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Membership Niche Selection Tips

August 9th, 2010 · 2 Comments · Internet Marketing

In order to make sure your membership business is profitable, you have to select the right market. Here’s how.

Number 1 – Discover Niches with Fanatics

The number 1 thing you have to do is find fanatics if you want a profitable membership website. What’s a fanatic? It’s someone who is so excited about a certain topic that they will spend their time and money on information about it. Here’s how to find fanatics:

  • Here’s something you may not have considered – magazines! We’re so internet-based these days, it’s easy to forget about them. In today’s economy, running a magazine is tougher than ever – some of the best ones are going out of business. So if it’s on the shelves, it’s making money, which means there is a big market interested in this topic. This is a very good indication that it’s a good niche for you to go into.
  • Watch and listen for fanatics in your daily life. Pay attention to conversations, social events, TV, restaurants, public places to see what people are talking about. People generally talk about things they are interested in. And this means there may be a market for information about it.
  • Don’t forget about clubs and organizations. If there are enough people to to build a club, there are certainly enough people to start a membership site on the same topic. By the same token, if enough people are interested to hold a convention on a certain topic, you can definitely find enough people to build a membership business around that same topic.
  • Think about the things that you are interested in. There’s a good chance that others are interested in these things, as well. Making money is fun and it’s even more fun if you can do it in a niche you’re excited about.
  • One simple and easy way to find out what’s hot is Google Trends. This service shows you the current most popular search terms. These topics are the hottest topics because lots and lots of people want information about them. Building a membership business around things people are actively searching for is a great way to ensure your success.

Step 2 – Determine the financial feasibility

Once you found a potential niche or topic to center your membership site around, you need to figure out if you can actually make any money in it. An easy way to determine this is to figure out if anyone else is making money in this niche.

Here’s a punch list for figuring out if anyone’s making money in your niche:

  • Find out if there are blogs or forums related to it. Just search Google for “YourNiche blog” & “YourNiche forum” and see what comes up. This tells you there are people who are actively interested in your niche.
  • Check Amazon, eBay and Google Shopping to find out if others are making and selling products in your niche. What you’re trying to figure out is if anyone is making money in this niche, and if people are selling products it means they are making money.
  • Monitor Google Adwords to determine if people are running the same ads for weeks in a row. If they are, this means they’re making money on these ads – otherwise, they’d stop running them. Which means there is money to be made in your niche.

Finally – Figure out your barrier to entry

OK, so you found a hot topic and you know other people are making money on it. Will you be able to get involved and do the same? Here are some things to look at to figure this out:

  • Product types. What kind of products are being sold in the niche? You’re looking for a niche that sells info products. That’s because it’s much easier to build a membership business around information vs. any other kind of product.
  • The last thing you want is a marketing filled with tons of competitors. A few means it’s a profitable niche, but too many means you won’t be able to take a piece of it.
  • Size vs. Competition. Some competition is good. It means that this is a profitable market. And as long as the size of the market is large enough to support the competition, you’re fine.
  • How quickly do people in this market make buying decisions and are the ready to buy? Every market is different. Sometimes people are looking for information and are ready to pay for it right now. And sometimes it takes weeks, months or even years for them to make the decision to purchase.

In Summary

OK, now that you’ve figured out what niche you’re going to go into. Determined there is money to be made and that the competition is not too strong to break into it. You’re ready to start your membership business. If you’ve done your homework, your business will be a success because you already know your market is a profitable one with room for you. Learning how to run a membership website is a topic for another article…

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