It’s a big niche. We all know that. But, is it too late to get into the online marketing arena with a new online business?
Alright. Yes, we all know that the online business and online marketing niche is huge. So, the question remains… is it still a viable niche to get into today? What if you’re just starting out?
Anything having to do with making money can work well online. The desire is universal and the idea of creating a flexible, stay-at-home business is always attractive. That’s why so many people get into it.
This also means it is a highly competitive market. So here’s what you have to know about it:
- It is a very crowded market.
- The players who garner most of the attention have a lot of resources and budget – and often content marketing teams to help them rank online.
- As a market, there is a lot of demand. However, people are jaded. Skepticism tends to be the default position, so you need to bring your A-game to build KLT (know, like and trust).
Can You Start In This Market Today?
Truth is, people can see through your BS. And if they don’t see it immediately, they will eventually. I have seen my share of people who are starting from scratch, clearly don’t know what they’re doing, and yet want to start up a blog showing others how to build online businesses.
Just stop that. It is a horrible idea – and you honestly don’t stand a chance. Just keepin’ it real.
Most people who are able to start up from nothing in the online marketing arena have 2 traits:
- They’re actually not newbies at all. They have quite a bit of experience in other markets and know what they’re doing, but now they’re thinking of trying the online marketing niche.
- They find a unique angle with which to enter the market. They don’t do the exact same things as the rest.
When I got into this market myself, it was easier. It was just 2008. However, even in my case, I came into it after a full 10 years of working in the technology space and building and running a six-figure business in that market, reaching over 300,000 people per month with my blog.
Derek Halpern, when he launched Social Triggers, he did 2 very smart things. First, his value proposition was that he read the boring research in the fields of psychology and made it applicable to online marketing. Secondly, he made contact with other established names in the niche and did blog audits with them. Essentially, he’d get on a video and critique this already-established site. It automatically positioned him as an authority to that audience. It also differentiated him that he came into this with a New York attitude and it really stood out.
Another example is Pat Flynn, from Smart Passive Income. He was, to my knowledge, one of the first people to come into the space and share everything – including exactly how much money he made. His income reports literally put him on the map. Today, there are a ton of copycats and, honestly, I think posting income reports is a bad idea. But, it worked for Pat.
So, the point is…
How can you do something different in the online marketing niche today?
It is harder. There are a lot of creative people in this market. But, it can be done.
Market Gaps & Competition
This is such a huge market with huge demand that as long as you can honestly deliver real value to people and you’re willing to invest time and money to gain some traction, you can do it.
I think it is more important today to sub-niche this down to something more specific. If we keep things strictly online, then we have obvious things like:
- Video Marketing
- Paid traffic (Facebook ads, Google ads)
- Membership Sites
You can also specialize in certain certain types of businesses. For instance:
- Online marketing for dentists, chiropractors, lawyers, etc. Essentially, any kind of “real world” business sector, but you specifically help those guys expand their marketing to the internet effectively.
- Perform web-based services to help these kinds of businesses take care of the “tech stuff” to expand their online efforts.
Business models will usually be:
- Online training & courses. Very common in this market, but done correctly, there’s always room for more. The internet is a big place. 🙂
- Affiliate marketing. People in this market understand affiliate marketing, so there is absolutely no shortage of stuff you can promote. Many people in this space use affiliate marketing as their primary revenue model.
- Coaching, Done-For-You. A lot of people want more personal help… or for somebody just to do it for them. So, there are always opportunities not to be a teacher, but a service provider.
Getting traffic and doing promotion is the name of the game. This is the online marketing niche, so be prepared to have to market your ass off to make a dent. This includes:
- Having a solid content marketing strategy.
- Being fully prepared to invest money into paid traffic (Google Ads, Facebook, etc.)
- If you’re serving real-world business owners, you might even need to engage in cold calling, direct mail, etc. Be willing to contact and talk to people personally.
In other words, you’ll need to do whatever it takes.
Some opportunities I see in the space right now:
- Service providers who specialize (i.e. niche-specific site building and web design, building membership sites for people, etc.)
- Webinars, workshops have been working for awhile and continue to, as long as you have a solid hook and are willing to invest money into getting attendees.
- With a lot of focus on automation, I think there is opportunity in taking a more personal approach. Not selling immediately, necessarily, but fostering the relationship. Investing into starting conversations rather than merely leads. Getting more human again.