Your partners are very unlikely to hand you your first clients on a plate (unless you are lucky enough to be inheriting a partner’s portfolio). After all, they (your partners) probably have their drawings and share of the firm’s profits directly linked to the size of the client portfolio. This means that you can not ‘hang onto their coat-tails’ and aim to be a replica of them. You will need your own technical specialism and niche. I.e. aim to become the Go-To-Expert for a niche, both to attract internal referrals from partners in your firm, and also attract new client enquiries that come to you.
See here for other benefits to committing to a niche.
In this two part blog post I will take you through the 5 steps you need to do to find your niche.
Yesterday, we took the first two steps in the journey to find your niche. Today I will talk about the next three steps. If you worked through the first two steps in the process you will already have your list of at least ten possible niches that you could adopt in your work.
3. Assess each one against some key criteria, for example:
- Does working within this niche excite you?
- Is there a big enough marketplace for you to build a profitable client portfolio?
- Do you already have credibility working with this particular audience?
- Do you have existing good relationships with people well connected to this marketplace?
- Does your firm want to develop its client base within this niche?
- Do you like, and can relate, to the people who work within this niche?
- Is the demand for your services from this niche growing?
- Do existing advisors currently poorly serve this niche?
- Any niche which gets at least five ticks is potentially a good fit for you.
4. Take your top five ranked potential niches. Now apply the ‘is there enough of a marketplace motivated to buy my service and products’ test? The ones that pass with flying colours need to be prioritised
5. With your top three ranked potential niches, which one excites you the most? This is likely to be the best niche for you to adopt.
If you can’t decide between some of the potential niches you have identified then think about in which of your niches you have:
- the most credibility;
- the most engaged and largest network;
- The most potential for strategic alliances already available to you;
- the most number of current or ex-clients; and
- the most amount of excitement when you think about specialising in this area.
You may find our FREE choosing your niche worksheet helpful (email required).
Remember that adopting a niche helps you acquire new clients. It is not your decision to commit to a niche but the quality of the service that you deliver to your clients that will determine whether you keep them.
How did you decide on your niche?
Written by Heather Townsend. I help professionals become the ‘Go To Expert’. I am the co-author of ‘How to make partner and still have a life‘ and the author of the award-winning and bestselling book on Networking, ‘The FT Guide To Business Networking‘.
To find out whether I can help you, have a look at “our services”