I have done an episode (or twelve) about being multi-passionate and what that looks like when it comes to ideal clients and niches. I often get asked: “Can I have TWO niches and ideal clients?” So, let's talk about it.
Can I Have TWO Niches and Ideal Clients?
Want to listen to the podcast version of this post? I’ve got you covered!
First, I hope that all of you have had a lovely holiday season and are looking forward to 2021! (Still no reset button to make the world go back to normal… but at least it’s a symbolic change!)
Let’s dive in!
I’m currently running a live course called Insta Sales School. It’s all about how to use Instagram to grow and sell! One of the first things we needed to do was make sure that everybody nailed their niche. They need to know who they’re talking to to guide everything else.
I had one person who told me that they did two different things. They were closely related, BUT they were still two different niches and two different ideal clients. To give you an example of what I’m talking about, if you say “I teach people how to do web design and I also do web design,” those are two very different things. They have very different ideal clients, and they’re very different niches. The person who wants to learn web design is very different from the person hiring out their web design. And the content you put out for those two audiences is vastly different.
The other thing I was hearing often was that people are passionate about two different things but want to talk about both of them. And those different things are in two different niches with two totally different clients.
And then comes the question: can I have two niches and ideal clients?
In both scenarios, the answer is NO. At least, not at first.
I’ve done a whole episode about how to be successful as a multi-passionate person (which you can check out here). The truth is, if you talk to everybody then you talk to nobody. That’s what I want you to remember from this.
If you’re planning out your content, it will be really clear what you should post if you only have one ideal client. But as soon as you add a second ideal client, the waters about what content you should be creating get muddled. Ideal client means ONE.
Let’s take the example of creating content for my podcast and for YouTube. Imagine I decide I have two ideal clients: the beginning business owner and moms who want to start a business. Those are two entirely different audiences. If you have to decide what to create, you’re splitting your focus at best and totally losing the other part of your audience at worst. It will take you twice as long to grow if you're constantly switching up who your content is for. If you’re splitting it between even more people, then it will take even longer.
Let’s pull back the reins. Stick to ONE niche and one ideal client.
I am a multi-passionate person, too. I have put myself in this rabbit hole way too many times in this life. That is the biggest reason why I didn’t grow as quickly as I should have in my first five years of business. I also know it’s why my growth was slow even as I got focused – because I would get distracted and go another way.
I can PROMISE you, from experience, that this is true. If you want to have a successful business and hit a certain monthly income, BUT you also want to do two different businesses with two different niches… I’m here to tell you that those things are not compatible with each other. You will not have successful businesses if you’re building them all at once.
You will not have success focusing on two niches or two or more ideal clients at first.
Imagine that there are two different roads you can take to Target. They’ll get you there at the exact same time, no matter which one you take. So, you start going down the road on the left, you make it 0.5 miles, and you decide the other road is better. Now, you turn around and start on the other road – but you make it one mile and turn around because you’re afraid the other road was better. And you repeat over and over again. It’s going to take you quadruple the time to get to Target because you’re never actually making progress toward your goal.
If you had just said, “nope, this is the road I’m taking to Target today,” then you’d get there and be shopping while the other you will still trying to figure out which road to go down.
When I tell people they have to pick, it usually makes people upset. They love both options and don’t want to choose. I get that – I do. But, it’s a choice between success or failure. I hate to be that harsh, but sometimes people need to hear that harshness.
Again – you cannot have two niches and two ideal clients at first.
I always hear the same thing: “Well, this person has two successful businesses! What about her?” Yes – but I GUARANTEE, would-put-money-on-it guarantee that anybody you see with multiple successful businesses or niches built one first. Then, when the first one was on autopilot, they built the other one.
I gave the example of someone saying they wanted to be a web designer and teach web design earlier. If you’re trying to grow both of those facets of your business at the same time, it will be almost impossible because you’re talking to two totally different audiences. Even if it feels the same in your head, the ideal clients are different.
Let’s imagine that this web designer has been working at their business for the past four years and they’ve hit the six-figure mark (which is a hard milestone for many people to reach, so take this as a further out example). That person has their process down, they’ve got tons of credibility, and their content is working on autopilot. Maybe then, they want to launch a shop of pre-made web design templates and/or teach people how to do their own web design. Well, now they can – because the other business is already built and successful on its own.
Now, they can go and create content for people who need pre-built websites or want to know how to do it themselves. You CAN have two or three niches and ideal clients. But you can’t have them all at once – and you can’t build them all at once.
My Theory of Half-Dug Holes
I call this my theory of half-dug holes. Someone has walked into your yard and planted two shovels in the ground. They tell you there is gold at the bottom of both of the spots where the shovels are. But you have to dig to the bottom and get the gold.
You could dig to the bottom of one, get that gold, and then dig to the bottom of the other. But for whatever reason, you decide that you want to dig a little while on hole number one, then hole number two, then repeat. It takes two hours to reach the bottom of these holes when you dig at them consistently.
If person A digs just in the first hole, then they’ve reached their gold in two hours. Now, they can start on the other hole. And, given two more hours, they’ll have two sets of gold.
Now person B has spent 20 minutes on the first hole, 20 minutes on the second hold, and so on. That means that, in their two hours, they haven’t reached the gold in either hole.
Do you see the point here? If we split our focus, we’ll never reach that level of success. You’ll be stuck without gold while other people have the opportunity to grab it out of both of the holes.
You’re going to create better content, better products, and better everything if you are focused on one niche talking to one ideal client.
You should definitely check out the episode where I talked about the Rule of One – click right here to give it a read.
I will NEVER tell you that you have to follow the Rule of One forever. You just need to do it until that side of your business feels like it’s on autopilot – and then you can go and start the other thing you want to start.
So, to summarize here… can you have two niches and ideal clients? No, not yet. You can’t build two businesses or two niches at once. But, once you focus on one and get it up and running on autopilot, you can absolutely add another. If you spread your focus out, everything will move slower. You can’t get to Target if you take both roads. You can’t get the gold if you can’t pick which hole to dig.
Focus, focus, focus on one niche and one ideal client.
How do you know when you can add another niche and another ideal client?
My advice here is to set a goal for yourself. When you do X, then you feel comfortable enough to add another niche/ideal client. It doesn’t have to be monetary, but it can be. Your goal could be about vanity metrics. It could be literally anything.
Maybe you say, “I will do this thing until I am consistently making $10,000 per month.” “I will focus here until I hit 100,000 subscribers on YouTube.” “I will do X until I hit Y amount of revenue on a launch.”
What I have found in myself is that, once you hit that goal that you set, you tell yourself you can’t stop now and keep going! It’s kind of like how people (by people I mean me, but also in general), they struggle to stick to a diet or workout plan. They say that they’re going to run for five days straight, and then they can stop if they don’t feel good about it. 99% of the time, we won’t want to stop if it’s something that’s good for us.
So, focus on ONE niche and ONE ideal client. You can get there from here – I promise.