Scott recently wrote about saturated niches. If you missed that post, make sure and read it, especially the last paragraph. Niche marketing is without a doubt the way of the foreseeable future. Google makes that perfectly apparent. Gone are the "Wal-Mart" days of sites like Buy.com that stock everything but specialize in nothing. Here to stay are the small sites that sell a few of the best products at good prices, so how do you break into those niches?
Here are a few pieces of advice from someone who has successfully broken into niches with no budget and competed against companies that spend thousands per day.
- Start with something you know. The easiest way to build a presence in a niche is through expertise. While you may not be an expert in the niche you've chosen, it's easy to fake if you know something about that niche. You may not have ever purchased office furniture, but if you've sat in it and used it for the last five years, you know something about different chairs, desks, layout, filing systems and more. Start with something you know and writing for and promoting in that niche is much easier.
- Build a strong base before showing your colors. It is a common war tactic to try to lure the enemy into a trap. With your niche, your website is your trap, it's what wins the war (generating you a profit). So before you try to get those visitors to your website, have something to show them. If you're starting with an empty website and paying for customers, they'll leave without giving you a chance. I always have 5-10 pages of the website ready and waiting before doing any kind of marketing. This gives new customers something to look at and gives you a professional presence.
- Never stop writing. While 5-10 pages of good content can get you a long way in your niche, you can never outgrow any niche. You might disagree, but I have been writing in one niche for 4 years. To date I have nearly 400 articles on a niche that is pretty small. Most of them are long tail keywords but just about all of them brought in a few visitors, and that is what you want.
In niche marketing you may never have the advertising budget of a Fortune 500, but that doesn't mean you can't compete with them and steal some of their customers!
Brandon Hopkins has websites dedicated to over 100 different niches and is currently working on a free website hosting project called 22 Gigs.