Do’s and don’ts for marketing to a niche audience

by | May 6, 2019 | Analysis, Public Relations

Niche marketing presents a unique challenge. A smaller audience, more intense competition—and more creativity required to stand out. Often, audiences in smaller niches are averse to changing or spending their hard earned money. So what are some of the best ways to market to these selective niches?

For this, we’ll use the example of a company that makes identification bands for athletes or individuals who spend time on their own. Let’s say a mountain biker loves to set off on trails on his own. One day, he’s involved in an accident with a tree, rendering him temporarily unconscious. Another biker finds him but is unable to determine who he is or who to contact.

The identification bracelet helps with this issue, providing an emergency contact number and vital medical information, such as whether or not the wearer has allergies or a condition that EMTs need to be aware of.

This is a specific product aimed at a specific group of people: active, independent individuals. So, marketing to this niche would theoretically be simple, right? Wrong.

Targeted marketing

Marketing to a niche requires a lot of targeting. Since not everyone would be a target customer for this brand, it’s important for the brand to identify targets to zero in on as customer bases. This could include hikers, motorcycle riders, or equestrians.

From there, the language changes. What may be proper sales language for a hiker will be different from that geared towards an equestrian. This complicates matters. Rather than a bigger, more far-reaching brand that can target just one group of customers, this niche has several different elements and each requires customization.

This is a big challenge to undertake. One of the best ways to properly prepare for marketing to these niches is to learn the language of that specific industry. Nothing is a bigger turn-off to those “in” that world than seeing a brand whose materials show how out of touch they are with the industry.

Learn the nuances of the market

Let’s say that the identification bracelet brand is marketing to motorcycle riders, specifically those who ride dirt bikes. On the marketing materials, a street bike is pictured, but the flyers are hung up at dirt bike tracks. Potential customers who may already be particular may not give the flyer a second glance simply due to the imagery.

The same could be said for marketing to equestrians. If a rider jumps their horse, then using a photo of a horse working cattle will not resonate with them. This is a simple concept, but it’s so often overlooked by brands who do not take the time to learn the industry they are attempting to reach.

Don’t be afraid to bring in a subject matter expert, even if it’s just temporary. Tweaking the language in the copy, approving the imagery used, and identifying the right target market (street bike riders or dirt bike riders? Serious hikers or trail runners? These are different markets!) are key to reaching a niche and establishing trust with its customer base.

Ronn Torossian
Ronn Torossian founded 5WPR, a leading PR agency..