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Episode 94: Why Niching Down Is A Lie (& What To Do Instead)

Episode 94: Why Niching Down Is A Lie (& What To Do Instead)

Welcome to today’s episode of The Born To Rise Podcast, I’m your host, Cait Scudder. And I am so excited you guys to talk with you today about why niching down is a lie and what to do instead.  If you guys have been hanging out with me for a while here, you know that I love talking about niching. It’s one of the core areas of expertise that I am known for as a business coach. 

Let’s be real, it’s something that all online entrepreneurs, whether you are a coach of some description, you’re a consultant, or you run a done for you business, it is so important to have a niche, to have a domain that you play in, that you can become known for so that you can book out your services and have that enviable waitlist wrapped around the parking lot. It’s so so important. 

Yet, one of the biggest gaps that I see in the conversation around niching is that we tend to think about niching from this place of needing to narrow ourselves down needing to cut out a lot of the noise needing to chisel away our area of expertise until we hang out in only one domain. And the thing is, guys, for a lot of people, that works. For a lot of businesses and a lot of business models, the idea that we need to narrow is actually effective and fruitful in moving closer towards the goal of a fully booked out business or really profitable business etc. 

Know Who You’re Speaking To

However, there is also something really detrimental to this language into this verbiage, that narrowing is the way to niche. So inside of this episode, I am going to be talking about why I think this concept of narrowing down to niche is a lie. And what I recommend that we do instead as entrepreneurs. So as always, if you are listening to this episode, and you are by any chance at your desk, I would recommend taking some notes, if not maybe just voice notes in your phone. So you can come back and take some of these golden nuggets away. 

So first things first, I hear myself saying this to my clients all of the freaking time. If you are talking to everybody you are talking to nobody. So let’s talk about in the first instance, where niching quote unquote, down is actually relevant and important. Okay. We need to know when we are marketing, speaking, running a business who it is that we are speaking to, if you don’t know whose problem you’re addressing, who you’re speaking to, in your language in your verbiage in your storytelling in your content, it’s going to feel very, very difficult for anybody reading it to resonate past the level of Oh, that’s interesting, or Oh, hey, cool photo or man, Cait writes in a nice way, right? 

That’s fine, but I’m not looking for fine. We’re not as marketers, as change makers, as visionaries. as entrepreneurs, we’re not looking to elicit a response of Oh, that’s interesting, or Oh, that’s fine. We’re looking to elicit the response of Holy smokes that was seriously valuable content. Where do I go to take the next step? How do I get closer in this person’s universe? What’s my direct call to action to move forward in working with this person? That is what we are going for. So in the sense that we need to be specific in who we’re speaking to. That is absolutely correct. When it comes to niching, however, this concept of needing to niche down and needing to get very narrow in our scope of focus is in and of itself, just straight up not true. I say this to my clients all the time, you do not need to get narrower, you need to get bigger.

Niching Mistake Number One

One of the biggest mistakes I see for entrepreneurs who are in the space of trying to clarify or narrow or hone in on their niche is that they feel like they have to cut aspects of their personality out, they need to weed out parts of interest that they have, they need to weed out elements of their story. 

I see this a lot in the life coaching space. So let’s say that somebody has a yoga teaching background, but also perhaps a corporate background, also some other skill set that they’re trying to incorporate into a mindset coaching practice or an empowerment coaching practice. I see this a lot with women who play in that space, holistic wellness, mindset coaching, life coaching, even business coaching, right? We feel like we have to pick one thing we feel like we have to just be one thing. 

I say this to my clients and my students inside of Nail Your Niche all of the freaking time that we need to be crystal clear with our people about the problems that we solve. The people who have the problems that you help solve. Guess what you guys? They are just like you like you. They are multifaceted, multi-dimensional beings who, yes, have a specific problem in one specific area, and they’re looking to hire expert help in that one specific area.

They are not just entrepreneurs looking for a business coach or physical people looking for a health coach to lose weight. They also have other aspects other elements to their personality, which impact their buying behavior and their psychological disposition around choosing a mentor coach service provider in order to move forward with. Therefore, if you are spending your time trying to quote-unquote, niche down by stripping your marketing, your messaging, your essence of all of the elements that make your business unique and make your business you, you’re robbing yourself of the ability to connect and magnetize clients, but you’re also robbing your prospective clients’ opportunity to get to know you on a layer deeper than just Hey, buy my shit, right. And that, as we all know, doesn’t actually work. It doesn’t create community, it doesn’t build relationships, it doesn’t do any of the things that long term sales actually come from. 

You Don’t Need To Get Narrower – You Need To Get Bigger!

So let’s go back to this concept of you don’t need to get narrower, you need to get bigger. What I really want to encourage you to do if you are an online business owner, is to ask yourself, How can I get bigger and more commanding in my message? How can I unapologetically own all of the components of myself that make me and that make me unique in the field that I am playing in.

So inside of Nail Your Niche, one of my signature programs, which by the way, guys, we are currently waitlisting for if you are interested in getting your butt inside of this program, head to the link in the show notes. That is going to give you a link to hop on the waitlist. It’s the only way. If you were even considering joining us for this round of Nail Your Niche, the only way to get $500 off of this program is through signing up on the waitlist you can get on that in the link in my Instagram bio right now or in the link in the show notes. 

Point Of Difference

But let’s go back to this inside of Nail Your Niche. We do an entire module on this very concept. It’s called point of difference. So when I say you don’t need to get narrower, you need to get bigger. What I mean is that we need to get bigger in our messaging and in our ownership of what it is that makes us different in the field that we’re in. So you’re an empowerment coach great. What makes how you do this thing different from anybody else? 

For a lot of people, that’s not stripping yourself of your yoga coaching background and your experience in corporate and your time in the Peace Corps or any other components to your brand story or your personality or your skillset. A lot of business coaches teach, just speak to the problem, just speak to the thing that you know the pain that your people have, just speak to, you know what’s holding them back and holding them down. And don’t confuse them with other elements. 

What Actually Defines Your Niche

I say the thing that actually defines your niche is you and if you try to extrapolate and pull apart your story, your essence the things that actually make you – the stripes to your tiger, like that is going to drastically minimize your potential for really connecting with people and really magnetizing an audience. Your people want to know those things about you. They want to read that in your content. They want to feel and develop and cultivate a sense of connection. And it’s only by you being willing to be big enough and own those components to your story, those components to your skillset that we get to know Oh hey, Cait’s a business coach, but her niche like she is doing this in a way that nobody else is. 

I’ll use myself in my business as a case study, right? I talk a lot about niching. I talk a lot about heart-centered, compassionate sales, I talk a lot about scaling, I have the zone of genius, I have these areas that I have become very well known for in this industry. Right? I don’t have to just pick one of them. The thing that actually sets me apart, the thing that makes me different is the very hands-on high-touch approach to coaching. I am very unapologetically in your face. You know, I am going to be a little bit controversial and stand for what I believe in and show you what is possible. And I am also very unapologetic and fearless in talking about the fact that energy and strategy are not too polarizing. Opposite sides of the spectrum here. They’re both components to making sustainable sales possible. And both components that we need in order to grow a business right. This is my niche. This is my jam. 

As you can see, I’m not just talking about one problem. I help business owners who are just getting clear on how to use languaging and marketing and messaging to attract their first clients and I help multiple six-figure business owners become millionaires, right? I have a broad range of what I’m able to do, but my niche is me, my niche is what makes me different. My niche is me being willing to be big enough and be seen as a player in this space. And I think that it is such a head game for so many entrepreneurs who are trying to really carve out a name for themselves in their industry, in thinking that niching has to become a very cerebral exercise.

Strategic Elements You Need For Your Niche

I’ll be perfectly frank with you guys. Yes, there are a few strategic questions that you have to answer. Like I’ve already said, I’ll recap those here. What problem do you solve for your audience? What person has this problem that you are speaking to what components or point of difference make you unique and make you the person that they should seek out and hire to solve this problem? These are all strategical components that we need to know as business owners so that we can include them and articulate them and make sure they’re clear and evident for our audience through our marketing. 

Whether you are doing organic content marketing, paid advertising, a webinar model, like whatever. Your How is for your marketing process. These are all the What’s that need to be included. So those are the strategic elements that yes, are important in niching. 

Successful niching is so much about the energetic component, how your brand comes across to the people that you are trying to attract and serve. And that comes back to this essence of not needing to get narrower and niche down, but actually, get bigger and rise up. 

So let me know if that makes sense. I am so passionate about this topic. And I think it’s a really, really common misconception for a lot of new entrepreneurs who approach niching from a cerebral place instead of an energetic place, bring the strategy and yes, but get into your body and take up space as you execute and actually market. 

Why You Will Never Narrow Down In One Place

The second piece of this episode guys that I really want to touch on today, about niching down being a lie and a myth is that you are never going to narrow in on just one place. So like when you pick somebody who you’re going to spend the rest of your life with like I think about the person that I was, and the person that Toby was when we got married, are we in essence, the same person? Of course, we are, do we have certain likes, dislikes, personality quirks, personal preferences, things that are turning us on turning us off at the moment that is different than they were three and a half years ago? You bet we do because we are constantly evolving as business owners. And as you know, players in whatever industry we’re in. 

The same thing is true for you. You are a dynamic creative being. You are not going to stay the same in your skillset, in your preferences and the things that light you up in the things that you’re passionate about in the things that are really like lighting you on fire and neither will your content, neither will your offers. Those things are going to grow and evolve as you do. 

I’m not suggesting that we drastically reinvent the wheel. Like if you guys have been hanging out with me, you know that I am such an advocate for cultivating a well-oiled machine in the business. Getting really, really good. I’ve used this analogy in the past but almost thinking about your business as like this looping artist masterpiece, right where we lay the first track down and we get that superset, we get that locked and loaded before adding in another layer on top, adding in another layer on top right this is how we build a sustainably profitable business. 

Your Business Evolves As You Do

We’re getting really really good at one thing, fine-tuning that, making it a well-oiled machine, and then adding in a new component, right. And that being said, right, your business is going to grow and evolve as you do. Your brand voice, your essence – it is never going to just stay the same. 

So if we’re wasting a lot of time, I see this a lot with entrepreneurs who are starting out or maybe making a pivot or feeling like Oh, the one thing I really wanted to do hasn’t stuck I want to rebrand or I want to find a better way to articulate myself to my audience but I’m afraid that I’m going to be stuck here forever or I’m afraid that my brand is going to be too small for me or I say I’m a mindset coach but really I help people with leadership and with business as well or I really help people with X, Y and Z as well or I’m a coach but I really help people with copy and creative as well. 

The thing is, you do not have to narrow yourself down into quote-unquote a niche or a playing field or a name for yourself in your industry that is going to feel restrictive, your niche will evolve and grow as you do because you are your niche, your brand is your unique signature in this space. 

So it is a waste of time. It is a waste of energy and it is definitely a waste of an opportunity cost for you to Again, stay in this cerebral head game of like, well, what’s the perfect niche and I want to make sure I fit myself in the perfect place. Meanwhile, we’re taking away the time that we could be front-facing in your marketing, in your messaging, on your Instagram stories on your live streams through your blog, whatever channels of marketing you’re pursuing. That is where your audience is waiting to see right now. What is turning you on and lighting you up right now? What are the problems that you are passionate about? Creating offers for sale to solve for your people right now. Give yourself permission to grow and evolve. Give yourself permission to not set a limit on yourself to narrow yourself down. 

Like I said, in the beginning of this episode, though, being narrow and specific, in your focus of what problem you solve that is absolutely important. But to think that you have to stay in a constrained small space to think that that is the one problem that you’re going to solve for hearing forevermore. That’s not the case. 

How I Evolved With My Business

I’ll give you guys a perfect example. When I started my business three and a half years ago, I called myself a radiant living coach. I was exclusively working in the women’s empowerment, personal power space. I wasn’t in business coaching whatsoever. However, I had invested in a lot of business coaches. I was learning a ton about building an online business, growing a team, marketing and sales. And I fell in love with that. 

After about six months, I started to have my empowerment clients coming to me saying hey, I’m feeling lit up like a freaking Christmas tree in Rockefeller Center, I am ready to go in life now. And I want to use this newfound radiance, this newfound power, this newfound zest to build a business. Can you help me do that? And my answer was, well, of course, I can. I’ve just done this for myself, I can absolutely guide you and support you to do this. 

This was the evolution for me, you guys of my niche becoming a business coach, my niche being the radiant entrepreneur and the leader of a group of 1000s and 1000s of women called the radiant entrepreneur, right? It was an evolution. Had I said to myself, well, nope, I picked my niche. I’m in women’s empowerment, I can’t go anywhere now because I’ve narrowed myself down and I’ve harnessed the thing and if I pivot now or if I make a shift now or if I open myself up now to help people with personal power and business, I’m going to just repel clients. 

Follow The Natural Evolution & Progression Of Your Business

Of course not that was the natural evolution and progression that was the organic unfurling and unfolding of my brand. And like I said, Guys, had I limited myself, had I not given myself permission to grow and get bigger with my brand as I grew and evolved, I never would have found the success in this industry that I have created for myself. I never would have carved out the niche that I now occupy and play in. 

Again when I first started my business was I known as somebody who helped six-figure earners become multiple six-figure earners? No because I wasn’t doing that yet. Was I known as someone who takes multiple six-figure earners and helps them double their revenue? No, because I hadn’t done that yet. Again, these were evolutions of my brand as I grew and evolved. 

So let this be your permission. If you are in this space, where you are setting your niche for yourself, you’re trying to harness that languaging, that messaging. Remember niching down and getting narrow is not the answer to building out that booked out roster, that waiting lists around that block the sold-out launches and programs. 

It’s so much more about getting bigger, getting specific, and the problem you solve. Getting bigger in your ownership as you market, as you execute, as you create content so that others know, hey, this is my girl for this thing. This is exactly who I need to seek out. Give yourself permission to play big where you are right now and know that your brand is going to evolve and grow as you do. That’s what happens in all businesses, you guys. 

We have to start somewhere, we have to dig in deep. And again, think of that looping metaphor, we have to get really, really good at that thing. And then if we want to make a shift or make a tweak or make a refinement, we do so after we’ve dug deep into that one thing, but you don’t have to pigeonhole yourself into a tiny little box forever. Like that is just so not the way to go. 

So I hope this episode has been both illuminating and instructive as well as like a heaping scoop of permission to get the fuck started with where you are right now the skillset that you have the problem that you solve, what makes you do it differently. And again, if you are looking to get so crystal clear and supported on this piece, and specifically supported to execute and market yourself through content that magnetizes your ideal clients – like we’re talking dream clients in your industry in your field in your niche – then get your butt on the waitlist for Nail Your Niche. 

Nail Your Niche is my signature program. We’ve had over 100 entrepreneurs go through this program over the last three years. It is literally gold. People have just raved about this and our alum have gone on to become some of the most successful entrepreneurs in their respective industries because the foundations that I teach inside this program are so spot on. Nobody is teaching niching this way it’s literally game-changing and revolutionary I am so in love with this program so if you want more support around nailing your niche head to the link in my bio to get on the waitlist for nail your niche or you could go to niche.caitscudder.com

I love you guys so much. Thank you so much for listening to this episode. Please let me know if you have any questions send me a DM on Instagram. Let me know your tap takeaway and I will see you next week for next week’s episode of born to rise.

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Hey, I'm Cait!

Boss mama, wife, and 7-figure CEO empowering women to build profitable, purpose-driven businesses that change the world.


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