Over the last several weeks a formerly vacant restaurant near the highway close to my home was being renovated. It has been closed for a few years and I like many others were curious as to just what or whom might be opening up in that location. Just what person or persons thought that they might be successful carving out a niche were others had previously failed?
All mysteries were revealed last week when a sign went up and they were open for business. A small hometown market akin to the larger Amish themed stores that are famous in our area. ”So what.” I can hear some of you saying to me, but let me give you some demography. They are less than 500 yards from 2 gas station/convenience stores and about a mile and a half between two full service groceries. To add to the mix within a half mile are two small markets, one Italian, and one more a bit like a butcher shop/deli like.
The reason I bring any of this up is Technology Workgroup helps business get found online using internet marketing, search engine marketing, and social media. Many times we have people ask us questions about finding a market or a niche. Often times I hear that the market is saturated, there is no more room for another pizza shop, mom and pop grocery, or coffee shop.
I disagree and probably always will. A niche is about being unique and in demand and if you think I am just promoting my own agenda check out this article from the Wall Street Journal. I will expound on this a bit as I found myself in this position Saturday morning.
I got up out of bed and was going to bake a coffee cake for Sunday morning coffee fellowship. To my surprise I had no eggs to bake the a fore-mentioned cake. Now I could have stop at this point, but the mix, oil, and water were in the bowl. (I know I should have gotten my mis en place together before starting, forgive me Chef Soren.) So now I have to make a decision, ask the neighbor for four eggs, haul my self to the grocery, or…you guessed it! The new little market near my house. Not that the other markets don’t all carry eggs, or the gas station, or the other little markets, but I knew for certain this little store would have them.
Another characteristic of this little market is that they are open from 8:00 AM to 5:00 PM all week and closed on Sunday. They carry some very hard to find items like flours, grains, and flavorings for candy. Most of their items are also in bulk, and they server hand dipped ice cream like the big stores in Amish country do, very generous and not too pricey. They have filled a void for many it would seem from the look of the cars that came and went this weekend. As I traveled past in my errands their parking lot was full all weekend long.
Will they last? Only time will tell. I certainly hope so, but in the mean time they serve as a reminder to me that the ability to IDENTIFY a need, CREATE a unique product or service, and WORK to make it happen will separate the people with lists and ideas from those with dreams and the ambition to pursue the things they want.
Maybe you are stuck, maybe you need some help creating or finding a niche, maybe your social media or internet marketing efforts need a lift. Whatever the case maybe contact us and we will be happy to consult with you on ways to improve your find-ability and niche marketing.