Picking Your Beauty Niche: Start Your Brand With a Distinct Voice & Build Your Audience of Raving Fans.
Why You Should Care About Picking a Niche
Most people get seduced by the trap of trying to create a brand that caters to everyone.
Sometimes they may even sort of pick a niche — like say black natural hair — then start thinking —”But I don’t want to miss out on that Type 2 (straight to wavy) hair money.” So then they expand their line to include all hair types.
Don’t do this! This is the wrong move. This does not establish credibility with your core base. If anything, it dilutes your brand and squelches virality. If I see too many women with waves and loose ringlets in your outreach materials, I am going to doubt that your product will get the job done on my very coily African tresses.
Instead, you should double down and be very specific about a singular hair or skin type that you are catering to.
Perhaps you only want to service kinky, coily, African type hair — because you have that hair type, or your kids have that hair type — or you live in a place surrounded by people with that hair type.
Let’s face it — even though this hair type is the most common amongst black naturals, it is the least catered to. People somehow think that if that they don’t focus on or include looser textures, they will not make that money, when truthfully, the reverse is more true.
So in this article — to help you narrow down your niche, I will give you the 3 main reasons why a niche is important.
Most people don’t understand why and how the money is in the niches, and die on the hill of trying to be everything to everybody.
In the next articles I publish in this collection, I will break down 3 brand examples with very defined niches in order to make the process even more concrete, as well as how to choose and understand your niche.
However, in order for that to even matter to you, understanding why having a niche is the game changer you’ve been looking for, is pivotal.
Why Do Niches and Micro-niches Matter?
It Just Makes Financial Sense
Here is the truth that both you and I know very well. With black hair — there are no two textures that are exactly alike.
With skin types — there are a few different skin types but the needs of teenage, breakout prone, oily skin are vastly different from those of the experienced skin of a 70 year old living in a dry climate.
Let’s not even get into color cosmetics. Whether you are African American, Caribbean or living on the Continent.
So what does this imply?
It means that there is no one product that is a cure-all for every single situation — not even coconut oil .
The need for water is the only common thread between all these micro-niches.
So the next obvious thing is that if one product does not work for everyone, it follows that the broader your target range, the more products you will need to truly make everyone happy and the more money you will have to fork out when you are just starting out.
Ingredients and bases go down in price with each jump you make in quantity purchased.
For example — 4 ounces of an oil could cost $1 per ounce. 1 gallon of that same oil could cost as little as 30 cents per ounce including shipping.
That is a huge difference in buying power and profit margin. The narrower your niche, the narrower your ingredient range, and the more spending and thus profiting power you posses.
Also, in this brand new world of internet marketing — whether it be free, content driven strategies — or paid micro-targeting strategies, the narrower your audience, the more unified your voice.
You no longer have to create 5 different ads you can just create 1 or 2 and really hit a very narrow market.
This means you can spend the same amount on your advertising but vastly increase your ROI. Get more bang out of your ad bucks.
There is a place for expanding your line. I strongly prefer that people just start new separate lines (even if it is under their same name) because they are building a whole new audience.
However that line expansion place is for way down the road, when you are established in one niche, are killing it there, and have then built the resources and the reputation to safely sail to a new shore.
Conserve your resources of time, money and energy by niching down when you are first out of the gate.
2. You Become The Go-To Solution For Your Niche’s Main Problems.
When you are trying to please everyone it is really hard to make something outstanding.
If you are going to be the go to person to address rosacea facial skincare solutions in humid climates — there will be thousands of women who will raise their hands for that.
There will always be some people who find your product, who love it, who are not in your target market.
However, the key is to let them find you — by word of mouth of your raving fans, or as your brand grows and becomes “the one to watch” in the industry.
Speaking directly to your people, and only to your people, gives you mad respect and makes you top of mind to the people who will consistently buy from you and recommend you. You want to shoot for being the first brand that folks think of, when the niche problems you solve come up for discussion in the barbershop, between moms on the playground, or during a Girls Night Out.
If you dilute your branding too early on by trying to speak to everyone, it can actually be a turn off. Your ideal client (35 year old single, professional African-American woman) may not be able to relate to something that you present as suitable to use on children or on men’s beards. Just pick one demographic and talk only to that group of people.
3. You Cut Down on Overwhelm Thus Preventing Analysis Paralysis
The world is moving very fast. Things are changing so much within our industry; within tech driven marketplaces and all of this is affecting how we communicate with our customers, which translates to our ability to drive sales.
If you have a very narrow niche, and you know your customer inside and out: What drives her, where he hangs out, what she struggles with, and what he is willing to pay money (preferably to you) to solve, it makes keeping up with these changes so much easier.
If you start with one customer profile, and one social media platform to reach her on — then you are off to the races. Even at a slow, organic pace of growth, you will develop very loyal customers.
I suggest you start with the platform that you use the most for your personal life, because you already understand the culture of that platform and the context in which you receive ads, how you receive and share free content, and what inspires you to buy or click on promotions.
What kind of mood are you in when you are scrolling through Facebook or Instagram?
Are you using YouTube or Pinterest as a search engine to solve problems, or are you going there purely for entertainment? Perhaps it is a little of both.
Whatever the reason, it is easier to start to understand the culture of a platform if you are there hanging out for your own personal reasons before you jump on there for business.
With that understanding of the context, and with your ideal customer profile in place, it becomes much easier to create connections, free content and even sponsored content that feels useful.
Your ideal buyer is intrigued, and even relieved to take the next step towards conversion, by joining your list, or consuming free content several more times before completing the sale.
Your presence does not feel like an intrusion on their marathon watching of cat videos or twist out tutorials.
What I described above is very hard to do for even 4 different customer avatars, just out the gate. This is something to build towards not start with. That is why you should start with just one ideal customer in mind.
If you spread yourself to thin right out of the gate, the choices and possibilities and things to keep your eye on multiply so rapidly, that you can easily become so overwhelmed that you start overthinking.
Overthinking usually leads to inaction and then straight giving up. Honestly, the idea of that certainly overwhelms me, so who could blame you?
Start with one ideal customer profile. Understand his or her needs and speak only to that individual in a singular voice in all your marketing materials and free content.
It makes everything easier, more streamlined, more profitable and enjoyable for both you and your customer.
In the next article I will give you some pointers on how to pick a niche, and will even share how I picked mine for both my product line as well as my teaching/ consulting business.