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Yoda (Photo credit: Rhubarble)

As a small business marketing coach, I’ve been beating the drum of focused niching for as long as I can remember. Picking just one group of people to serve and to talk to them about only one thing I do, for most people is really really hard. The major reason why you should be talking to potential customers this way though is to position yourself as an expert and an authority in your industry so that customers are coming to you instead of you having to chase them. Here are 7 steps on how to become such an authority:

1. Think like a leader. Leaders aren’t focused on trying to maintain the status quo. They’re focused on doing what must be done to ensure growth and profitability in the future.
2. Innovate. New things get noticed. This means you can’t be afraid to present something new to your market, even if it’s just a variation or an addition to an already-existing product or service.
3. Keep the lines of communication open. Your clients are critical to your business. The moment you lose touch with your market, you’re done.
4. Publicly address industry changes. Detail your opinion, along with tangible ways to make the most of it. This can allow you to be seen as an industry leader and potentially increase traffic to your site as people begin to search out information and answers about these changes.
5. Respect your time. . Your main responsibility is to continue growing, innovating and sharing your knowledge. Don’t allow people to suck up all your time with their questions or problems.
6. Develop your intuition. Your business life requires you to make difficult decision and sacrifices. Just remember that your intuition should get a vote, too. It’s not always about numbers and statistics.
7. Keep learning.  Study the great success and failures of your industry. Also learn from people outside of your industry to see which principals are transferable to what you’re doing.
via 7 Steps to Become an Authority in Your Industry.

Some people fall into their niche. It’s funny because the above 7 steps come naturally to some people. Woops, one day they turn around and because they’ve gone to a couple of green seminars and wrote a few blogs about how much they resent big business for polluting the air, they’ve become an environmental authority in their industry (this happened to a client of mine who ironically rejected niching and had Niche-Phobia).
Do yourself a huge favour and pick a niche, then do the 7 steps above to make sure you become THE go-to person for your audience.
Need more chicken soup for your biz? Follow me on Twitter, friend me on Facebook or connect with me on LinkedIn –and let’s talk!
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