Finding a Niche

Boy, what a busy week! I’m learning lots of new stuff from Alex and I can really see things starting to come together. For the first time, I feel like I have a clear path to follow and today I’m really excited to share with you what I’ve learned about niche marketing.

As I mentioned in my last post, if you don’t know what niche you’re going to target, how can you possibly start setting up a site or creating a product to sell? Alex taught me that niche marketing is somewhat of an art, but it’s one that you can easily master. He also taught me that, unless you really understand your market, it doesn’t matter what niche you go into, most of your efforts will fall flat.

I’ll explain what that means in a sec.

The first thing I learned is that I needed to create a list of the areas I either know a lot about or want to know a lot about. I then had to order that list starting with the ones I’m most passionate about with the items I’m least passionate about at the end. According to Alex, creating a successful online business is easy, but it does take work. So, you want to pick something that will keep you motivated throughout the process.

Now, let’s say your passion is gardening. How do you find out whether or not it would be a profitable niche to go into? Well, that’s a pretty broad subject, so first you need to narrow it down to a specific area within gardening that people are either having trouble with or want to know more about. For example, do you focus on landscaping, raised garden beds, or different types of plants, etc.? There are literally hundreds of areas within the gardening niche that you could target, so how do you narrow it down?

Most methods I’ve studied recommended doing something called keyword research. While this can be valuable, it only gives you what search terms people are using. It doesn’t actually get you into their heads, as Alex says. You have to really understand what problem people are having before you can put together a product that solves that problem. This is what I meant when I mentioned really understanding your market.  Doing your niche research this way gets you there and, if done well, it makes creating your product much easier.

Here’s how I did it.

When I first started looking at which niche I was going to go into, Alex had me search online for all of the forums I could find that pertained to my area of interest or expertise. After I narrowed down the list of forums to only those that are getting the most views and responses, he then had me spend time reading through those forums to determine what problems people are having in that particular area and make a list of those problems. This gave me a list of exactly what people are looking for. In theory, I could create niche products to solve each one of these problems, but there was one more step . . .

Now that I had a list of problems that people are trying to solve, Alex had me search for what products are currently offered online for these areas. According to Alex, the more competition, the better. Now, I have to admit, I thought he was crazy when I first heard this. After all, the keyword research guys had taught me that you want to find areas for which there are a lot of searches, but very little competition. Well, I’d tried that already and hadn’t made any money doing it, so I figured I should at least hear Alex out. He told me that I should go into an area where it’s already proven that people are willing to spend money to solve their problem. In other words:

You want to be in an area where people are already building products and people are already buying those products.

When I thought about it, this makes sense. An area where people are selling and others are buying is a sure sign that there is a thriving marketplace. It means that there is a lot of demand in that area and this is what you want. Alex says not to worry about competition. Once you’ve created your product, you can potentially partner with some of your competitors and market your product to their customers and vice versa. Brilliant!!

I hope all of this makes sense. Let me know what questions you have in the comments section below.



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