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We spend a lot of time working with our clients on the concept of niche planning in their business.  Our belief is that every small business should be a niche business.  When you develop a business based on a niche you tend to have better profits and more efficient operations. 

This leads to a better service experience for your customers and clients because you become an expert at what this segment of the population is interested in.  This allows you to provide services and products that your niche customers are truly interested in and will appreciate.

When a niche is a market segment instead of a niche

We find that many people we speak with think they have a niche, but instead they have a market segment they concentrate on.  A market segment might be soap, people who own businesses or manufacturers. 

The examples above all are very broad market segments.  When one says a segment like those above are their niches, they really don’t have a good understanding of what a niche is.  There is no way that you can develop a customer experience that takes the special needs of your customers in when your developing a program for manufacturers.

When a service is not a niche

I spend a lot of time working with clients on the topic of exit planning.  Some might say that exit planning is a niche.  We don’t believe this is true.  Exit planning is a service, just like tax planning, estate planning or financial planning.  All of them are general services that are impossible to build a niche around.

Like market segments general services are things that one might start with when building a niche for their company.  For example, the skill set that is required for doing exit planning with a specialty manufacturing company would be different than doing exit planning with those who own dental practices. 

Yes, we are using the same general word, exit planning about both business groups, but the process that one would use for helping each group leave their business would likely be very different.  And, if you don’t understand the in’s and out’s of those businesses, you likely are not going to do as good a job as one who is an expert in either of those niches.

It’s being able to define a very narrow market segment that makes for great niche management.  I believe that putting together and spending the time and effort learning how to service niches pays off in a big way.

I'm always interested in hearing your comments.  Please either email me at Jpatrick@stage2planning.com or click on this link to set up a conversation at your convnience.

Josh Patrick

I’ve put together a special report on how to segment your customer base and develop a niche.  Please click on the button below and you’ll be taken to our sign up page for this report.  I believe you’ll find this report useful.


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Topics: enterprise value, niche planning, niche management

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