Hunting down niche audiences

December 31st, 2007

Here are the basic steps towards identifying an audience within a niche:

Look for publications and services that target people with specific interests: Magazines and journals targeted at a specific group of people indicate an active niche with commercial potential. Magic magazines told me a lot about what kind of audience was out there for my content.
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Your audience is a group of people in your niche that you want to market products and services to. Rather than trying to identify potential customers out of a random pool of people, it’s easier to find them by letting them identify themselves. My audience was people interested in magic who were willing to spend money on books and tricks. This is the same demographic that buys magic magazines. By flipping through those magazines I could get an idea of what people were buying and how much they were willing to pay for those items. By looking at the circulation of the top magic magazines I was able to get an idea of my potential market size. This is a very important number to know. I’ve known many first time authors try to approach a niche and expect sales twice the size of the number of people in it.
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Changing mediums for new content

December 17th, 2007

When you read a book and think that it would make a great movie, you’ve determined that it could be put into a different medium and be successful. Sometimes a concept is introduced in the wrong format. A good book might make a great video. An interesting lecture might make a great audio book. Sometimes you don’t have to change the content; just the way it’s presented and delivered.

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Apple is offering a free on demand seminar on podcasting on their website. They’ve got some very useful information from the pros on everything from production to promotion:

Podcasting is one of the most explosive technologies to hit the Internet. And with literally thousands of podcasts available on Apple iTunes, the need for high-quality production is critical. In this free, on-demand, three-part seminar Apple experts take you behind the scenes to see what it takes to perform a great-sounding podcast, produce a professional show, and promote a podcast to reach as many people as possible.

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What kind of business sense would you attribute to a store that closed on the busiest shopping day of the year? What would you think of a TV network that decided to air reruns on the one night that most of America is in front of the televisions? Welcome to the world of podcasting.
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From Wikipedia to Wikia

December 13th, 2007

How do you take a non-profit concept and turn it into a for profit business? Gil Penchina of Wikia explains the path they took to the Entrepreneurial Thought Leaders forum at Stanford.

The Contrasts of a Big Company and a Small Start-Up

Sometimes there’s a new niche and nobody in it really knows what they’re doing. Other times a niche has passed its peak and the people making money in it have begun to neglect it. It’s almost a cliché that anything “underground” looks like it’s been mimeographed in a basement and assembled like a ransom note. Many opportunities are just waiting to hit the mainstream if someone could make them a little bit more user friendly. Read the rest of this entry »

Here’s a cool resource of information from Apple featuring profiles of different companies and individuals that all use Macs. One of my issues with Macintosh magazines is that they’re all pretty useless. I wish they’d follow Apple’s model and tell us more about how people are using the technology than write articles on the 10 best FTP utilities (Transmit, end of story) or how to back up your iPod.

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Apple Pro

Ben Franklin

December 6th, 2007

FranklinBenjamin Franklin is amazing in so many different ways there should be a word used only to describe him.  Franklinawesometastic.  Besides being a founding father, he’s also the prototypical self-made man.  He may have even been the wealthiest American at one point in history. His biography on Wikipedia is a good starting point. The Walter Isaacson biography is an excellent resource if you want to delve further into this Franklinawesometastic personality. Ben Franklin

Google on Creativity

December 4th, 2007

Marissa Mayer shares with the Entrepreneurial Thought Leaders forum the Google point of view about creativity. She makes a great point about creativity working best with defined constraints. I’m a staunch believer in this and don’t find that heretical at all.


Nine Lessons Learned about Creativity at Google