Follow your passion or cater to the market? These 2 paths both work, and have its own risks. Eventually if done well, these paths converge. It's a question of whether Meaning or Money is more important to you at the outset.
One way to find a specific pain in the market is to partner with hosts of existing audiences who have a problem that they (the host) isn’t solving but would be appropriate to bring to that audience in that context. “Hosts” might be bloggers, podcasters, magazine editors, decision makers at larger organizations, conferences, associations.
Broadly you can start thinking in terms of:
...then you’ve got to drill down further to more specific needs, or how pains show up and in what circumstances.
What problems would you love to help solve?
What problems have you solved in the past… think about your life experience, as well as previous jobs, volunteering, hobbies.
What have you spent money on, that you think you could do better?
WHY A SPIRAL:
It is hard to see it in yourself… easier to see once you start engaging with others.
One has to truly engage with helping others (whether one is doing it out of service or profit) to discover what the important issues really are, and which of those one is most qualified and interested to help solve.
You’ll build empathy for them.
You’ll much better understand their journey.
You’ll better understand what they’ve tried that hasn’t worked and what your solution is better for…
You’ll understand who you help best...
What problems do you solve, for whom, and how? And why do you do it?
That is one's niche on the Entrepreneurs’ path. (The “Why” you do it, if deeper than just money, makes you more connected to your audience, and they, to you.)
Not people or demographics or types of biz but cash flow: where is money being spent and how can I put my net into that river. It's where people are already saying this is important to me. Take a close look at that and ask yourself how you can contribute. What are you an alternative for? What complaints do you have about current solutions? What’s being provided already, that can be improved?
About the fear of niching down too much:
One of the biggest issues with Niche is: “My solution, my modality, can help everyone, anyone…”
When you say this, sometimes inside you secretly know we can’t help everyone with everything equally well… we subconsciously know we are over-promising, and we’re scared of being found out as a fraud.
Limits and boundaries don't have to make us feel confined. They can be essential for creating integrity. Integrity of a ship is the boundaries of the ship. Integrity for humans is setting limited, truthful promises and meeting them.
* Your passionate point of view.
* The results you (want to) create for people.
* The problems you (want to) solve.
* The types of people (and what stage in their life) you are best at helping.