How To Turn Your “Commodity” Into A Scarce, High Quality And Expensive Niche

Any niche (and any industry) can fall into a rut.

Take the canned salmon business. Here in the U.S., industrial canned salmon has long been on a par with canned tuna—slightly pricier at around $4 a can—but far removed from the taste of fresh fish.

Foodies would steer clear, viewing tinned salmon for pantry emergencies only.

A handful of fish lovers decided that was just wrong and have been shaking up a boring commodity business.

Fishwife (don’t you love that name?), Wildfish Cannery and Salmon Sisters have created artisanal versions of the old stand-bys.

And instead of $4 a pop, they routinely charge $10 to $15 and sometimes more.

Even better: their offerings routinely sell out.

Scarcity, high quality and a price tag that screams “this is special” put them in high demand.

You can see where I’m going with this…

It’s just one more real-life example of how there is always room in even a saturated industry for a niche to emerge.

One that satisfies a need that the big boys ignore since it doesn’t play to their strengths.

And of course, these new players aren’t following the old game plan.

Instead, they’re building engaged communities around their big idea—that canned fish doesn’t have to suck. They’re harnessing social media with distinctive voices, targeting foodies who spread the word.

They’re investing in some serious content marketing. As in recipes for their products, founders appearing on food-centric blogs, podcasts and media sites, and of course commissioning lush photography featuring the experiences you too can have when you eat artisanal canned fish.


So, what does this mean for soloists selling expertise?

It means that when it feels like everyone in your space is doing the same thing the same way and there isn’t room for you, that you might be wrong.

That there is room for another choice.

The beauty the salmon people discovered is that you don’t have to satisfy a million people to create a vibrant niche business—you just have to find a slice of your people.

People who think like you and are actually craving a fresh alternative.

And then you create for them. You lead them to the transformations you do best and connect them to others in the tribe.

It’s a whole lot easier than canning fish.

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