More often than not, consumers will find themselves rolling their eyes and taking a big sigh at the latest and greatest infomercials about the new must-have gadget of the season.
It can be difficult to imagine the ideal product for the masses and many times, creating the ideal gadget is nearly impossible so predicting the gadget of the season is up in the air. Rather than trying to create demand, consider filling demand by taking the time to conduct research and fill a niche area.
There is nothing more stressful than coming up with a new product only to discover that it has only been invented before, but marketed so poorly that you had simply never heard of it.
While many great products were created this way in the past, our current foundation for spreading the word on a new product is so great that it’s difficult to be the best in any given field due to an array of constant competition. Instead, consider finding a market that already exists and creating a product to develop specifically for that demographic to purchase.
Consider finding a niche that interests you. For example, a male college athlete may be able to recommend the best workout gear for others in his demographic but probably knows little about what stay-at-home-moms need for the daily routines, despite his idea for a new baby sling.
The main reason to consider staying in your demographic would be that you would know what questions to ask and which problems to initially avoid. Consider sticking to the habits of your target market, at least in the beginning of starting a business or when coming up with a new product.
Consider the Extremes
Think back on some of the most elaborate, yet specific businesses listed online or in a favorite magazine. Photo Finish Frames, created by a marathon runner, initially launched as a framing business but quickly moved to specialized frames for runners.
Basically, the owner developed a system to ship a specific size frame to a marathon runner in order to frame an image of the runner along with their racing number and finishing time.
No Film School is another example of a specific niche. Websites like this one send to-the-point, weekly emails. No Film School’s emails show up as a list of twenty articles for the week.
Among these articles, each one is designed for aspiring filmmakers who are interested in the inner workings of script, camera, lighting, production and all the other areas that result in creating independent films outside of Hollywood.
This niche simply invites the idea of everyday film education without paying the staggering debts of tuition.
Finding Your Niche
Marathon running and independent filmmaking do not interest everyone, which is what makes these two companies so successful within their field.
Rather than continue to dream of creating a business that already exists, consider examining the social groups that you are already belong to in order to create a new business that you would be excited to be a part of, as either an owner or a member.
Start by taking a creating viewpoint at your current resume, social media page, hobbies, work experience, and daily physical habits. Think about all of the groups you have ever been a part of and consider joining new groups that interest you for further inspiration.
This may involve actual groups or even magazine subscriptions or websites that you often read. Then, consider other individuals like yourself and think of what you enjoy, why you enjoy it, and consider others who may value similar items.
After creating a detailed list of fields that interest you, narrow these down to two specific fields that most interest you. Sometimes, a product may overlap into both categories, but it’s best to start with two in order to brainstorm a wider range of results.
Once you have chosen two categories, conduct additional research. Begin by searching online for websites that focus on specific categories or visit a local bookstore to find out more information on a particular field of interest.
While it’s not important to choose a category for the wealthy, such as golf, it is important to choose a category of those who purchase goods within a field, such as runners or photographers who buy shoes and equipment.
Once you have chosen two specific markets, begin brainstorming ideas of products that currently do not exist, or have been marketed poorly.
Consider coming up with problems that exist and quick ways to solve these problems with a simple product. In terms of simple, think how revolutionary, yet essential, the windshield wiper was for the first vehicle.
Perhaps even before the initial product has been created, think of the benefit to be had or problem that the product is trying to fix. Much like finding the proper tagline for a movie, the product must be well explained in a single sentence, so there is absolutely no complication of the potential customers not understanding the benefit of the product.
Consider the initial release of the Apple iPod. Rather than list the gigabytes or any of that other technological jargon that confuses many consumers, the company simply delivered “1,000 songs in your pocket.”
Long Tail Keywords
After coming up with a successful product or service, a sales site can then focus on the long tail keywords. While the phrase originates from statistics, the concept remains quite simple.
The term applies to retail when considering sales of a large number of unique items or when delivering a large number of individual web searches. Meaning, it can be difficult for a new company to show up in the top results on a Google page, but when searches are more specific, it’s easier to place higher among the results.
In order to better understand the long tail, consider the example of real estate. When choosing SEO words like “real estate,” there is a great deal of competition fighting for top results.
However, when using phrases like “Winston Salem North Carolina Real Estate townhouse,” results are much more specific. These types of businesses are ignoring the vast, general terms and focusing on the specifics.
The long tail allows for businesses to ignore the responsibility of supplying popular items to the masses by focusing on difficult-to-find items for niche consumers.
The total sale of the large number of unique items can help companies compete with more well known companies who sell bulk popular items. Consider the bulk book sales from Amazon or the bulk movie rentals, song downloads or book downloads from Apple, two of the more known long tail retailers.