Marketing is a constantly evolving field that employs the use of psychology, sociology,
economics, population distribution, and many other streams of data. For marketing to work successfully, a business must communicate the need for a product or service directly to the consumers who are searching for that particular product or service. In the past, this process was relatively simple. Consumer needs in the United States were not highly varied. Most consumers in a specific age bracket or socioeconomic status bracket had the same tastes, styles, and basic needs.
Today, however, that trend has dramatically shifted. Consumers, today, are individual and unique. A massive, blanket marketing strategy may be ineffective because it fails to appeal to the unique sensibilities of specific consumer niches. On the other hand, niche marketing is becoming one of the best marketing techniques in the world. By subdividing industries into smaller and smaller groups, businesses are discovering that they can appeal to huge numbers of consumers.
Leslie Van Zee, the Manager of Marketing at Vantage Local, recently created a list of six tactics for niche marketing that businesses can use to expand consumer activity and increase customer interest. The impressive popularity of this post is further evidence that businesses are starting to examine niche marketing as the ultimate solution to stagnating marketing tactics.
The Introduction of Niche Marketing
Niche marketing is the process of dividing your target audience into smaller subgroups and then creating campaigns that advertise products and services specifically developed to appeal to those subgroups. Generally speaking, the smaller and more specific the created niches are, the more successful each marketing campaign will be for those niches. By creating an ad campaign that speaks directly to a specific group of consumers, businesses are able to entice consumers to respond to campaigns and invest in products and services.
How Do Consumers Respond?
Consumers are responding to niche marketing efforts very positively, simply because they feel that their individuality and unique needs are being valued and appreciated by businesses that employ these strategies. A consumer is more likely to respond to an advertisement that deals with a specific consumer need as opposed to a generic advertisement that invites the consumer to seek out more information about products and services.
Company Benefits of Niche Marketing
Some businesses are hesitant to employ niche marketing strategies because they feel that the reach of each individual marketing campaign is severely limited with niche marketing. For example, a shoe business may not want to create an entire marketing campaign for high-heeled dress shoes because the number of consumers to whom that ad is relevant is much smaller than a general ad for multiple shoe styles. It’s important to recognize, however, that the response to the specific ad will be much higher than the generic ad simply because women who are interested in that particular shoe style will be more interested in the advertisement. When an ad speaks directly to what a consumer needs, it is harder for that consumer to ignore the ad.
Niche marketing also eliminates a great deal of the competition that businesses encounter on the marketing stage. A restaurant may have hundreds of competitors in a specific location with which it is struggling and vying for consumer attention. If, however, that restaurant creates a niche marketing campaign that targets males in their 20s, the competition shrinks dramatically.
How to Niche Market Your Brand
To begin the process of niche marketing with your particular brand, you’ll need to start subdividing your target audience into small groups of consumers. You can subdivide with a variety of categories. When you reach a group that cannot be effectively divided anymore, you have created the most specific niche possible within your target audience. It may be helpful to consider an example of niche marketing.
A salon that markets to a wide variety of customers may have marketed with general campaigns in the past. Advertising the cost of a general haircut may have been quite successful, in the past, at bring customers through the salon doors. Today, however, that’s likely not going to be the case. The different needs of consumers will dictate different marketing techniques for different niches. A sixty-year-old woman needs to receive different information about the salon than the parents of a thirteen-year-old boy in desperate need of a haircut.
First, the salon will divide its consumer audience into subgroups. These groups may include different ages, different locations, different races and genders, or even different socioeconomic statuses. For example, low income families may be attracted to marketing strategies that emphasize low prices and discounts. High income families, on the other hand, may be looking for information about salon service quality and expertise. The needs of the specific niche will dictate precisely how the salon approaches marketing techniques.
Without niche marketing, the consumers that were exposed to the marketing efforts of the salon may have assumed that the salon wasn’t exactly right for their needs. When the salon employs niche marketing efforts, however, each consumer feels that his or her specific needs are valued and met by the salon.
Niche Marketing for an Online Community
Niche marketing is especially beneficial for online marketing. In fact, some businesses develop a multitude of different websites that each market to a different niche of consumers. By adjusting the brand and the business’s presentation to different niche groups, a business is more likely to appeal to a wider variety of consumers. Companies that offer a wide variety of services and products may sell fewer of each of those products and services, but their total sales amount will be higher than a company that specializes in only a select few products or services.
Niche marketing is much simpler to perform with the use of social media networks and email marketing strategies. Social media allows you to easily filter your target audience into different niche subgroups simply by evaluating social profile information such as gender, age, occupation, interests, and even location. With email marketing and social network marketing, businesses can craft several different marketing campaigns at very little cost. These campaigns can be specifically designed for various niche subgroups, which will make each campaign more effective overall.