Whether its honey scented soap, a bespoke tailored suit or tin planters for the garden Ã¢â‚¬â€œ there is virtually no product or service you can’t buy online. The Internet’s growth is changing the modern day business model. Marketing is no longer limited to an advert in the yellow pages, or a 10 second slot on the radio. It has never been easier for niche businesses to reach a global marketplace.
Chris Anderson (editor Wired magazine) coined one of this year’s marketing buzz phrases in his book, The Long Tail: Why the future of Business is Selling Less of More’. The ‘long tail‘ is used to describe how the Internet has created whole new sales and distribution opportunities that never existed before.
Every business, no matter how small, can reach every consumer with an Internet connection. People now have access to a greater variety of products and services than ever. They no longer have to settle for soap that smells like…well, like ordinary soap.
Amazon and Ebay are model examples of the long tail in action. They supply a wider variety of books and products than you could fit in the whole of Harrods. They sell lots of different things rather than just large quantities of specific items.
Amazon and Ebay have only been able to grow at such a dramatic rate thanks to the Internet. If you can throw your net far enough you will always find someone who wants your product. The Internet enables you to throw your net worldwide.
If you are a small business selling a niche product then you no longer have to worry about the supermarket or shopping mall down the road. If anything, you have the upper hand and your size is your advantage because of your ability to evolve your web presence. Marketing online is about developing relationships and giving an insight into your business. Not one way advertising.
Thomas Mahon is a Saville Row tailor who started a blog to reach new audiences and market his business. He uses his blog to give his readers an insight into the time and effort involved in making every bespoke suit and his stories of Saville Row life.
Thomas’ blog took a niche, premium product and created a global marketplace for it by building awareness of his business and expertise. This exposure could not have been developed by a static website.
Thomas now travels to New York every three months to sell to his expanding client list. He has tripled his sales, launched a new line of Â£150 tailored shirts and is recruiting new apprentices. He attributes this squarely to his blog.