Why Niche and How to Get Started

Niche statements for freelancers

So…how’s that niche statement for your business coming along? “What’s a niche statement?!” you ask? Well, I suggested a couple weeks ago that finding your niche should be a New Year’s resolution. And I’m still curious if you’ve thought about yours.

Why nicheing out matters.

This may seem like an exercise in semantics or in marketing—but I promise you, having a niche statement will help you grow your business. How? Because not only does it help you narrow in on the core of what you currently do or want to be doing—it also helps other people remember and understand what you do. When you can succinctly and easily tell someone you’ve just met what it is you do, they’re more likely to remember it—and keep you top of mind the next time they need a designer/developer/writer/etc.—than if you spend 5 or 6 minutes fumbling around, trying to explain your business.

Nicheing out isn’t easy—but here’s how to get started.

Why do you think copywriters charge a bundle to help a company write a tagline? The tagline may be only a handful of words—but those words are so telling, so important, that it takes crafting, honing, splicing & dicing to get just the right tagline. Your niche statement will take a little bit of thought, too. On the start-up and marketing blog A Smart Bear, there’s a series of 10 questions start-ups should ask themselves monthly (and, honestly, most of these are questions you should consider asking yourself as a freelancer or independent, too). Go check out questions #1 and #2.  I think they’ll really help you create your niche statement.

And it will behoove you to think about this…because there will soon be a wall in Cohere that will feature your photo, name and niche statement. (Sounds awesome, right? It will be!) This wall will offer another way for you to get to know your coworkers. And, perhaps, get new business.

Stay tuned to the blog on Wednesday for more about niche statements. And in the mean time, share in the comments section what your niche statement is. Not sure yet? Share what your struggle is in developing it. Who knows–other Cohere members just might be able to help you!

  • Bethbot52

    Not sure if this is a tagline or niche statement, but here’s what I’ve been using: Providing online content and community management services for businesses that want to have a positive impact on our world. Too vague? Lemme know.

    • Beth-neat! I would say that the only part that might be missing is to be real clear that you’re a writer. People tend to need to be told straight up what you do. Add that in and you’ll be in good shape!

    • That’s awesome, Beth. I dig Angel’s suggestion. Perhaps the “providing online content” portion can be shifted to say that you provide writing and community management services….

      I know EXACTLY what you’re trying to say here. But Angel is right – people need to be spoon-fed. :D (Believe me, I’m SO struggling with this right now!) :)

      • Oh man. I really like Beth’s tagline. I promise (mostly) not to steal it. :)

        It’s weird to have to use language that is at once accessible by people who don’t know industry lingo yet still remains buzzwordy enough for industry contacts.

        • Hi Tim,
          We should know each other. Esp. if the gater is a common connection here! What’s your niche statement?

          • I’ve been meaning to get on this for months. THAT’S my niche statement! ;)

            Let’s see. If I had to squiggle one up at this exact moment, I’d say:

            “I story-ize and humanize the best research and data from the social sector and create focused strategic planning around those nebulous goals that you can’t quite describe on paper.”

            Upon reading this back, it could also be expressed as: “Blah blah blah deedle dee clearly Tim needs to spend more time figuring out what he does and what he wants to get paid to do.”

            I did accompany La Cocodrila up to Cohere back in October to witness the glory. I bumped my head in the Treehouse. Wheeeeeeeee!

            • Tim-
              A. I’m upset that I don’t remember your visit. Maybe I wasn’t here. Yes…we’ll say that as an out for me!
              B. How’s this for a niche statement “I solve social problems through story telling” The best niche statements get people to say, “how?” Then you get to launch into the specifics.

            • Tim and Mark William Mann came up to visit Cohere! It was jawesome.

              Tim– I know we’re due a Skype call/lunch to talk about all this goodness, but I love the path you’re headed down. I TOTES dig Angel’s paring-down of what you said. Seems like you have an amazing start, homeslizzle!

            • @caligater Word up. :) Let’s chat soon. I’m off to Boston Friday-Tuesday for @State_Formation but then we’ll have a roundabout. When next you become a part of Boulder?

              Angel – Your name is remarkably descriptive. ;) No worries on not meeting me. You were in fact gone that day. I agree with Cali – your distillation is delicious. I’m a storytelling freak. This one time, when I graduated college the first time, my mom got me a shirt that read “I MAKE STUFF UP.” I love you, Mom.

              The only language that sticks in my maw is “solve”, since I very often do more to help other people solve social problems. But perhaps that still counts. I’ll think more on this and return to y’all up at Cohere soon…quite soon…muhuhahhauahaha…

            • I love that the comment section of my blog is now a social coordination hub. Very exciting. Anyways, warn me when you’re going to come up here so I can clear my schedule to hang out!

  • Why Niche and How to Get Started #coworking http://bit.ly/ej8S58

  • RT @CohereLLC: Why You Need A Niche Statement and How to Get Started http://bit.ly/ej8S58 #coworking

  • RT @GoneCoworking: RT @CohereLLC: Why You Need A Niche Statement and How to Get Started http://bit.ly/ej8S58 #coworking

  • Okay, your quoting of my tagline in the last niche blog post makes me realize how horrendous my niche statement is! LOL :: “I do web messaging and branding for small businesses.” So. Freakin. Lame. I am just smitten with another Cohere member’s tagline: Michelle Venus’s “Marketing for companies on the verge of something big.”

    I love how “on the verge of something big” has a lot of character and is interesting — but leaves it broad enough to work with different kinds of companies and industries. I’m trying to craft something along those lines. :)

    • Cali-Michelle’s tagline does rock my intellectual world. I can’t wait to see what you come up with for your spiced up version!

  • TheMayor

    I’ve also heard this described as an elevator speech… how would you describe your company in just a couple sentences on an elevator and make it memorable? I took a Make it Fly course in Denver and developing an “elevator speech” was a big part of the class. Here’s mine:
    “My name is Heidi. I’m the Mayor of HeidiTown.com, a blog about events, festivals and road trips around Colorado. HeidiTown is not a calendar of event, but rather stuff the Mayor likes and I like unique small town festivals like Left-Hander days in Niwot.”

    • Heidi-I actually heard you say that exact thing the other day when we were somewhere together. I totally understood what you did when you said that!

      • The Mayor

        Yep, I said it on the radio with you. :-)

    • I feel like I’ve always been able to easily think about/describe who you are (as the Mayor) and what you do, Heidi. I think your elevator pitch is great. It’s especially good because you say what you are NOT–which, in some cases, is necessary and highly effective. Dig it.

  • If frickin’ The Situation can niche-out, so can you! – @CohereLLC http://bit.ly/ej8S58 via @caligater #personal #branding

  • RT @CohereLLC: Why Niche and How to Get Started #coworking http://bit.ly/ej8S58

  • @patdryburgh @mattChevy @jmarkow @MouyyadA Do u all have niche statements as biz owners/freelancers? I'm struggling: http://bit.ly/ej8S58

  • @thevar @yosoykia @suzanbond @markwmann @eleanorwragg Would love your thoughts as independents. Do you have niches? http://bit.ly/ej8S58

  • Pingback: 3 Ways To Zero In On What You Do Best | Cohere Coworking Community()

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