels for many years. And he was saying that he left ClickFunnels and he has been working on his own business, and I don't know whether he's reached a million now, but that was his intention.
But it was only after he left ClickFunnels that he realized that his market was the people who used ClickFunnels and had a particular problem with building funnels. And that's when he said, "that's when it hit me! That's when I realized this is my target market." Because he had been speaking to these people over and over and over again and they were coming to him and telling him what their problem was.
He was solving their problem, but he hadn't realized that they were specifically ClickFunnels users or buyers. I bet you that won't come out in an avatar exercise - a piece of software that you might be using that people are having problems with. I bet you that's not gonna come out if you just create your avatar and you know, "what does their day look like?"
"What do they really want?" And "where do they live and how old are they?" And "are they male or female?" I am not saying that all those things are bad, but what I'm saying is, that all of those things are not necessarily going to get you to the crunch point where you say, "yes, I've pinpointed my market."
This is the kind of person that I want to work for because I know what their problem is because I've been there and I've struggled with this problem and I know the solution that they need to the problem. And so I'm able to describe their problem down to a "T" and I know their problem even more than they do because sometimes people don't actually know what solution they need to the problem until you identify and get deep down into what the problem is.
Bringing Awareness of A Problem To Your Niche
I wouldn't have known that my daughter just needed to close her mouth when she was running had these other runners not said that they were getting the same problem. And then the doctor coming along and explaining the science behind what was happening. And suddenly, there you go, the solution was there. No inhaler.
So you have to let your market know that you understand them, and drop the fluffy elevator pitches. Just tell them what their problem is, right? Tell them what their problem is, highlight their problem, and then you introduce them to the solution. What most people do is that they introduce their solution to a problem and they make the problem very vague and focus so much on the solution.
You wanna turn it around. You want to make the problem so detailed so that even the problems that your target market didn't know they had, they suddenly go, "Oh my gosh, yeah, this has been happening to me." You know, just think to yourself, if you ever go to the doctor and you try to describe to the doctor what your problem is, sometimes you know, you can feel what it is, but you can't describe what it is.
That is no different with your target market. That is what is going on with them. They, they know what is happening, but they can't describe what is happening. And so you need to describe what is happening for them. And if you have ever been through the problem that your target market has been through, that's a great place to start because now you can look at them and say, This is the problem that I have solved because I have had that problem.
Or maybe you've solved the problem for somebody. Someone may have come along to you for marriage counseling. Listen, I have never have been married. I was about to say I've never been married. Yes, of course. I've been married for 33 years. I have never been divorced, but I have had people come to me for advice when they have gone through their divorce.
It's not something I want to do all the time because it is emotionally draining. If I were in the market to go and help people who have been going through a divorce, I have had experience and I have successfully helped people to navigate their divorce and come out a whole person the other side. So, It doesn't have to necessarily be a problem that you've had yourself, but a problem that you have solved for somebody else, and you are confident in solving that problem for somebody else.
Okay, so I know I'm sounded like a broken record here, right? But you need to get specific about your target market's problem and stop guessing. So those avatar sheets, I'm not saying throw them away, use them in conjunction with, but if that's all you are doing, you're probably doing a disservice to yourself and to your target market.
And your messaging is probably very vague because you have not got to the root of the problem. So speak your audience's language. Describe to them exactly the problem that they are experiencing. In the language that they would use, and then you can introduce them to your solution. At that point, they're gonna wanna bite your hand off.
"Take my money already!" is what you will want to hear, right? That should be what you are hearing along with the Kaching, Kaching, Kaching, the cash register going off as people are saying, Oh my goodness me, she's talking to me. And that's what a solution does. It actually speaks to your target audience and tells them what their problem is, and so therefore now they understand what solution they need.
Your Niche Can't Always Describe Their Pain Point or Problem
Don't assume that your target market knows what their solution is and they're in the market to find a solution. Because it could well pass them by because they don't yet know how to define what their problem is. That is your job. That is the easiest way to niche down. And if you don't believe me, just try it.
Come back and tell me how you got on. And I can tell you I know what the results are going to be already, and I'm not being boastful, I am actually just trying to make life a lot easier for you so that you can go and find your niche stress free. So there you go, that's the easy way to go and find your niche.
Now Go Find Your Niche!
Get your message out there, and make an impact in the world and I will speak to you on the next episode of the Influential Woman Podcast ciao for now.