Why you shouldn’t worry about being specific

Yesterday I mentioned that a positioning statement is built out of three elements.

A lot of people worry about the first element - defining your target market. It can be quite scary to say “I only want to work with A” when you know that there’s a whole load of B, C, D through to Z out there.

Why cut yourself off?

You need to think about things from your customer’s point of view.

If you’re a generalist, if you can work with A, B or C, then you have a whole load of competition. There are tons of companies that can work with A, B or C.

How does your customer choose?

Ultimately, when given a mass of choice like that, it’s probably going to come down to price. Because that’s the only constant that they can use to compare you.

But if you say “I specialise in A; I used to do B and C but A is where I’m at” then anyone interested in A is going to go straight to you. And you can charge more. The generalist may be cheaper, but the specialist is an expert. And it’s worth paying more for an expert.

Take action Look through your existing customers - which have been the most successful? Is there a pattern to them? Can you specialise in that area?

Rahoul Baruah

Rahoul Baruah

Rubyist since 1.8.6. Freelancer since 2007, dedicated to building incredible, low-cost, bespoke software for tiny businesses. Also CTO at Collabor8Online.
Leeds, England