Vertical MarketingMonday, August 15, 2011
In our many years’ experience working with website development companies, we’ve found a number of common traits that the most successful share. One such trait is that they’re specialists in one or several vertical markets.
Vertical marketing mean selecting a specific market and establishing your company within it. Selling to every type of business can work for some companies, but it’s often easier to grow rapidly by focusing on a single vertical for a number of reasons.
This method can bring you a steady stream of business through word of mouth, presence at trade shows and targeted advertising. It also helps you establish your credibility in the market; if you can show that you’re aware of the needs of the type of business, potential clients will feel confident that your solutions will also be able to meet their needs.
Here are some key first steps for achieving success within a vertical market:
Secure an initial win
The first step is to sell to a key reference account in the target vertical market. Build this client an excellent website and use it as a model to demonstrate success for this type of business or organization. This sale can then be used as a launch pad, allowing you to branch out and confidently go after more of the market.
Become an Expert
To become successful selling to a vertical, it’s important to become an expert on the optimal web strategy for that market. Often, clients don’t know exactly what their website needs, or what kind of online strategy to implement. If you’re familiar with the market and the needs of similar companies, you’ll be in an excellent position to help them decide. If you can show a company that you’re familiar with their industry, they’ll feel much more confident in hiring you to build their site.
Leverage Your Success
Once you’ve begun to build some credibility in the market, it’s time to leverage that success. Each time you launch a new website, create a press release and publicize it. Start to develop case studies of your previous work, and collect testimonials from satisfied customers. A good word from someone in the same industry can mean a lot to a company or organization. Also, make sure to attend trade shows and other gatherings of potential customers.
Securing the initial deal can be difficult, but once you’ve begun to establish yourself, business will really take off.