I was speaking with someone today about marketing niches.
She had just given a presentation at a real estate office on creating a marketing niche, and told me how she encouraged people in attendance to market to a niche that they were familiar with or even passionate about.
She gave the following example:
One of the real estate people in the audience was into classic cars. She asked if he spent any time doing business networking with other classic car collectors. She suggested that this would be an ideal marketing niche.
Ideal Niche = Passionate Affiliation
Your very first marketing step is to create affiliations, and then get attention and build familiarity within that affiliation. Because you have that affiliation, you're no longer a stranger.
We often think of the obvious affiliations, such as the chamber of commerce, a leads group or professional associations. But in today's eZine, let's look at less obvious (and more passionate) affiliations.
Start by making an inventory of the following things:
What are your hobbies?
What are you already involved in?
What are you truly passionate about?
What are you an expert at (outside of business)?
What charity do you support?
What would you spend your time doing if you retired?
Now do a little research and make a list of clubs, organizations, activities, etc. that are associated with your top interest.
Say you're the guy who collects classic cars.
Is there a club in your area? Do they have shows or special events? Do they do any charity work? Do they feature these cars in parades? What about suppliers for these kind of cars?
Before too long you've tracked down several possible affiliations.
Once you've found an affiliation, joined a group, spent some time and gotten involved, an amazing thing happens: You start to develop relationships. People become familiar with you. They feel comfortable with you. They like and trust you. You're one of them. And this paves the way to market yourself.
People will always ask you what you do.
Now if our car nut says what most real estate people say when people ask them what they do, he'll say, "I sell real estate" or "I help you find the home of your dreams." Yawn.
No, you need to tie-in and leverage your affiliation/passion.
Let's start again: What do you do? "I specialize in real estate for people who don't have enough space for their classic car collection."
Now that's interesting.
It's interesting because you have something special to offer people who collect classic cars. After all, they have special needs for real estate. And since you're also into classic cars, you understand those needs.
You can find a way to do this with any affiliation, with any business. Identify what you're interested in or even passionate about, and then customize a service for just these kind of people.
If you're a financial planner and you're involved in the local food bank, say that, "I specialize in financial plans for people who are committed to giving back to the community."
If you're a results coach and are into local jazz events, say that, "I work with people to increase their income so that they can spend more time visiting jazz festivals." (I'm waiting for someone to say that to me!)
Yes, it may take a little while to find the right groups and affiliations to fit both your passion and business, but these kind of efforts can yield big returns. I promise you, it's better than spending time at generic networking events where everyone is using the same old tired messages.
Find your passion and plug it into your business.
The More Clients bottom line: Creating affiliations (that you have a passion about) is the starting point for every marketing plan. If you can creatively tie that affiliation into your business, you'll not only get more business, you'll have more fun doing it.
What passionate affiliations have you been able to leverage in your business? Please share on the More Clients Blog.