S04 E05 – John Locke on Pivoting Your Niche and How To Validate A Market For Your Services

Live In The Feast - John Locke

Today’s guest is John Locke. John is the owner of Lockedown Design, an SEO agency in Sacramento, CA focused on SEO for manufacturing companies.

John started his career in blue collar jobs and began doing general web design about seven years ago. In 2017, he started shifting his business toward strictly SEO because he realized search engine rankings were what his clients truly wanted.

In last week’s episode, Matt Medeiros talked about niching into a local market. John has taken the opposite approach. Initially, his business was mostly focused on his local area due to word-of-mouth marketing and local agency relationships. When he moved to focus on SEO, he removed the localization and decided to focus on the global manufacturing industry rather than base his niche on location.

John didn’t arrive at this decision overnight. Throughout his years working with his clients and with agencies, he took note of the trends he was seeing and started experimenting with case studies for the types of clients he wanted to work with. It was by no means a linear process, but eventually it paid off.

Currently, John is focused on content, regularly publishing articles on his blog as well as restructuring his YouTube account weekly videos. Content is an exciting place to experiment – providing value where prospective client’s need it most.

As long as you pick something that's in a viable market you should go for it because focusing on a special niche is going to help differentiate you from all the others in your industry.Click To Tweet

In this episode John talks about:

  • Understanding his client’s true needs and specializing in meeting those needs.
  • Cutting back on partnerships with agencies so he could have more control over the process.
  • Building a foundation for his business with monthly retainers.

Main Takeaways

  • Search engine rankings aren’t everything. If lead quality isn’t good enough, don’t be afraid to pivot or niche down.
  • Experimenting and testing your niche is an important part of the process. If your original niche doesn’t work out, you can always shift to another.
  • Learn to trust your gut. Know yourself and what your goals are and make sure your decisions align with those goals.

Important Mentions in this Episode