One of the most important decisions you’ll ever make as an affiliate marketer is choosing your niche.
Your chances of success are much bigger if you focus and cater to the needs of a tiny niche. This is a proven way to find which niche matches your interests and is profitable. But first, let’s see what is niche.
What is a niche
In the marketing business, a niche is an opportunity for a business to offer a product or service that is not offered by other businesses.
Or simply said, a niche is a group of people sharing the same interest or experiencing the same situation in life.
For example, solo female travelers might be a niche based on travel as a common interest. You can narrow this niche down to solo female travelers above 50. Another example based on common experience is mothers who have experienced miscarriage.
A niche should be specific but still, have enough people to be profitable. On the other hand, the market for this niche should not be saturated, meaning there is demand and not too much competition that you’ll never stand out.
Follow these steps to find your perfect niche!
Identify your interests and skills
The perfect niche is a balance between your interests and the market need. So to start with you need to identify your interests and skills. Is there something you love to do in your free time, or that you’d do even if you weren’t getting paid for it?
What do people regularly tell you you’re good at? What special skills you possess or want to possess?
There are many other questions you can ask yourself or exercises you can do to figure out where you want to invest your time and energy in the coming years. I got loads of ideas from this practical guide “Inspired Destiny”, written by John Demartini.
I wish it was enough to figure out what your want to do, but to move from a hobby to a lucrative online business you will need to make sure there is a profitable market for your niche.
Make sure your niche is profitable
Some niches are so common sense that it is obvious they are profitable. For example, how to market is a big one. Like:
- how to create a blog
- how to make a healthy meal in just 10 minutes
- how to lose weight
- how to become an affiliate marketer
For other niches, it is good to evaluate them before you decide to spend money and time to market to them. Niches are easy to find and easy to evaluate.
Use these 3 metrics to evaluate a niche:
- Size – you want to have a niche large enough to have plenty of buyers;
- Proven buyers – make sure you are approaching proven buyers, people who already buy similar products on the internet;
- Ways to reach them – today you can reach almost any group of people by paid advertising and social media.
Not that many people buy cars or art on the internet. But many people have automated, recurring purchases of dog food from their favorite online shop.
To find this out, search Google yourself for similar products. Use conditioning like “The best books on miscarriage” or “Best price vacation rentals in Portugal”
People who search for the best price, or coupon, or best deal are not just curious they are ready to buy.
In the marketing jargon, we call these people hot customers as opposite of cold customers, who are at the beginning of their journey and are just getting aware of their need or problem.
If you are just starting up your online career, make your life easier and target the hot customers, those who are ready to buy!
- Cold customers are not aware they have a need or problem. For example, a person eating hamburgers and ice cream every day and enjoying them.
- Warm customers are aware they need to lose weight, cause the doc said so, but they have no concrete solution in mind.
- Hot customers are ready to buy and are already searching and comparing specific solutions, for example, “how to lose weight without exercise”
From these google search, I can see that iherb.com and vitaminemanufacture.co.uk are paying big money to Google to place their ads on the top of the search results.
They know this is a good investment because people searching on those keywords are hot customers, ready to buy.
In a similar way you can use the google search to understand if a given niche can be profitable for you.
Ways to reach them
Now that you have a profitable niche matching your skills and interests, you can start reaching out, speaking in their language.
Or even better, before speaking, understand their needs, problems, dreams and desires in great detail. In this way, you can endorse and market only affiliate products and services that truly add value.
Technically there are many ways to reach your customers. I will name a few:
- Solo ad – pay to some other business with established clientele in your niche to broadcast your ad;
- Facebook advertisement is also a very cost-effective way to understand and target a specific niche
- Ads on popular blogs or podcasts frequented by your niche
- Moderate a Facebook group on a topic of great interest to your niche. See where your customers are hanging out and participate in their conversations, to establish authority.
This list is far from complete, but that is not the point.
The key message here is that it is very important to decide on the right niche. All the rest will follow as there are so many ways today to reach your potential customers. Just remember this:
Marketing to everyone is marketing to no one. Be as specific and narrow as possible when choosing your niche and make sure it is something you love and can be monetized!