The benefit of creating a category versus being an “also ran” in a popular segment

It is something that I see often in the content that is produced by marketers at large organisations. Marketers undertake keyword research in order to create the content that people are searching for. This absolutely makes; sense but there is a big problem with this approach that I see often. I’ve seen marketers that are not being honest with themselves and therefore not realistic in their areas of focus.



I have seen people trying to compete on very general search terms. Not only are these general terms often without the intent of more specific searches they are also terribly competitive. If you are just starting out I suggest that you don’t try to compete for attention on terms like “sports shoes” or “trainers”. You would be competing with established giants like Reebok, Nike and Adidas. Whereas if you choose to make shoes for people that play lawn bowls you will be competing in a far smaller market but will have an opportunity to be known for something specific.

It is so vital to specialise in a specific area. It is no fun being a challenger to the market leader. In most markets the market leader has over two thirds of the market share; whereas all the challengers all battle it out for the remaining third. Even if you have the same product as a competitor it is vital to create a specialism within that market, your own specific niche where you can have your own two thirds of the share.

This makes perfect sense for your marketing. The more specific that you are, the easier it is to speak the language that resonates with your audience. Being specific and categorising what you do is a vital step to your product marketing efforts. If you structure your whole communications strategy around the creation of a new category this gives a clear indication of the tone and style with which you create all of your marketing materials.

So when undertaking keyword research remember it isn’t just about looking at the volume of keywords or the intent behind the specific terms, but also about your ability to compete.

Share of voice is not a new consideration for marketers but is something that has perhaps been forgotten as new researching methods are introduced. I have sympathy with marketers as there seems to be new technologies bought out that can’t tell you the whole story; though the software providers never tell you this.

The lesson is that you need to interrogate where the data is coming from and remember being a specialist in a smaller pool generally gives you an advantage over competing with the big fish in the larger pond.

If you ever want advice on how to become a category creator feel free to reach out.

John is a data driven marketing specialist and website manager who lives in South East London. When he isn't blogging for us he works for NHS Property Services.