Specialization or: How narrow does my niche have to be?

by , published December 14, 2021
How far do you have to go, to make sure, your offer is specialised enough?

A marketing principle says: You need a niche to attract enough clients.

Otherwise, you will fail.

This applies in particular to consulting and coaching.

And it is true, specialization is essential. Many business owners answer the question about their target clients with ALL.

Sometimes followed by: Who needs it.

This categorization is no help because theoretically, ALL can use advice. At least at some point in their life.

The other extreme is a tiny target group.

If a personal Tai-Chi trainer focuses on 38 to 48-year-old wealthy women living in divorce and based in Cologne-Bonn, Germany, she may see the niche topic as too narrow.

What does specialization mean, and how narrow does my niche have to be?

A definition for a niche is An excerpt from the overall market.

Wikipedia adds:

… whose profile of needs has not yet been met by current competitors (market gap or manifest niche, baseline niche, pre-competitive niche), or insufficiently (supply gap or latent niche, actual/real niche, post-competitive niche).

Before this explanation brings tears to your eyes.

The basic idea of this definition is:

The more a provider specializes, the easier it will find potential clients.

If no one has the target group of 38 to 48-year-olds, wealthy women living in divorce and based in Cologne-Bonn, you are on the best way to open a lucrative coaching business.

Possibly. But not necessarily.

Specialization doesn’t automatically bring clients – but it helps.

Imagine offering a yoga course in Manhatten for high-heel fanatics with painful feet. You will have lots of eager customers.

Suppose you invest in a trendy location with handsome trainers AND do great upselling. I talk about foot reflexology, foot cosmetics, foot care, shiatsu – this niche may have a golden future.


But even the most fabulous idea is not automatically successful everywhere and for everyone.

Whether a Heart Attack grill selling triple bypass-burgers is thriving in a suburb of Heidelberg remains to be seen. Nevertheless, it is a successful niche:

Massive portions for people who have no problem with the idea each bite could be the last.


Could you get more specialised with your niche?

The most narrow a niche can get.

The Heart Attack Grill is an exceptional niche – and extraordinarily successful. Click to start the trailer of the bizarre restaurant.


It is like modern art. The gigantic blocks of fat of Joseph Beuys in the Hamburg Museum in Berlin are unique. And unaffordable.

However, if you build something fat, it does not mean you become famous. Many factors determine whether someone takes credit for fat blocks. (One of them may be that the name should be Beuys.)

In many cases, narrowing the niche can help to attract more clients.

Before you do that, you should ask yourself three questions.

Question number 1: What should the specialization do for you?

A niche affects two factors:

It shows potential target clients that you are the right provider for them. And it is more about the perception a client has of themselves than your perception of your clients.

A client thinks: I am in a particular situation. Or: Someone like me. Or: Someone who has similar experiences or life situations.

A client wants to get the feeling of being right with you. And he decides because of how he thinks, HOW you are and work.

Less WHAT your niche is.

Just think of your reason for reading here.

You like your work, are well trained, have work experience, and know that you need to invest money and time to achieve your goals.

And you see no contradiction in the fact that the work you like pays off in cash.

This is why you do not read marketing tips for mid-sized companies.

This would be more for the company Website Optimization and Co., which has ten employees and is looking for new business premises because the managing director wants to expand.

If you are a consultant, coach, or trainer, your niche is about the people you want to work for.

The second factor of a niche is about a problem you want to solve.

Our website TelefonArt is about the question: How do I win clients on the phone?

In the foreground is the problem. It is a relatively narrow niche that we target.

Question number 2: What do you sell?

If your answer was: I sell coaching, I must disappoint you. Reluctantly. Nevertheless.

Coaching clients do not want to coach. No? No.

Nobody wants coaching, training, counseling. On the contrary, in addition to his work, household, children have the time to make further commitments because of a vague hope – yes, what?

And now we are getting closer to the triangle of Specialisation-Narrow-Niche.

Because coaching clients want what coaching will give them.

The 38- to 48-year-old wealthy woman, who is currently living in divorce and based in the Cologne-Bonn area, can have different problems for which he is looking for a solution:

She is looking for a coach to help her bring her children through an unpleasant divorce.

  • To live his life alone again after 20 years of marriage.
  • He has to date again soon (this is where our fitness trainer comes back into play).

These are concrete topics.

It is not just the desire for help. It is the desire for someone who has a superpower in this subject area if you like.

And it is why clients want to pay a coach, why the description of your special abilities should be straightforward to understand.

People pay for a specific type of help or support. This is your niche.

Question number 3: What can happen at worst if my niche is too big?

In the worst-case scenario, you end up finding too few clients. Be it because there are not enough clients. Or because no one feels approached.

Because if you address everyone, it dilutes your marketing message.

If you have many talents, you should provide the individual offers proof of your performance.

That is the depth with which you deal with problems.

Or references.

Or that you give answers to the questions that go through the mind of your target clients.


How strongly you want to specialize in a niche depends on many factors. For example, which goals you have with your company. Or how much revenue you wish to generate.

But the more individual you approach clients, the more buyers you will win. And this is what you achieve when you specialize in one (or more) client groups.

Let me know in the comments: What is your biggest headache when it comes to the triangle of Specialisation-Narrow-Niche?



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Andrea Lekies

Andrea Lekies

Andrea Lekies writes here and on her other website passion-profit.com (which is German and exists like ... forever). Why now an English website about entrepreneurs who have ADHD? What else could one do in her free time ;)

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