Finding a niche in business and becoming specialized can have an outsized impact on business and growth.
Speaking from experience, specializing can do more than make you memorable. It can help you win business, grant instant credibility and insulate you from your competitors.
Let’s drill into why specializing can be a great direction to bring your business.
It’s easy to be a generalist
We’ve all heard the saying before. Jack of all trades, master of none (by the way, not the full saying…) and there is some truth to this. It’s quicker to be a generalist, it can offer more broad opportunities. It can also get you called things like door stop since you’ll take anything that walks through the door. While generalists can bring great insight and connect the dots between various industries it takes more dedication and time to become a specialist and that usually means a slower ramp up and journey. The benefit to it taking a while to become specialized is that most people won’t make the effort. This is called your ‘moat.’ It’s more difficult to do and that makes you more of a unicorn than everyone else out there.
You’ll have instant credibility
Let’s say you’re shopping for something sports related. Let’s be even more specific, let’s say you want to buy something for outdoor sports. Sure you could go to Walmart or Target or Dick’s OR you could go to Bass Pro Shops or REI. Bass Pro Shops and REI carry instant credibility in the outdoor sports marketplace compared to generalist stores. They are specialized and everything from the equipment they carry to the knowledge of their employees will be geared and tailored for the client that needs and wants something from an outdoor sports vendor. Having instant credibility makes you an authority in your subject matter over ANY generalist, no matter the size. Are you more capable than the generalist, hopefully, yes, but in this case perception is even more important than the reality. As a specialist, you can own your space.
Your messaging will be razor sharp
Messaging matters. The tighter your messaging the easier you’ll be able to solve for a problem. Chiropractor? Great, you help people who could use help with mobility. Chiropractor that specializes in car accident victim’s? Now you’ll know exactly who your clients are, what their pain points are (no pun intended) and will be able to speak directly to them much more clearly than someone that sometimes helps accident victims and other times helps athletes and also supports an aging population. See the difference? You’re not muddying the water with a number of people you’re helping.
Finding your niche and specializing can mean a lot of different things. I can work only with police officers and that makes me specialized. Or, I could work with police officers, fire fighters and EMTs while specializing in tactical physical fitness. The first example is a niche in police officers, the 2nd is a niche in tactical physical fitness.
One last piece of advice for all of you want-to-be experts out there.
If you’re going to choose a niche and specialize, choose carefully and don’t be afraid to pivot!
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