Marketing guru, Seth Godin, is an advocate of the niche audience. In his opinion, brands should identify and focus on a specific group of people all with the same wants/needs/interests. The key is discovering a niche audience that connects with your brand and will ultimately result in growth.
Yet, some brands steer away from strategies that involve niche audiences, choosing to target a wider audience instead. They are fooled by the size, believing the smaller the audience the smaller the conversion, when, actually, the opposite is true.
Don’t be the brand that misses out on growth because of misconceptions.
This article will show exactly how important of a role niche audiences play, and how brand managers can find the right, winning audience and grow.
Why Niche Audiences Are Important
They Will Help You Beat the Competition
86% of consumers will decide which brand to support based on their authenticity. And what better way to be authentic than to focus on a specific demographic’s needs rather than trying to sell to everyone. The more specific you are toward a certain niche, the fewer the companies that are uniquely positioned to compete for your audiences’ attention.
However, note that for this strategy to work, brand managers really have to become intimate with their niche audience. They must continually find better ways to meet consumers’ needs to win their brand loyalty.
They Will Help You Increase Profit
A recent study in Germany found that 10.92 million fully agree with the statement “A branded product simply has to be more expensive, the quality is higher too.” Of course, there will be a certain number of people who don’t agree with the statement but that is not the point here.
The point is that if a brand has a product that fulfills the needs of a niche demographic, these customers will not mind paying a higher price for a product or service they feel they cannot get elsewhere. They will become loyal customers. This won’t happen with a catch-all brand strategy of trying to convert everyone.
Ben Arndt, Business Manager at DUNK, found this out for himself:
“Soon after launching brand campaigns that targeted the general population rather than a niche audience, I knew we’d made a poor error of judgment. By looking over our order histories, I saw that 95% of our sales were coming from 18-39-year-old males who resided in one of six capital cities. We set up new, targeted campaigns with a $1k spend and generated 10x the value as a result.”
They Will Decrease Marketing Costs
As well as increasing profit, niche audiences allow brand managers to spend less on their marketing efforts. Target lists lead to the creation of sales and marketing materials with a personalized message that consumers gravitate toward. Plus, instead of spending lots of money to reach a wider group of people and have fewer conversions, brand managers can spend less money reaching a more specific group of people who want your product.
How to Find Your Niche Audience
The key to finding your niche audience is audience segmentation. Audience segmentation is a strategy that involves digging deep to identify subgroups within a general audience that you can target with more tailored messaging. These subgroups can be based on a wide range of demographics.
Finding a niche is similar to identifying your target market, but in this process, you’ll go even further to focus on your most dedicated customers. However, it’s one thing to go deep into your audience, and another to be able to do so and obtain accurate data.
Too many brand managers operate on the basis of guesswork and gut feeling. If you really want to find the right niche audience and accelerate growth, you need reliability. Brand tracking software is the most stable tool you can use to follow the next steps.
Ask the Right Questions
The process of finding your niche audience begins with a good old-fashioned brainstorm. As yourself the following questions about your current audience:
- How old are they?
- Where do they live?
- What professions do they work in?
- What are their hobbies or interests?
- Do they have children?
- How frequently do they travel?
… and so on. The answers to these questions will help you identify who are the people most benefiting from your product or service, and whom you can build a niche audience around.
Move Away From Traditional Demographics
Traditional demographics are mostly seen as age, gender, location, income, and education. While these demographics may of course be important to comply with your brand guidelines, don’t limit yourself to them when building a niche audience. Instead, mix them with demographics that are specific to your brand.
For instance, if you sell baby clothing age may be an important factor (the typical age of parents), but it would help you produce more targeted marketing campaigns if you also determined if your audience were actually parents or not, the age of their children, if they will only purchase organic materials, etc.
It is also easier to target these types of audience as you can move away from campaigns based solely on gender, age, etc. and instead focus on campaigns that appeal more to their needs and values.
Research the Competition
While ultimately you want to target a niche that your competition hasn’t yet infiltrated, it is very beneficial to research how your competition is targeting niche audiences, especially if you are in the very early stages of business.
Take a look at the competitors’ marketing and see who they are targeting. What are they doing to keep them engaged? How is the audience responding? Perhaps you might find a niche within their niche that you can take and run with. Or, at the very least, you both target the same niche but you find ways to do so differently and, of course, better.
Finding and targeting the best niche audience for your brand is not difficult to do, and can bring a multitude of benefits. Just remember that this exercise is not a one-time thing. Your niche audience may change over time.
Whether a new product or service has gone to market, or your niche audience has eyes for another brand, it happens. Keep your head in the game and give yourself full permission to adjust your strategy accordingly, and you will continually have the right niche audience to accelerate growth.