Jack of all trades, master of one! In today's freelance market, most sectors seem to be extremely populated. When figuring out your brand and deciding what you are going to offer, it can feel a bit like being a drop in an ocean. It's hard to come up with an innovative idea or unique service that people will actually use and benefit from. While this is true and untapped ideas are harder to find I believe that targeting a niche in the market will help you in your pursuit of freelance happiness.

Experienced freelancers working within niche markets tend to have a deeper understanding of their customers and what they want and need from the products or services that they use. They have a far deeper level of knowledge about their product or service. The reason behind this is simple, by focusing all your energy and research on a particular set of people, the chances are you are much more likely to get a deeper understanding of your customer rather than carrying out research on a widespread group of people that are all very different in terms of professionalism, experience and what they expect from a product. 

The fear of reducing your potential client base by going niche is real.

It's natural to offer multiple services when starting out as the idea of widening your net increases your chances of landing a job. The alternative view to this strategy is that you're offering a diluted service in a crowded marketplace and a client will always choose a specialist rather than a jack of all trades. There is no right answer, however, there are advantages to being a niche freelancer that I've learned over the years.

By targeting a niche in the market people tend to worry that you are narrowing your audience. It can feel like a negative and limiting step to take in freelance business but the benefits that you can gain from really understanding your audience and providing them with a product or service that you know will be valuable to them will be more favourable in the long run.

Niche Freelance

Knowing who your audience is in a very specific way makes it much easier for people to refer customers to your business with the understanding that you will definitely be able to assist them. If you want to target a niche in the market consider who benefits most from your product or service and which customers you are most passionate about working with. Think about the industries that you already know a vast amount about and the industries that will continue to hold your interest. According to the book Outliers by Malcolm Gladwell it takes 10,000 hours of work to become an expert in your niche so it is beneficial to pick a specialism that you are truly passionate about to keep you engrossed.

Targeting a niche in the market can help your business no end, and can actually attract more business, as customers know that you specialise in their line of work. I'm known as 'the headshot guy' and I've embraced that tag literally by building a brand around that reputation. 

Another advantage to niching is that you can charge more for your product or service as you are the perceived specialist! Does your business lend itself to targeting a niche in a market? If so, how can you see it benefiting your business? Focusing on your freelance businesses’ unique selling point (also known as a USP) is a great place to start when trying to decide who will benefit the most from your product or service.

The great thing nowadays is also having so many different platforms to test your ideas out on. Join LinkedIn forums, groups and chats and monitor hashtags on Twitter, carry out research to test your target demographic before you fully commit to making any financial (and timely) investments. Most importantly, ensure that you love what you do. Particularly if you choose to go niche, money alone will rarely motivate you week in, week out to put in the hours. 

This article was written by John Cassidy, The Headshot Guy.