Wayne Chia

Tag: niches

If your church buddies don’t understand what you do…. rejoice!

by on May.07, 2010, under Business, Muses

I chanced upon this interesting article:

“Now here’s a litmus test that will tell you if you’re in the right kind of business.” We were standing in the lobby of his church and someone was playing music in another room somewhere.

I said, “If you walk in that room and give one of your church buddies the elevator speech for your business, and they immediately understand it… you’re in the wrong business. If you’re starting a solo online biz, the only way you have a chance is if it’s a niche within a niche.

“If you tell them, ‘My business sells RS232 interfaces for computers made between 1995 and 2000 and we enable software communication with Unix blah blah blah’ they’ll have no idea what you just said. That’s probably a good niche.

“Or if you tell them, ‘I do property tax negotiations for landlords who’ve failed to file form GL632 and are in violation of the Underhill Act of 1964’ their eyes will glaze over because they don’t get it. That’s probably also good business to be in.

“You want to choose some teeny tiny hill and be the #1 king of that hill in the whole world.”

Now I really had a good laugh cause for the longest time, nobody in my church really understood what I was doing when I say “online customer engagement”, “customer communities” and “social media marketing(!!)”  (not that it’s anything new –  having “computational biology” as a college major gave me a fair share of glazed looks).

While I agree that niche markets are the way for businesses to win (don’t forget even Facebook started from just targeting ivy league colleges),  I would put a caveat to this though. It’s one thing to have  niche no one really know exists but it’s another thing NOT being able to explain what you do in terms simple enough for a 12th-grader to understand – especially when you’re trying to raise money for investment! The ability to simplify your business in words is an art that all business development, sales and marketers should master, no matter how complicated your business model may be.

But otherwise, I would take it as a compliment the next time a church member doesn’t understand what I really do.

Article source: perrymarshal.com

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