This one took me years to figure out.
There is very little difference between a residential real estate agent and a commercial real estate agent. They both show properties. They both depend on word of mouth to grow their businesses. They’re both in hyper-competitive industries. They both work the same amount of hours. But on average, successful commercial brokers make more than residential brokers do.
I know a bunch of SEO consultants. They all do the same things – they write content, they optimize title tags and meta tags, they work aggressively on link-building campaigns. Most of them have moderate success. But in a year, one of my buddies has built a multi-million dollar SEO business, working only with attorneys who are willing to pay a premium to be first.
You could offer two clients the exact same service, the exact same amount of work, the exact same results. But the value of the service is worth considerably more for some customers than for others.
Now, there are certainly other factors to consider when drafting a marketing plan or defining your target market. Would you enjoy talking to attorneys all day? Perhaps not.
But it’s important to remember that in just about any industry, there are segments of the market that are more attractive than others based on their temperament and their pocketbooks. My buddy, for example, has found that attorneys are actually great to deal with. They are bottom-line focused, don’t get wrapped up in details, and will generally leave you alone as long as you’re getting them results. And they pay on time, which is always a plus.
Contrast that to a venture I worked on in a former life that went after bed & breakfasts. The price point had to be low because they didn’t have a lot of money. Because it was their baby, they were extremely hands on with all aspects of the process.
In the years since, I’ve worked on projects with major universities that were worth hundreds of thousands of dollars, had giant committees, etc. And in comparison, the university clients are a walk in the park relative to the clients we had in the B&B industry (this isn’t to say that they all are, but enough of them were to convince us in fairly short order to get out of the industry.)
The point is that there is a segment of the world who will love what you do, will pay you well, and will offer a minimum of headaches. And there’s a segment that will cost you significantly more in time, money and energy, with less upside. Same amount of effort, dramatic differences in revenue and general well-being.
The choice is yours.