In this episode, we speak with Karen Reyburn, owner of The Profitable Firm, a creative agency for accountants. She talks about the importance of finding a niche, the keys to picking a great niche, and dispels some common myths about niches.
Karen has been running her agency for six years, and has always worked exclusively with accountants, helping them with social media, content marketing, and websites. She explains that finding a niche is more important than ever in today’s world, because of the oversaturation of content.
What is a Niche?
But there tends to be a lot of misunderstanding around what a niche actually is. Karen says that it doesn’t necessarily represent an industry, although picking a specific industry does make it easier. She defines a niche as more of a targeted focus area that you can define so clearly that your audience instantly realizes that it’s for them.
Karen gives some examples of niches, and emphasizes the importance of being as specific as possible when defining one. She talks about how to discover your ideal buyer and put yourself in their shoes, in order to uncover their specific activities, habits, and goals.
Next, she goes more into her background, sharing the story of how she started working as an accountant in the US, then moved to Scotland. She explains how she decided to start her agency after realizing that there weren’t any agencies that did creative and marketing work for accountants.
Exploring The Creative Side
Karen talks about how she gradually discovered her two main skills (creativity and accounting), and what inspired her to start exploring her creative side more. Although she also had a wedding photography business at the time, ultimately, she decided to let that go to focus solely on her agency.
When evaluating a potential niche, Karen advises listeners to notice their default, what they keep coming back to. She poses some great questions that people can ask themselves to determine their niche. But she cautions that it’s not enough to enjoy something and be good at it; you also have to be able to make a profit from it.
Since competition is so high in today’s world, Karen emphasizes the importance of bringing your humanity and personality into your brand in order to stand out. Personality is what inspires people to decide to work with you. She explains how some people find their niche gradually over time, but learning about common terminology and problems.
Although people often fear going into too narrow of a niche and cutting off opportunities, Karen argues that you can’t work with every person in the world. One of the main purposes of marketing is to actually turn people away, including those who are a bad fit and who you wouldn’t want to work with.
Never Too Small
Karen discusses why a niche is rarely ever too small or exclusive. In her experience, most people usually err on the side of being too broad, although it’s okay to start broad and then narrow your focus as you gain experience. She offers advice on how to find your niche, and notes that you might have to experiment at first to figure out what your audience is most likely to consume.
Finally, we ask Karen what works well for her clients in terms of content. It’s often not one thing, but a combination and integration of efforts. In order to get an ROI from content marketing, she recommends finding a combination of factors that relate to what you do well and what your niche needs, as well as how they consume content.
Karen also shares a couple of her favorite accountant podcasts, including Ashton McGill’s Never Settle Podcast and From the Trenches with Paul Meissner and David Boyar.
On this episode you'll learn:
- What is a niche, exactly? And why it's not just an industry
- How to find your own niche, and be an audience magnet
- Can you go too small with a niche?