I was talking with someone about their job search. They were trying to figure out whether to blanket the market with their resume (applying to every remotely relevant job posting with the generic cover letter in the hopes of finding someone—anyone—to give them a job) or focus their energy, time, research and networking efforts on a few “dream job” postings.
Then I went to a client meeting where we were talking about developing a plan to market to professionals in a particular industry. The question that arose was whether they should scatter their efforts across the entire industry or focus on one particular subset of that industry.
In both cases, my answer is: focus!
The old adage “niche to get rich” completely applies in both cases.
In marketing, if you choose one area to highlight, you can create a richer message that will be more compelling to your target audience. It may be a more tightly defined audience, but the message has the opportunity to resonate in a more powerful memorable way.
My answer to both clients is to establish yourself in one market and then build on and expand from there. The job seeker ended up having more success when she focused on a few choice job postings and in due time landed a “primo” job for which she was well-suited.
For the small business, the focus on one small sub-segment of their desired expansion market allows them to establish a foothold in that segment and then expand from there. This streamlines communications, maximizes limited budgets, and prevents wasted, scattered (and ultimately exhausting) effort on the part of the sales team that has limited time for new business development.
So if you’re struggling with where to spend your precious, limited time, don’t hesitate: go deep. My advice is to focus on the tightly defined target in order to see the fastest results possible.
Do you agree? What has been your success? Is it better to go broad or go deep?