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Focus = Success

When I was getting my MBA I studied 200 businesses, trade associations and non-profits. Among the most obvious lessons from this effort was that a focused strategy is usually a successful strategy.

Look at the businesses that have failed or declined in recent years: Sears lost focus and, of course, failed to recognize how internet shopping would threaten their future. Sony focused on films and music and lost much of its product edge.

Most of our clients are but one of many competitors in highly-fragmented fields. So they don’t have to mirror or respond to competitors as much as they just need to own their niche.

We find there are several ways to focus on a niche. One that is obvious is geographic. Business leaders have long considered their geographic markets but digital advertising now allows for hyper-local geographic segmentation. Another obvious one is demographic. From the size and shape of a market to particular sectors within it, demographic targeting can be so useful.

Less obvious is psychographic targeting. This is essentially targeting by mindset; the way people may think about your product or service or organization. Most of our clients are strong companies that don’t want revenue as much as the right kind of revenue. They recognize that targeting the wrong people with the wrong mindset (perhaps all they care about is price) only creates more problems.

It’s not easy to grow a business these days, but the best leaders usually recognize the need to focus in some way, shape or form. And then they do.