Looking to increase your business’ or department’s profits? Re-engage your customer base?  Niche marketing is the solution. Revisit your marketing plan and make a commitment to dive deep into your target niche in the New Year. Here are 5 rules to get you started.

1. You shall not market to anyone but your ideal customer!

While it’s tempting to market to ‘everyone’ or ‘women between 20-50 who live in the United States’, you’ve got to focus your efforts. Take time to think about who you enjoy working with, or, in some cases, who you enjoy working for. Look at your numbers for the year to see which customers are the most pro?table. There’s good odds that the clients you enjoy working for also happen to be your best clients.

2. You shall not chase multiple groups of customers!

Let’s say you sell hair accessories, and you’ve come up with a few groups of people with whom you enjoy working, and who make pro?table clients. Your different target markets are: women aged 25-34 who enjoy fashion and live in the greater Omaha area, women aged 21-30 who play golf and live in Northern New Jersey, and female NCAA gymnasts. These three groups just LOVE your products, and rarely return items.

While it may be tempting to market to all of them in the same way, with the cheap cost of website development, it’s much easier to create a site for each of your target niche groups. That way, you can not only work to build a community around your product, you can develop a targeted message for each group, as you understand that they all are
purchasing your product to meet their different needs.

3. Marketing is not about you, it is about the customer!

So often, we visit websites, look at brochures, or meet with salespeople who tell us about their company. While it’s time  to give a little background (credentials and some company highlights), clients want, more than anything, for you to understand to their problems. You can do this by using your website or brochure to highlight how other customers solved their problem with your company’s help. If you understand your niche market, you’ll understand what clients to feature. It’s easier to focus on a small group of people, versus trying to market to ‘everyone’.

4. Reward your best customers!

If you’ve successfully denied your niche market and honed your marketing message, you should start seeing an increase in sales. More importantly, because you’ve denied such a specific group, your top clients should become your greatest fans, because they know that you do indeed understand their problem. Offer them the opportunity to speak up and spread the word about your company, and reward them for their efforts.

5. Learn from your customer!

It’s something we all can easily forget: learning from your customer. When you focus on a highly-targeted niche market, you will be afforded the opportunity to learn much about your clients, and you should use this to grow your business even further.

Oftentimes, great customers will share information about themselves that will help you meet even more of their needs. Just as importantly, poor customers offer a learning opportunity as well: you want to see what patterns exist, and use these patterns to refine your niche marketing plan.

Focusing on a very small group of people to market to may seem counter-intuitive, but by implementing a niche marketing strategy, you will be able to spend less money on advertising, increase your conversion rate, and, most importantly, improve your customer?s experience.