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Starting a Home-Based Business - Choosing the Right Niche

Date Added: May 15, 2008 03:02:48 PM

In order to succeed in any business, it is crucial to target the right niche. Any oversight in this aspect can break your business. However, when you are starting a home-based business, it is important to realize and accept that you cannot fight the muscle of the multimillionaire companies that have all the financial muscle to promote their products and services. This understanding and realization should not make you believe that you cannot succeed in what you are doing. On the other hand, this knowledge allows you to adapt and devise strategies that dodge the larger-than-life aura of these companies.

The strategies that large companies adopt are totally different from what a work-at-home person should adopt. So, if you have been working in the corporate office of a large company, you may need to unlearn various skills before you start your home-based business.

Large companies generally play the ‘mass’ game. They sell products or services that are likely to appeal to the masses and therefore need to support the offering with a large distribution network, promotions and a large sales force. This support requires investments – something that a large business can afford. There are some large companies that do adopt the strategy of niche marketing. However, in such cases, they tend to price the offering at a really high price to be able to justify the investments behind it. If you are to combat the large companies, it is obvious that you can do so if you adopt the ‘niche’ strategy rather than the mass one.

Choosing a niche and then marketing effectively to them is something that a small business can probably do better than a large corporate. The first step in choosing a niche is to focus your energies in trying to find a need that is not satisfied adequately. This will lead to your product or service idea, if you already do not have one. It might be a good idea to develop a conceptual framework of your offering and share it with some potential customers. Their reactions will give you some feedback about how appealing the idea is. You can additionally explore the financial value that is attributed to your idea as well. If you already have an idea in mind and want to sell it online, you might want to consider the people whom you want to target.

For example, even if your idea is to sell writing instruments that are inscribed with a customized message, you might want to decide the focused targeted market you would like to market your product to. Even though the appeal of the product is likely to be fairly universal, you might want to specialize in being the choice of writing instruments when it comes to corporate gifting. You could also choose to be the writing instrument for college students by making the offering flashier. You may need to adapt your offering based on the targeted niche that you select.

For example, if you choose the previous example, your writing instruments are likely to be classier, the colors you choose will probably be subtle and the customizations will be inscribed in an elegant font. If you choose college students as you niche, you are likely to choose writing instruments with sporty colors, the designs are likely to be bold and the customizations are likely to involve messages related to friendship and love. Stay away from choosing mass market products that cannot be customized. Choosing a product that has a high outlay is also not a good idea, when you are starting out. People may not be so willing to part with large sums of money while shopping on the Internet especially when you are starting out. When you are marketing your product or services on the Internet, the issue of credibility needs some thought. You can increase your offering as you go along.

After you have decided on the offering and the target market that you want to go after, you should make sure that you get your message across to them effectively. This can be done by choosing the right means of communication. If you plan to market writing instruments to teenagers, choose to advertise on teen sites or use offline marketing by leaving flyers in the college library. The main idea behind choosing a niche audience is to be able to create a customized offering for specific people with a specific need - a need that is large enough to give you a significant return on investment but is not large enough to attract the multimillionaire companies.

Article courtesy Work at Home Forum








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