Those of you who have been with me a long time know that one of my top priorities for you as a Speaker is that you determine your niche early on in your speaking career. It is the key to speaking success. Without a well-defined niche you’re basically throwing spaghetti at the wall and waiting for something to stick.
You’ll also remember that I not only tell you to niche yourself, but I also say niche yourself even more specifically. The tightly niched expert is a successful one due to the standout effect. One of my favorite metaphors is the purple cow in the field. That’s who I want you to be in your field of expertise. Standout. Unique. Intriguing. You have to be the go-to expert in your area to build recognition and reputation.
What does the time we’re living in now mean for the public speaker in terms of niche?
First, niche doesn’t mean target market or demographic, although it is related. It’s more finely focused than that. It’s about your message, the heart of it, and who your ideal audience is. For example, you could say you’re a Healthcare Industry Speaker, but that is immensely broad. Being broadly defined equals getting passed over for gigs. You could niche down to Dentists, but that, too, is still very broad. What I am getting at is that your niche might be something like this:
Female dentists who want to build their own practices so they can be successful enough to travel and offer free dental care to impoverished people.
That is a tightly defined niche. It’s also a powerful one.
So, using the above niche as an example, how might it need to be redefined in the light of COVID-19? A simple change is that you would study and research best practices for dentists during the pandemic. You’re becoming an expert in this new area that your already defined niche audience is keenly interested in. You would then incorporate these new insights into your presentations or develop a sub-niche around the topic. It’s not necessary that you start from square one, although these times can make even the seasoned speaker feel like she needs to give up and go back to the grind. Don’t give up! And don’t lose heart. And don’t throw out all of the connections, progress and momentum you’ve gathered over the months or years in your speaking career.
You are simply looking at answering this question: How are those that I already serve impacted by COVID-19 and how can I help them find the answers they need to thrive?
When you find these answers, you’ve found your sub-niche. You’ve found your relevance in these most unprecedented times. You’ve found a way to do your part to make a difference for others and isn’t that why you want to be a public speaker in the first place?
If you’re looking for even more helpful ways to get noticed and grow your speaking business, then be sure to check out our Facebook group “Grow Your Speaking Business” for more useful tips.