The New Scaling Strategy: Go Small Instead of Large

Adam Rowe

Today, in counterintuitive advice: It turns out that the best way to grow a large social audience in 2017 is to aim for a niche audience. How do you get large by aiming small? This article looks as how the process works, and why it's such a big deal for everyone to understand it.

Go Niche or Go Home

Writing on his blog 500ish Words, M.G. Siegler breaks down the way a social media network or other audience-based app can expect to attract that essential audience. Basically, Snapchat was the last big social platform, and by now, the market is saturated. No social platform can scale to a massive audience, no matter how good it is, because it won't deliver a significantly better value than the existing networks.

But because those platforms are so large, they are a great environment for smaller, targeted platforms to take hold. Here's the essence of Siegler's argument:

“A decade ago, relatively few people had a smartphone, so if you were building a service to run on it, you were best positioned if you built an app with as broad of an appeal as possible. Now, because everyone has a smartphone, the opposite can be true.

“If I was to give advice to anyone looking to build a social network right now, it would be pretty simple: go granular. Niche, even. The road to massive scale is closed, but another one has opened. A large percentage of a small base is still small. But a small percentage of a massive base is large.”

Once you have your niche base, you can monetize it directly or you can continue growing by using your existing audience as a foundation for branching out.

In 2017, the Niche Is King

You may have heard me praise the concept of niches before: The niche is killing fads, giving you better data, and nabbing better engagement. It's also the best way to get traction with a new blog, though you'll have to be passionate about it. And now you know it's the future of social media platforms.

Cat videos had their run: Looks like niche engagement with passionate communities is the future of social media.

Read more about niche marketing at Tech.Co

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Adam is a writer at Tech.co and has worked as a tech writer, blogger and copy editor for the last decade. He's also a Forbes Contributor on the publishing industry (and Digital Book World 2018 award finalist) and has appeared in publications including Popular Mechanics and IDG Connect. When not glued to TechMeme, he loves obsessing over 1970s sci-fi art.

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