Friday, November 9, 2012

Marketing Tips for Newbies

When I started my online business a few years back, I had a problem, among many. Understanding the word "niche." Not that I don't know what it means in the ordinary world. But things take on different meanings in the Internet business.
I now have a pretty good idea what it is and how important it is for newbies wanting to earn a decent income online.
A "niche" is a distinct segment or group of a particular market. It can be:
- A group based on sex, age, ethnicity, educational background, moral standards;
- A group bound together by the same interests like photography, diving, sports, etc;
- A group sharing the same problems, i.e., back problems, cancer patients, those with erectile dysfunction, or other age-related or weight-related concerns.
Why niche marketing?
In simple terms, you don't sell refrigerators to Eskimos or bicycles to paraplegics, would you?
People going into online business hope to earn fast. So they immediately immerse themselves into selling products. This approach has fatal flaws like:
- Selling a product to a market not interested in it;
- Selling a product with fierce competition, obsolete or not in style.
These can be avoided by marketing to a niche.
Choosing a profitable niche:
First, not all niches are profitable. Seniors, others say, is a profitable niche. Others say that most seniors are living off retirement income and don't use computers anymore. Finding a product to avoid the differences of opinions such as the above can be a challenge. At any rate, the following can guide a newbie find a profitable niche.
- Look for a large number of people who are online a great deal of their time:
The cycle of life is continuous. We all grow old, and then die. Meantime some are born, grow old and become computer savvy. This is the baby-boomer cycle and they have a huge appetite for online products. Facebook and Twitter are made popular by people like these.
- People looking for a solution to a problem:
Everybody has a problem. We all have problems. And you can find these problems in forums. Visit forums of your chosen field to know what people are looking for.
- Their problems make them emotionally hungry for a solution:
I read a news story the other day that obesity, worldwide, is now a tsunami in proportions. Visit ClickBank and you will find out that its most sought-after products are those related with weight loss.
- People who will spend money to solve their emotional problems:
The 2009 sales of Viagra was $466 million, up compared to last year. Visit a Lifestyle forum and you will find people looking for solutions to their size and staying power problems. The dieting industry is a billion dollar business.
- Are not well-served by the market.
A lot of people consider seniors, those in the 50 and above bracket, a burden. But they do have needs, i.e., welfare homes, hobbies to keep them occupied, physical fitness programs, dieting regimen, etc.
They key to sustainable online business is to find a niche you have a very strong emotional and mental attachment to. It will make you look convincing. Visit forums to find their needs and serve them. Inasmuch as niche demographics change, so must also change the range of products to offer to them.