Niche market

A niche market[1] is the subset of the market on which a specific product is focused. The market niche defines as the product features aimed at satisfying specific market needs, as well as the price range, production quality and the demographics that is intended to impact. It is also a small market segment. For example, sports channels like STAR Sports, ESPN, STAR Cricket, and Fox Sports target a niche of sports enthusiasts.

Every product can be defined by its market niche. The niche market is highly specialized, and aiming to survive among the competition from numerous super companies. Even established companies create products for different niches, for example, Hewlett-Packard has all-in-one machines for printing, scanning and faxing targeted for the home office niche while at the same time having separate machines with one of these functions for big businesses.[2]

In practice, product vendors and trade businesses are commonly referred as mainstream providers or narrow demographics niche market providers (colloquially shortened to just niche market providers). Small capital providers usually opt for a niche market with narrow demographics as a measure of increasing their financial gain margins.

The final product quality (low or high) is not dependent on the price elasticity of demand, but the specific needs that the product is aimed to satisfy and, in some cases, aspects of brand recognition (e.g. prestige, practicability, money saving, expensiveness, environmental conscience, or social status).

Niche audience

Technology and many industrial practices changed with the post-network era. There is a new drive for niche audiences because audiences are now in much greater control of what they watch. It is very rare to have a substantial audience watch a program at once, with few exceptions such as American Idol, the Super Bowl and the Olympics. Still, networks do target particular demographics. For example, Lifetime targets women and MTV targets youth. In this context of greater viewer control, networks and production companies are trying to discover ways to profit through new scheduling, new shows, and relying on syndication. This practice of "narrowcasting" also allows advertisers to have a more direct audience for their messages.[3]

In the fashion industry a growing trend is to have shop-in-shop setups where large stores promote niche brands inside to draw in new demographics. [4]

Online niche marketing

An often used technique for affiliate marketers is Internet-based niche segments of larger markets. Niche websites can be developed and promoted quickly to uniquely serve a targeted customer base, giving the affiliate a small but potentially continuous source of revenue. Example of small niche affiliate is this sewing machine site. This technique can then be repeated across several other niche websites. . A wider niche is harder to market as the expense of online advertisements increases according to the popularity of the keywords used (on Adwords and YouTube, for example).

Some niches may become saturated with marketers, increasing competition and thus reduce the slice of the pie available to each competitor. One solution is to find smaller, "undiscovered," but still profitable, niches, usually by searching out the best keywords to target. These lower cost keywords are called long-tailed keywords, as in the long tail of secondary keyword phrases that usually follow the main keyword in popularity of number of searches conducted by internet users. Because some are so obscure as to have few or no clicks per month, the trick is to find the right ones to target.

Another key reason for aligning your company with a particular niche is that it positions you as the industry. And by working with the same industry day in and day out, you become the industry leader. You need to involve yourself in the special interest networking groups and associations to embed yourself into their community.

See also


Look up niche market in Wiktionary, the free dictionary.
  1. The pronunciation of "niche" is more commonly either /niːʃ/ or /nɪʧ/, see entry at Merriam Webster Online
  2. "3 Rules for Niche Marketing". Entrepreneur. Retrieved 2012-07-09.
  3. The Television will be revolutionized Amanda Lotz 2007 pg180
  4. Britten, Fleur (2006-09-29). "New meaning for the term 'niche market'". NY Times. Retrieved 2012-07-05.
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