Finding Your Right Niche

I carved out a niche with the Wagnerian repertoire since I am attracted by its theatrical intensity. - Placido Domingo

It is a thousand times easier to make money in niche markets than it is in large or general markets. I made millions in two niche markets, the karate business and the golf business. Both markets had mailing lists of between 12,000-18,000 prospects and so were easy to reach by mail. Both markets had limited competition when I entered and I had a knowledge of, and a passion for, both businesses.

I have written over forty books. The two most profitable ones, one making $150,000 the first year and the other over $200,000, were written for these specialized industries. The ones written for mainstream consumption took far longer to reach any kind of critical mass. The bigger the market, the harder and more costly it is to reach.

My first two martial arts schools were both the only schools in town. If you wanted to take karate, you had to take it from me. As various fads such as fitness kickboxing and karate aerobics came and went, I resisted the temptation to offer these and stayed focused on basic martial arts. Many of my friends in the industry did not and, while it helped a few, it hurt the majority of them by shifting the core focus of their business from martial arts to fitness. It was a different client; they typically paid half of what a karate student paid and stayed involved an even shorter time.

Given the choice to compete with all the national chains and open an auto parts store selling everything, or an auto parts store that specializes in vintage Jaguars, the choice is easy. There are mailing lists and even magazines dedicated to the vintage Jag niche market, and because it’s a niche market you will be able to charge more.

Be sure to remember that if you get into the model train business because you love model trains, you are now in the business of SELLING model trains, not merely collecting and running them.

The more specialized your market, the greater your chance of success.

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