Why consultants don’t like niches

There are few ways to dominate a market. You can go head to head, you can change the game, or you can choose a niche and dominate it. Often consultants are reluctant to chase niches. Why? Because they feel their expertise can be valuable for multiple industries, sectors, type of clients. They are often right. They can do that. The problem is not on the delivery side though. The problem is to attract clients and build authority in that way. In particular for young and small consulting firms. They end up spreading too thin, chasing multiple priorities and targets, getting poor results, and burning out pretty quickly. After working 20 years with business owners and leaders on building a winning strategy, I realised that many struggles to identify the right niche. They tend to follow market trends, capital investments, or their intuition based on their expertise. This is not the most effective way to identify, find and dominate a niche. Here’s the thing. There are other factors that count most when it comes to select the right niche:
  1. The industry must have a pressing issue
  2. You must have a specific, clear and results-driven solution for this issue
  3. The ideal clients should be “moving”, so they already search for solutions
  4. They are willing to pay to get their problems solved
  5. You must be passioned about this market and keen to work with these client
When I coach consultants, we go deep on this. We want to make sure there is clarity from the first day. This is pivotal for success. When you are new in the market or you haven’t been much successful so far, niche is the best and easiest way to get traction and build a business. But don’t worry. You can still serve other niches or markets later. Once you have a name, you have a track record, you have happy clients, you are a go-to-person to solve problems in a niche, you can start targeting adjacent markets. At that point, you will have the credibility you need to do so. Remember. It’s all about defining the ideal clients. You don’t need to be the best consultant in the world. You need to be the best consultant in their world.
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