Find Your Niche

I think we are all sick of everyone talking about how oversaturated the market is.  In our current landscape brands can be launched with very little investment and the pot of consumers are being spread entirely too thin.  You can either give up or you can narrow your focus to a niche that has potential.

There are a few keys to making a run in this market

  1. Identify with your consumer with your branding and content.
  2. Create innovative products that solve a problem that no one else is solving.
  3. Find your audience first, then create your product.

Identify With Your Customer

I recently spoke with some very large brands that felt like things were a bit stagnant and they were losing sales to much smaller companies. They were in the midst of developing new products but weren’t sure what to do in the meantime. It was clear that the best thing they could do is start producing some high level, educational, entertaining and motivational content.  Not only with this help serve their short-term goals but it will also benefit them immensely when their new products come out. 

Create Innovative Products

Brainstorming problems of your current customer and developing solutions is the way innovation is done.  Nowadays it seems that brands only wait for new ingredients to come out before they launch new products. By this time, every brand has the same solution available. Be trend setters and get to these ideas before the ingredient manufacturers do.

Find Your Audience First

For start up brands or launching new product innovation, it’s critical to know your audience in advance. This will fast track any launch strategies by knowing what content to produce, where to distribute it and how to get customers involved early or on a presale.  If you don’t have access to a specific audience, you may want to attempt to build your database first to see if your innovation makes sense for who you can reach. 

Sales Funnel 101

Sales funnels are all the rage.  We have brand owners and CEOs asking us about eCommerce sales funnels not knowing what they are or how they work, but they know it’s something that is crucial to their direct to consumer success…..and they’re right.  

Identify the Audience

Everyone seems to understand the funnel concept.  The top having a large number of potential customers, many of which won’t buy our product and the bottom of the funnel being the closest to our exact customer ready to purchase.

The key with funnels is producing the most appropriate message or offer for each group to lead them down the path to purchase.

Top of the Funnel

For us the Top of the Funnel is an ongoing discovery process.  We produce low barrier content like an educational video, an entertaining video or a blog post.  From there we can determine how many people engage with the content. We are to assume that people engaging with the content are more likely to be a customer than those that don’t engage.  We capture the data from each content piece as to which worked best and we keep testing.

Middle of the Funnel

Middle of the Funnel people have either already engaged in our content or we have a high level of confidence in their demographics that we serve content that requires some kind of committing step.  For instance, offering a free download in exchange for an email address is good for a middle of the funnel group. Again, we are to assume that if they are willing to give us an email address that they are more closely related to a person that would actually buy our product.

Bottom of the Funnel

Someone at the bottom of the funnel is someone that is ready to buy.  Anyone that has engaged in the top or middle of the funnel can be put into this group, but we also lump abandon cart people into this group.  With this audience we serve a strong call to action like a promotion or free shipping offer that motivates them to act.

Lastly, it is crucial to work backwards with your audiences.  People that make it through the funnel need to be leveraged in look-alike audiences to refine each part of your sales funnel.  If this refinement is done properly and enough times, your funnels will run smoothly. By no means does this have a “set it and forget it” type scalability, however, by constant refinement and testing you can have a very powerful sales engine.