Why Being Afraid To Niche Is A Waste Of Time

“Jerry” is what I call a brilliant developer.

His genius lies in how easily he moves between the worlds of his clients and his hard-core developers of code who’d be happy if they never had to speak to a single client ever again.

He seems to almost intuitively understand what clients are trying to achieve with their websites and digital marketing—and easily translates it to his team who turns it into actual working sites and systems.

The only problem?

He set up his firm as a local web developer, serving businesses in his relatively small market. He worked with the local college, a couple of financial advisors and a handful of retailers and restaurants.

Yes, he brought in enough business to keep the lights on and pay his team, but he hungered for more interesting projects. For a bigger playground.

And yet he was afraid to specialize—to build a niche beyond being the fix-it web guy in his city. After all he reasoned, he had payroll to meet, rent to pay and a young family relying on his income.

I’d like to say that Jerry simply conquered his fear, but in fact the universe did him a favor—his financial advisor sites attracted some industry visibility and slowly sent him new referrals.

Clients with viable businesses and healthy margins, not afraid to invest in their digital real estate.

Emboldened, he gradually created specific messaging for financial advisors and began being visible where they might see him more easily. He started speaking their language. And his business grew.

He was doing more of what he enjoyed most at the higher price tags his new cadre of clients would pay for someone who understood their challenges.

Jerry’s fear going in to niching was completely understandable.

And yet, it was a waste of time.

Had he looked to his existing revenue and favorite work, he’d have zeroed in on the financial advisor space at least two to three years sooner.

He’d have avoided staring at the ceiling when he couldn’t sleep, wondering how he could make his work exciting again.

He’d have enjoyed not only a steadier revenue stream, but the peace of mind that comes from knowing you’re not tied to the business you can drum up in your own backyard.

Being afraid is surely a sign to pay attention. But making all your decisions based on fear is no way to live.

Should you niche?

The answer is always yes if you want to build more than a lemonade stand. The how is a bit trickier. Read this for a simple way to start or listen to The Business of Authority episode on why specialists rule.

Spend your time deciding on which is the right niche for you and your business instead of being afraid to pull the trigger.

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