In this video, I revisit nailing your niche. This is largely going to be sharing some kind of inner thoughts or insights that I have had recently about our niches, and an expansion of what I think we need to take into account when finding and defining our niche.
I continually revisit my niche: how I describe the work that I do, and who I do it with, to make sure that it is still relevant and appropriate.
I always say that niche is a journey and not a destination, because I know that my messaging has changed about what I do and what niche I fit into as my business and practice has evolved.
I’ve said that your niche is a combination of who you are, your background – and this could be your personal and professional background – your areas of experience and expertise.
This also includes if you are a subject matter expert in a particular area, what you are particularly gifted at and who you get your best results from working with, because all of these are filters through which you interact with the world around you.
And it that might not be that every single client that you’ve worked with is your ideal client. Perhaps you’re starting to see a bit of a pattern emerge about who you really resonate with, who you know you have your best results and who your particular work really lands with.
Finally, you need to bring in what you are passionate about.
But I’ve realized – last week – when I was mulling over the concept of niche, that your niche – which is your clear and concise message about the area that you really excel in – needs to be linked to your higher purpose.
In other words, it needs to be linked to something bigger than you: perhaps a legacy that you want to leave. Simon Sinek, talks about your big WHY, why you do what you do. Please take the time to watch his powerful TEDtalk on the topic.
But definitely your niche needs to be directly linked to what makes you tick deep down inside: the kind of way that you want to leave the world, a better place for having been in it.
This also what made me realize that, ever since I went into business for myself, the underlying thing that I was passionate about doing was to help my clients become more successful, get more business, and create sustainable and successful businesses and practices.
Why? Because that, indirectly, helps me impact on unemployment in this country, and around the world. Unemployment is something that I’m really passionate about – particularly living in South Africa, where we have an enormously high unemployment rate.
Employment creates opportunities for education, for raising subsequent generations out of poverty and for breaking the cycle of poverty and under-privilege. My heart breaks for young graduates or school leavers who are unable to get work.
So what happens when my clients become more successful?
First, they’ll be so busy delivering their coaching and training, consulting, or whatever it is that they do that falls into their zone of genius, that all of a sudden, they find that they don’t have time for the admin anymore, or perhaps social media content re-purposing.
They’ll start to calculate the cost of spending time on doing their own admin, marketing or other repetitive work, versus the cost of outsourcing it to virtual assistants at a lower hourly rate.
I’ve been through this exact process – the process of letting go of a few things, of letting go of my need to control and be perfect.
Identifying what I could outsource was a huge relief off my shoulders when my business got to the point where I was able to outsource.
Now, that means that my clients are able to impact unemployment positively – indirectly through me. But they can only do so if they become more successful in their own businesses. In addition, their success means that they will be able to do the same calculation that I did, and decide what is worth their time focusing on versus what is not worth their time.
But let’s look at it from another angle: with greater success in your business, it’s safe to assume that you will have increased discretionary income. This spills over into your private life, where you can now afford more help around the home, or to go out for meals where you give the waiter a generous tip for good service.
You’d be able to indulge your children in a greater range of extra-mural activities and would be able to invest in good quality mentors, trainers and so on. Your family would benefit too.
It means that you would be able to indulge in your favourite hobbies – buying supplies or investing in equipment that you need. It all cascades down, with unexpected underlying layers as you become more successful.
And if YOU are able to share the love, it means that I have indirectly impacted unemployment levels and lived out my purpose through your success.
I think that we all want to leave some kind of a legacy and make a difference in other people’s lives, and I think that coaching is a really profound way of doing exactly that.
But the point that I wanted to make is: when you link your niche directly to your higher purpose, it won’t necessarily change what you’re doing. But it makes your work more focused, directed and mean-filled.
I encourage you to ask these questions:
- Is the work that I am doing linked to my higher purpose?
- Does this work help me fulfill my purpose in life?
- Does it enable me to a difference in somebody’s life?
- Does my higher purpose link directly to the work that I do and the messaging that I send out about that work?
- Do I talk about the link between my higher purpose and the work that I do?
- Do my clients really know what motivates and drives me – what gets me up in the morning?
So, again, is the work that you do, who you do it with the way that you do it directly linked to your legacy work or your higher purpose?
I really invite you to reflect on that question. As I said, this was just really sharing my own kind of stream of consciousness and my own thinking on the topic. So, you know, I hope it lands with you. And I hope that it gets you thinking and that it adds another level and layer when you are thinking about your niche, and creating clear messaging about your business and what you offer.
Start with your higher purpose and look at how you define your niche. Make sure that the two are linked, or if they’re not, kind of tease out the message that you’re sending out about your niche and and see where there might be links to your higher purpose.
Just to remind you about my original standpoints on finding defining your niche, and the aspects that I believe it encompasses: it’s about who you are, what your personal and professional background is, what your experience is, your areas of expertise, subject matter expertise, and what you are gifted at and which types of clients or work with clients gives you the most joy.