Short-Term Marketing Snapshot: 3 Pro Tips for Breaking into New Vertical Markets

One of the recurring themes we are hearing from existing and prospective clients today is the desire to branch out into new vertical markets. This is being driven by a range of factors. Maybe they feel their current verticals are tapped or sluggish. Or, they see opportunities in new markets due to today’s business challenges. Or, they’re just motivated to grow and know that they need to branch out in order to do so. Whatever the reason(s) may be, if you’re a B2B-focused company, breaking into new verticals is a good marketing strategy to fuel growth.

Following are three pro tips for venturing into a new niche:

Tip #1: Focus on Verticals Where You Can Leverage Direct or Outlier Customer Successes

The fastest path for entering a new market is to have some customer successes under your belt that you can use to help springboard yourself into the space. There’s nothing like proof that you know a market and have success in it. Sometimes though, that’s just not the case and you need to lean on your outlier case studies — or customer successes that are similar to the vertical you are looking to reach. Whatever the case may be, identify and develop 1-2 success stories you can use to tout your experience.

Tip #2: Become a Part of Their World

Once you’ve identified a vertical market and have your customer successes teed up, find ways to become a part of their world. There are endless trade associations, organizations, communities, influencers, etc., out there dedicated to every market under the sun. They provide infinite opportunities — many very affordable — for memberships, partnerships, sponsorships, advertising, marketing, etc. that you can use to get in front of their audiences. And these are not just the big trade associations. Many are small to mid-size organizations you’ve never heard of that have loyal communities that are interested and eager to discover new products and services. Full disclosure, though — it’s not especially easy to scout these organizations and opportunities unless you’re a marketing pro, which is why clients pay us to do it.

Tip #3: Chum the Waters

When entering a new vertical, you need to be prepared to try different things and see how they work. Don’t put your eggs in one basket. You’ve got to chum the waters by identifying a handful or so of opportunities that offer a mix of lead generation and brand awareness activities. It’s not realistic or reasonable to think you will get a ton of leads from one sponsored webinar with a group of people who have never heard of or seen you anywhere before. So run a banner ad on their website and e-newsletter, do a webinar, write a guest blog post, etc. In short, try different tactics that get you in front of an audience in different ways, run them over a period of time (one to three months), and then monitor and measure what works. And one other thing, don’t be self-serving with your content — focus on how you solve real-life problems in their world.

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