I chuckled at a story I read recently about Tony Avent, the irreverent marketer of highly unusual perennials. If you’re not familiar with his highly entertaining Plant Delights catalog, it offers more than 600 new, cool and wacky plants, ranging in price from $10 to $100+. If you’re looking for either the mundane or the inexpensive, Plant Delights is not for you.
Although primarily a catalog company, Plant Delights holds occasional open houses throughout the season. Recognizing that not every visitor is a Plant Delights prospect, Tony handles that fact with his typical humor. When a visitor complains that Plant Delights’ prices are too high, Tony hands them a preprinted map and directions…to the local Wal-Mart.
Not every company is so clear about their niche. Especially when business is tough, it’s tempting to try to be all things to all people, and that generally just makes matters worse. With a clearly focused market, you have unambiguous guidelines for all your marketing decisions, from advertising media, to search engine optimization, to merchandise selection. It can be tough to turn away business that doesn’t fit your niche, but it’s worth it in the long run.