If you want to be a “small time” entrepreneur, you really have to be flexible.
What do I mean by “small time”? Well, most likely you are not going to be reading this if you will be a “big time” guy. If you have the means to open up the next “Ford Motors” or “United Airlines” you probably are not reading this site! Those guys are “big time” business people. People like you and I can still do well, but it is unlikely that any of us are going to be opening up a Fortune 100 business any time in our lifetimes. Anything can happen, of course, but I think it is safe to say that most of us would fit into the “small time” category. Nothing wrong with that.
For a small time person, we can hit it big if we are smart, and play our cards right. One way that we can hit it big is by playing niches. A niche is a small part of a market. A tiny sector of a market that might not be profitable for a big company to target. But, for a small guy, even a tiny niche might be enough to make us relatively rich!
Lately, I have been exploring a new type of business with a couple of partners. We are close to getting into this business, and we would be getting into a niche within the business. I was talking with another friend about this, and he said that we were focusing on a tiny niche and doubted that we could make enough money in this niche. Well, we have done our research, and the niche is about 10 Million people. In general terms, that is a tiny niche, but in real terms, for a guy like me, the potential is huge. If everything went perfectly (which never happens) we could be producing gross revenue of more than $15 Million per month in this “tiny” niche. We could net probably a couple hundred thousand per month. Well, for a big company like Ford, that is nothing, but to 3 “regular guys” like me and my partners and I, well.. it is very significant.
When you go after these niches, they can, in my view, produce great income for the smaller player, but they are just too small for a large business to go after, it would just be too much trouble and cost too much.
So, this article is about being flexible. But, I have been talking about niches. How are they connected? Well, to me, chasing niches is flexibility.
If you watch your business, and see areas of business that are under served, be ready to go after them!
Another thing about big business is that those types of companies take a long time to change things or go after a new market. There will be meetings, committees to study things, etc, etc, etc. It can take years for a large company to “strike” at a new market. Also, it is the long process that makes it too expensive for a big company to even pursue these small niches.
If you are a small entrepreneur you are the perfect candidate to look for small niches and pounce on them. If the niche gets big enough after a few years, or if larger companies see that small players are doing well in the niche, those larger companies will come in. Two things might happen when larger companies enter that market niche:
- You may already be well enough established that you can still keep doing well in the business niche, or
- The big players may totally take over and you will need to move on.
Nothing wrong either way. Moving on when the time is right to do so is all about being flexible. You have to move on when it is time, or you will die trying to keep a market that you have lost.
In my opinion, being flexible has been one of the things that has made me quite successful as a small time entrepreneur. I believe you can do it too. The biggest key is to always keep an eye out and watch for things that you can do which are not being done, or being done poorly. Watch for things that people ask you to do and you don’t find any, or many, others providing the service. If people are asking for it, that means that there is a demand.