Importance of Niche Marketing

Episode 90: Importance of Niche Marketing, with Brian and Kim Walker

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Importance of Niche Marketing? Discover the role of Niche Marketing in business through our guide on the importance of niche marketing.

Importance of niche marketing? On this episode of Sell With Authority, I am excited to welcome two guest experts who have a fascinating story of success — and an unwavering commitment to specialization.

It’s the key to having better results. In this episode of Sell with Authority, Kim and Brian Walker co-founded their marketing agency, Shop Marketing Pros, based on their first-hand experience in the automotive industry. They found that automotive shops wanted and deserved quality marketing strategies to promote their businesses but just didn’t have the time to do it themselves. And — they needed a partner that would understand the unique intricacies of their niche.

Their journey underscores the power of going narrow and niching down. And — it’s not just about choosing a niche; it’s about immersing yourself in it strategically and systematically — plunging into the deep end of the pool.

Brian and Kim shed light on the path to becoming an integral part of your niche, building relationships, exploring the importance of niche marketing,  joining inner circles — and positioning yourself as the go-to authority.


What you will learn in this episode is about the importance of niche marketing:

  • How Brian and Kim have gotten where they are in marketing
  • How to “fail forward’ by learning from mistakes
  • Importance of niche marketing and becoming an integral part of your niche.
  • Ways to significantly resonate with your right-fit clients
  • The value of going narrow and niching down
  • Strategies for going deep within the niche so you are clearly recognized as the expert


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Importance of Niche Marketing: Full Episode Transcript


Welcome to the Sell with Authority podcast. I’m Stephen Woessner, CEO of Predictive ROI, and my team and I created this podcast specifically for you. So if you’re an agency owner or a strategic consultant, and you’re looking to fill your sales pipeline with a steady stream of right-fit prospects and get the at-bats that you need in order to build and scale, well, then you’re in the right place if you want proven strategies for becoming the known expert in your niche and attracting all the clients that you need. Yep. We’re gonna cover that. You wanna learn how to step away from the sea of sameness so you actually stand out from your competitors and own the ground you’re standing on. Yep. We’re gonna cover that too. Do you want to prove your business in the future so you can successfully navigate the next challenge that you know is going to come your way?


Well, absolutely. We will help you there as well. I promise you each episode of this podcast will contain valuable insights, tangible examples, and best practices, never theory, from thought leaders, experts, and owners who have done exactly what you’re working hard to do. So, I want you to think practical and tactical. Never any fluff. Each of our guests has built a position of authority and then monetized that position by growing their audience, nurturing leads, and, yes, converting sales. But all the while, they did it by being helpful. So every time someone from their audience turned around there, they were given a helpful answer to an important question. So their RightFit prospects never ever felt like they were a prospect. I also promise you every strategy that we discuss and every tool we recommend will be shared in complete transparency in each episode so you can become the known expert in your niche, fill your sales pipeline with a steady stream of RightFit clients who, again, were never, ever made to feel like one of your prospects.


Learn more about the Importance of Niche Marketing by listening to this podcast of Brian and Kim Walker: Prioritizing Marketing on Properties that You Own


Importance of Niche Marketing: Brian and Kim Walker Introduction


Okay, so let’s shift gears, and that’s kind of an exciting pun that you’ll learn more about here in just a second. But let’s shift gears toward today’s episode and our two guest experts. So, if you’re meeting Brian and Kim Walker for the first time, they’re the co-founders of Shop Marketing Pros, which is an agency that specializes in providing top-tier marketing to top-tier auto repair shops. Brian and Kim have a fascinating story of success, then some significant pivots, then more success, and I highly encourage you to listen to episode two of their podcasts, where they share all the ups and downs in complete transparency. and I will tell you that transparency is one of the things that I love about Brian and Kim the most. Their story is brilliant, and we’re gonna link episode two, in today’s show notes.


When I thought through how we might architect today’s conversation to make it as helpful as possible for you, in 2024, I realized that one of the red threads that runs through Brian and Kim’s entrepreneurial journey is how committed they are to specialization. And here’s what I mean by that. Before owning Shop Marketing Pros, they were auto repair shop owners, but not just any auto repair shop. The shop they owned the team, they led the location, and they selected the reputation that they built was the best. They quickly became the market leader. But how how did they do that? Yeah, of course, absolutely. They made the right decisions. They sought out the experiences of others. They joined peer groups, and they really dug into the niche in the specialization. They weren’t timid, and nor did they pay the specialization lip service they were all in. How they strategically thought, how they strategically and systematically immersed themselves into relationships, into industry associations, and building their stellar reputation, though, in my opinion, was remarkable.


Learn more about the Importance of Niche Marketing by tuning in to Our “Seed & Open Loops” Framework


Importance of Niche Marketing: Deep Dive into Niche Marketing


What is the Importance of niche marketing? So now let’s fast forward to 2008. They decided to pivot from owning a repair shop to helping other owners of shops more effectively market their shops. And here comes the red thread again. They didn’t just hang out a shingle and hope shop owners would find their agency. Nope. True to form. Brian and Kim embraced the strategy of niche, yes, but then jumped into the deep end of the pool, this time, from the marketing side of the table, they attended shows, they attended conferences, and not just one or two, like all of them. They spoke at events. They generously shared their thought leadership and so much more. So, no doubt, today’s conversation with Brian and Kim is gonna absolutely reinforce the value and importance of going narrow and niching down. But I think where we’re going to shine the brightest light, if you are willing, today is an even more significant opportunity than not just why you should select a niche but how to go into the deep end of the pool. Once you’ve made the decision, what are some of the best strategies that you can use to immerse yourself completely in the niche? So as the months and the years go by, you and your team go deeper and deeper and deeper, and you become so intertwined with all of the relationships in the inner circles within the niche that you are clearly seen as the experts in all caps. So, without further ado, welcome to the Sell with Authority podcast. Brian and Kim, thank you for having us. We’re excited to be here.


Yeah, that was quite an intro. It got me really excited and reminded me of a lot of highs, lows, and exciting times. So thank you for that.


You are very welcome, and thank you, guys, for taking the time. And, so let’s start there, Kim. So as, as I mentioned to you and Brian, I was gonna share a few golden nuggets, but I wanted you guys to take us behind the curtain and share more from your path and journey in just a couple of minutes. So, Kim, as you were listening to the intro, what were some of those things that came to mind about your path and journey that you think would be helpful for our audience to know?


Well, for me, I will tell you the most shocking part is that we’re excelling in marketing. And I did not come from a marketing world. I was an educator in a school counselor. And when Brian opened our shop, he asked me to join him. And I’m like, what do you want me to do? I’m not a technician, I’m not a salesperson, I’m listing all the things. And he said, well, you’re great with people. I want you to do marketing. You’ll figure it out. And so I’m like, I don’t know what that is, And here we are today. You know, and I love how in your intro, you talked about not theories but people who have actually done it. That’s how we’ve gotten where we are in marketing: not being afraid to learn new things and stepping outside your comfort zone.


Learn more about the Importance of Niche Marketing by tuning in to Our “Seed & Open Loops” Framework


Importance of Niche Marketing: A Journey of Expertise


What is the importance of niche marketing? And so that, I mean, I think that’s the big thing is that Brian asked me to do marketing. and so I did. And it’s been really a fantastic ride. And then the last thing I’ll say about that is, is really kind of figuring out what you’re made for. And for me, I’m a very fortunate person to know that my purpose on this planet is to teach, connect, and serve. And so when you talk about relationships and jumping into the deep end of the pool, like that’s me, that’s my element. That’s what I really love and value doing. And then Brian has his own area of excellence that he won’t tell you about, but we’ll see what he says.


Let’s dive deep into the importance of niche marketing. Brian will take some of those pieces a little bit deeper. And because when Kim just said like, people who have actually done it, and because you guys, you guys owned a shop and you built a shop with excellence and this excellent reputation, and now you help other shops really build and scale and grow their shops. So because you did it and did it with excellence for so many years, and this is obviously gonna feel like sort of a softball and maybe a d of course, Stephen, my, but my guess is, is that when you guys are meeting people at conferences and trade shows and you’re speaking, and all of that, like, that is an in, that’s a massive piece of initial credibility, right? That you have actually done it. Right?


The importance of niche marketing is something that definitely makes us stand out among, our competitors because we are the only ones in the industry that workshop owners. Hmm. Uh so we can, something that’s Im important when it comes to, working with clients, is to be able to have empathy, and we’re able to have empathy like none of our competitors can, because of the fact that we’ve literally been there and done that. You know, we, and then there’s the standpoint of just being able to have conversations with them that others can’t because we’ve done what they’re doing, uh down to, I mean, I was a technician and that’s, that is the, the case for most shop owners that at some point they were turning wrenches before they decided to become a business owner. And when they got into it, they usually did it because of their love of cars and love of being a mechanic and what it is that they do.


Learn more about the Importance of Niche Marketing by tuning in to Our “Seed & Open Loops” Framework


Importance of Niche Marketing: Learning through Hard Knocks


And all of a sudden they find themselves in a place where I can’t do that anymore. I have to become a businessman now. Yeah. Or woman. and that is, that is a difficult thing for so many to make the transition. And it was undoubtedly difficult for me when I listened to that introduction, I thought to myself, man, who are these geniuses that Stephen is talking about? And, the truth of the matter is, I mean, you know what, what you said is very, the introduction was accurate.  But the depth of the matter is that we learned everything through the school of hard knocks. Yeah. We made so many mistakes. We had so many fortunate situations where things just fell into our laps to be able to do things the way that we’ve done them. And also, we’ve done what we did because we had no idea how to do sales. Hmm. We had no idea how to run a sales team. We’ve never done outbound. I mean, I guess the conferences are sort of outbound, but we’ve never dialed for dollars or run a sales team or anything like that.


What is the importance of niche marketing? Well, okay. So, we’re gonna come back to the sales team piece in just a second. I wanna lean into the empathy piece because when you guys have shared your story, and this, I, this is episode two. Yes. And forgive me, I don’t remember if I think it was Kim who said this, she talked about how you guys felt alone when you own the shop, and you felt alone. And so now I hear you talk about empathy. And so, I’m just sort of like getting into the mind of a shop owner who, who doesn’t know where they’re going to find their next new customer, the following new profitable customer, how they’re going to expand, how they’re gonna add more text or whatever. And here, you guys come along with the fact that you not only have done it, but you have empathy for those who are trying to do it and feel stuck. And to Kim’s words in episode two, feel alone, I would imagine from Kim’s perspective, teaching, connecting, serve, that are potent points of connecting. Is that right, Kim?


Does the importance of niche marketing need to be explored? Yeah, for sure. There’s no doubt about that. It’s so ingrained in me that I think it has filtered down not only with our team but also with our team. When our CSMs are talking to our clients, when the rest of our team is spending time with our clients, and when a client expresses something they’re struggling with, our team now is like, you, oh, we need to connect you with this coach. If they don’t have a coach, then they’re connecting them back to their coach. But we’re always trying to find a way that can be a resource to people and point them in a direction to get those answers, which typically come from another. Maybe it’s, oh, we, we gotta tell you about one of our other clients that’s been there and done that. Let’s connect you with them. And so whether we’re emailing to people and getting them connected to one another or a resource or it could, it’s oftentimes, Hey, I know a podcast that was recorded where somebody’s talking about that same thing. So we’re, we teach at these conferences, and we teach webinars and things all the time, but the connecting and serving is absolutely, and you, I don’t think that you can teach, connect, or serve if you’re not coming from a place of understanding and empathy.


Learn more about the Importance of Niche Marketing by tuning in to Our “Seed & Open Loops” Framework


Importance of Niche Marketing: Navigating the Shop Owner’s Journey


What is the importance of niche marketing? When Kim meets someone, especially someone who is new in the industry side of things, they’re, they’re usually not new as a shop owner. They may have been a shop owner for years, but they’re, they’re new to being involved with the industry. And you can tell that they still kind of feel alone. They feel like they’re on an island, but when she meets them, and she gets to talk to them, I can see her light up because she knows that she’s about to introduce them to a world of things that are going to make their life better. And we’re, our business is, is marketing, but ultimately what those shop owners are looking for from us is to help them to be successful.  Well, there are so many other things besides the actual marketing aspect of what we do that can help them to be successful. And we, we love, like Kim said, being a resource to them for that. So she starts connecting them with these industry groups, with these people who are in the industry. And she can do it with detail because she knows precisely where their struggle is, and she knows exactly the people and the resources that are gonna help them.


You know, the content that we put out, I tell you this real quick. Yeah. The content that we put out, you would think that it’s just marketing.  But it’s really hard for us to stick to just marketing when we’ve been there and experienced. And we know that we have a nugget of information that’s gonna help someone. So looking back and looking for when you see a shop owner, when we see a shop owner who’s going through something that we went through, either we can come along and pick them up and move the help, move them forward, or we can help prevent them before they go through it to say, Hey, look, here’s, here’s what happened to us, and we see this is the path you’re on. This can prevent you from doing that. And one of the pieces of content we put that Brian did just recently was a blog on Failing Forward.


What is the importance of niche marketing? And it’s kind of a, a theme that we say all the time even internally when, when someone makes a mistake, you, we don’t have the culture within our company where when somebody makes a mistake, they’re terrified to share. Right. They know that we have empathy and that we’re understanding. Now, if you’re making the same mistake over and over again, that is a problem. But they know that we’re going to coach, mentor, and train. And so we say fail forward all the time. We say it to our son all the time, all right, what are you learning from this situation? So, Brian wrote this blog, which will turn into a podcast and probably a class. But the whole thing was to fail forward and learn from your mistakes. And so if we can use our past mistakes to either come along, pick someone up, hold their hand through it, or help prevent them from doing it at all, then I feel like that’s, we’re just missing out. If we don’t do that, we have to lean into that.


Learn more about the Importance of Niche Marketing by tuning in to Our “Seed & Open Loops” Framework


Importance of Niche Marketing: Unlocking the Power of Connection


So smart. So, how did you start to figure this out? Let’s go back to when you owned Peak and the name of your shop. not, not your first shop, but the name of your shop, your second shop. So, how did you really figure this out? As far as like, like when, when I, when I, when I hear your story, I start thinking, I literally start visualizing sort of like a puzzle or an ecosphere or whatever of like all these different things and how they, they, they connect together and all of that. And how did you guys figure that wonderful tapestry out and then start to remove some of the feeling of being alone? And then at the same point, you started attracting others to you who are like, Hey, what, what, what do these people over here? What do they get figured out that I don’t have figured out? So how did you start to, like, knit all of that together, see it, and then knit it together?


Brian, I saw your face lighten up.


Well, what I would say is where that really started happening was in the agency. And we, we definitely did that when we were when we were shop owners. I mean, when we were shop owners, early on, we did definitely feel like we were on an island then we got connected to the industry, and that’s when we, we were able to to start connecting with others and learning these resources for ourselves. And when we do something, we go all in. So, the next thing we know, Kim is president of the North Carolina Automotive Service Association, and I’m the mechanical division director. We’re putting on a conference for the association in North Carolina. But also, we were super involved with B and I, and I think B and I mean, well, gosh Kim can, well, probably don’t want her to tell you the story because we only had so much time, but then, when she first got started, um I knew that she was a people person.


 But all of a sudden, she got put into the situation where she’s going to networking events, and she’ll, she can tell you about how she cried, uh when she left her first networking event. But through the networking and through BNI you’ve got all these other business owners that you get to have these personal conversations with them, and you learn the problems that they’re having in their business and the problems that you’re having in life. And the ones where we had experienced those things, then were able to share our side and resources and everything just to, and we just did a podcast Monday evening with, a couple of coaches in the industry that had filed bankruptcy. And bankruptcy is part of our story. And if you listen to our episode, too, you can learn all about that.


Learn more about the Importance of Niche Marketing by tuning in to Our “Seed & Open Loops” Framework


Importance of Niche Marketing: The Path to Business Success Through Helping Others


But we have felt so many times where God has used us to be able to pour into other people who were going through financial difficulties or bankruptcy themselves or, or whatever so, so when you start doing that, and you see other people’s lives improving from the connections that you’re, you’re making between them and someone who can help them, or between them some resource, it’s something that, I mean, you, gosh, you just come to love it. And, uh it’s, I mean, I think that that’s just part of what we’re inherently here for as human beings is to help others. You know? So, when you get those opportunities, and then you start doing that in a byproduct of it that you don’t even intend for that to happen, a byproduct of it is that your business starts doing better because there’s the whole law of reciprocity and people wanna give back to you. So sometimes it comes from them, and sometimes it just comes from things that you can’t explain. 


You know, I think it’s Maya, Angelou, Angelo, however you say it. That said, and I used this when I was a school counselor, it was on my wall. People don’t care how much you know until they know how much you care.




And that really sums it all up. And there are people in this world who are very boastful about their stories and what they know. And I have this degree, and I’ve done this, and I’ve done that. But that does not resonate with people if you don’t really care about them.  And that’s where I think it all comes back to


Learn more about the Importance of Niche Marketing by tuning in to Our “Seed & Open Loops” Framework


Importance of Niche Marketing: Empowering the Industry with Care and Expertise


What is the importance of niche marketing? So, your quote that you just shared, mixed with what Brian just said, literally gave me an aha about how I was thinking about the Red Thread that ran through the shop and now through Shop Marketing Pros. and here’s, here’s what I mean by that. Now I’m making an assumption, like if I’m putting myself in the shoes of a shop owner, and I see how active you guys are in the industry, but it’s not from a pounding your chest of look at us, we shop marketing pros. To Kim’s point, it’s from empathy and caring. I’m looking at this as, wow, there’s a team of people Shop Marketing Pros. Here’s a team of people who, yeah, are sure. They help other shop owners like me, but they really care about the industry. They’re like lifting up the industry. They’re giving of themselves to make the industry that I’m a part of better. And so, if I’m gonna choose someone to work with, why would I not wanna work with two owners and their team of people who are so vested in the success of the industry that I’m a part of? Right?


Is understanding the importance of niche marketing necessary? Yeah. And I would speak, I would say that is a big reason, not that we’re pushing people to do that, but there, there we’ve had so many people that are just shocked that like there are people in our community who are a lot, feel like we kind of left the community like our physical geographic community. ’cause we were a big agency in our community. Okay. And now we serve a specific industry nationally. And so we’re not super involved. We are still involved. We give back to our community, but it’s not like attending all these events and doing all this stuff. But when you can niche specialized, you can make a bigger impact. Hmm. Do you know what I mean? Like, I can make an impact in my local community. I can still do that. And we still do that. It’s just very quiet. It’s very under a book under the rug, I think, is what Brian was saying. I don’t know.


Under the radar.


See, we talk about this all the time, Kim. I’m like, I’ve not heard the rug bump before up. She messes up every saying that there ever was.


We’re going to sweep it under the radar. there you are, there we are, and it’s going to be under the rug.


Learn more about the Importance of Niche Marketing by tuning in to Our “Seed & Open Loops” Framework


Importance of Niche Marketing: Choosing Specialization


Oh my gosh. I screw it up every time. That’s why I asked him. But that’s what I’m trying to say: we can still support our local community just as a family. Yeah. But when we picked the industry and got super involved in it, it just made it a lot easier to engage and make an impact and do that. So I, it just, I don’t know, it just makes sense to me. I don’t know why it’s so hard for people to grasp the whole specialization thing. It’s just amazing.


Well. So it’s forever to do it.


What is the importance of niche marketing? Well, but yeah. Okay. So, let’s talk about that for a second. Right. Because you guys owned the agency for about seven or eight years, I think, if I understand the timeline correctly. And, Brian, I think you guys had a business partner at that time, and certainly not trying to demonize that., I know that that was a good partnership.  And so forth.  But you guys wanted to go the specialization route, and I think he did not, if I understand that correctly. And so there was some back and forth there about the decision, right? Am I getting those pieces correct?


Yeah. So, our business partner was a fantastic human being. Just a great guy. And, he was creative we just a little bit of the backstory, I built websites that worked really, really well, but they were ugly as sin because I’m not a designer at all. I met him at church; he was a designer, and he was building websites just like using Dreamweaver so they were basically online brochures. They didn’t do anything special.


But they were beautiful.


Learn more about the Importance of Niche Marketing by tuning in to Our “Seed & Open Loops” Framework


Importance of Niche Marketing: The Power of Niche Down Strategy


And, but yeah, they were beautiful. So when the two of us got together, all of a sudden, we were able to build a website that had all of these fantastic features, and it was beautiful. Hmm. So, uh that worked really well. But he was creative, and he did not want to specialize in anything because he was like, how can I create hundreds of unique websites for auto repair shops just gonna all become the same after a while? And he was more about the creative side than the business side of things. And so eventually we just, we bought, we bought him out. And even after we bought him out, it took a couple of years before we truly niche down. And it was; I remember myself and my operations director; we were at the ClickFunnels conference in Nashville.  And everyone there was talking about niching and niching down. And drew from AMI, Drew has been telling us to niche down forever. And if I had just listened to what Drew told me from the very first meeting that I ever went to in AMI, if I just did everything, he said, yeah, this would’ve happened years and years ago, we would’ve.


By the way, we’re going to edit this piece because we can’t let him hear that.


Oh, see, I thought I saw you right down like a time spot or something so that you could pull it out.


And send it. I’m like, oh my gosh if Drew hears that.


Just like, well, I mean, you think about it, right? Drew told us to niche down. Drew told us about eos, and Drew told us about profit first. When did our business start really being successful when we niched down when we did Profit First, and when we went all in? Yep. Those things made all the difference in the world. But anyway, we were at the ClickFunnels conference, and all of these are talking about niche, down, and JR. And I drew a line in the sand. We said we would not take another client who is not an auto repair shop. And the crazy thing about it is we had zero auto repair shop clients on that day. None.


I didn’t know that. Yeah. We were a generalist agency. I mean, our clients were just local businesses. It was a race to the bottom because we’re competing against all the other local agencies who are now competing on price. We had zero auto repair clients. We but drew a line in the sand. And that was the hardest thing when we did that. But you know what, when you draw that line in the sand like I don’t know about you, but I’m that person that when my back is against the wall, I’m gonna fight like, like no other time. Yeah. And it puts your back against the wall when you do that because it’s, it’s like, we’re gonna if we don’t make this work, yeah. The business is going to die. You know, I’m, I’m looking at, I’m gonna go through bankruptcy again, so what am I doing? I’m fighting. And that was a turning point in the business when we drew that line in the sand. And then Covid was really, really good to us and there’s a whole long story there. I don’t know if you wanna get into that or not, but it, niching down is the, the best thing that we ever did.


Learn more about the Importance of Niche Marketing by tuning in to Our “Seed & Open Loops” Framework


Importance of Niche Marketing: Immersing Yourself in Your Niche


So I know we’d need to come in for a landing here in just a few minutes. I can’t even believe that our time is rapidly coming to an end, but before, before we have to go, I’d like for us to spend some time around the idea of, okay, so ni niching down, you guys made the decision, which, which is like fascinating. I forgot about that fact when you said that. And I was like, what? And then I remember you telling me that story once before, because normally, and this, not to make you feel bad in any, in any stretch at all, but like, usually it’s like, oh, we’re looking for clustering and that kind of stuff, whatever. But you guys had all of that experience of having owned a shop. So you guys making that decision is not like this crazy thing just out of the blue of, oh, let’s be shop marketing pros.


I mean, you guys had a lot of logic behind that decision because of the depth of experience and success that you had as shop owners. So, so that makes perfect sense. But let’s, let’s think about the, like the way you’ve, the way you have the way you dove into the niche and not just from, ’cause I think sometimes agency owners think, okay, we’re gonna commit ourselves to the niche, or we’re gonna launch a podcast, or we’re gonna launch, um we’re going to launch some sort of content or whatever, and that’s gonna help us go into the niche. But you guys not only did it with content, but you did it with activity, you did it with relationships, you did it with really truly getting plugged in to, to be one of, to, to be an advocate for the industry. So how did you do that? Like, like, like I know it started this, and then it led to this and led, and then all of those things knitted together. So, how would you suggest that somebody do that?


Yeah, so we are not halfway people. We are all kinds of folks, and we just did what we knew to do, right? So we started with what, what do we know? And we’d already been teaching classes and being super involved in our community. So that’s the direction that we took with regard to the industry that we were, getting into, which wasn’t new to us. Right? So I think that the key is that we, what we come from, came from being shop owners and being involved in the automotive repair industry as shop owners. So now we’re being involved in the industry as vendors. And so we already knew the conferences to attend, right? And so we reached back out, and actually, there’s one particular conference, specifically, it’s in Kansas City, and it is Vision. And we, that was a really big conference back when we were shop owners, and it’s only gotten bigger since then.


Learn more about the Importance of Niche Marketing by tuning in to Our “Seed & Open Loops” Framework


Importance of Niche Marketing: Becoming Industry Advocates


Hmm. And I had a great relationship with the lady who runs that. And so, even between our time as a shop owner and a Shop Marketing Pros agency, in the meantime, I still went and taught a few marketing classes there, even though I wasn’t even in the industry. So it was more about reconnecting and re-engaging with the people that we knew in the industry and the conferences and that sort of thing. And so I would say that’s where we really started. And then Brian is not he’s just a great technician in general with anything. He was a great technician working on cars, but his mind, so the content that he had in him putting content out, was also a big part of it. You know, we don’t, we said earlier we don’t have a sales team, what we have is a content team. And so that’s kind of his big part, which is bringing that to the industry. And then again, the teaching and attending these events. Brian, what would you would you add to that?


Yeah, so the teaching kind of happened by accident. I’ll go way back to when I started the agency when it was just my business partner Tim and me. And we were basically just doing whatever we could to drum up new business. And it was very slow going.  And Kim had a relationship with Constant Contact email marketing.  And she was in a program where she was an area local expert. Oh yeah. And she had taken a job at that time as the associate director at a children’s museum. And, the lady who was above all the ales reached out to me since Kim couldn’t do it and said, Hey, would you like to teach some classes for Constant Contact? And they were gonna pay me.


And look, we were, I mean, at that time, I was already working two jobs, bankruptcy. We’re building; we’re building the business, the new business; we’re still in bankruptcy. ’cause we did a chapter 13 and paid that thing all the way through. So I’m working in the Walmart distribution center at night, and here’s an opportunity to get some more income teaching for them. Never thinking anything more than that. I’m just gonna make some money teaching for ’em. So I teach the first class for ’em. And I, if I remember right, there were about 75 people in the room, and I’m teaching a class on email marketing, and at the end, multiple people walk up, and they’re like, Hey, can you just do this for me? Like, yeah, absolutely, we can. Well, I mean, that’s been the theme ever since then. We built the first agency, Five Stones Media, off of teaching, nothing else.


Learn more about the Importance of Niche Marketing by tuning in to Our “Seed & Open Loops” Framework


Importance of Niche Marketing: How Sharing Expertise Built Our Business


We would teach classes. And I’ve always said, if you gimme a room full of 50 people, there’s gonna be three or four of those people are gonna take what we teach ’em, and they’re gonna put it into place. There’s gonna be one or two people that are gonna ask us, can we do this? Can you do this for me? And then the rest of them are gonna do absolutely nothing with the information that we taught them. But it’s those one or two people every time that ends up becoming clients. You know, we did that all through Five Stones Media, and it was the natural thing. And teaching a class based around COVID is really what put shop marketing prose on the map. And I’ll, it’s an important story, so I’m gonna tell it and be very quick with it.


When COVID-19 happened, we were, Kim was supposed to teach at another conference. That conference got shut down because of COVID-19. Well, we’d been using Zoom and everything because we had a couple of remote employees at that time. And Kim was like, Hey, why don’t you let me teach a class for you on Zoom. She had written an article about how to market your business through a crisis. For example, when the shutdown happened, she immediately wrote this article about how to market your business through a crisis. So they asked her to turn that blog into a class. And that’s the class that she taught. Well, she taught that class and had a few hundred people in it. One of the people, no, that was the next one. One. Oh, you’re right. It was four. Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah. One of the people in that class was the guy overtraining for a giant auto parts company.


And he said, Hey, would you teach that for us? So she teaches that class. There are 1200 people in that class. In that class is the guy who is the CEO of a major oil company. Okay. He says, well, you teach that for our company. And she had like 600 people in that class. Well, all of these people that are getting exposed to our business, that’s really what put us on the map. And I won’t say that we had a ton of new clients immediately from it. We did get some new clients, but it wasn’t like we got hundreds or anything. Um, but that was their introduction to us. And from there is where it grew. We started to get asked to teach at different conferences. The teaching and the content are our sales team.


Learn more about the Importance of Niche Marketing by tuning in to Our “Seed & Open Loops” Framework


Importance of Niche Marketing: Final Bits of Advice from Brian and Kim


So, brilliant guys, this has been an absolutely awesome conversation, and I can tell that we’re just scratching the surface. So I’m gonna ask you now: I would love to have you back for an encore. I think that we’re literally just scratching the surface. Would you guys come back?


Absolutely. Absolutely.


Okay. I totally like putting you on the spot there, but, anyway, So be before we go, before we close out and say goodbye. and we’re gonna actually I’m gonna try to get back onto your calendars to be able to do an encore pretty quickly so we can keep this momentum going. But before we go, before we close out and say goodbye, what is the best way for our audience to reach out and connect with both of you?


Just shop marketing I’m Brian at Kimche. You can spell my name pretty much any way you want, and it’ll come to me.


Okay, everyone no. No matter how many notes you took or how often you go back and re-listen to the words of wisdom that Brian and Kim just so generously shared with you. The key is you have to take it and apply it. You have to put it into your business. ’cause when you do, you will accelerate your results just like Brian and Kim did. So guys we all have the same 86,400 seconds in a day. And I’m grateful that you said yes, that you are kind enough to come on to the show, to share your time, your expertise, to help us move our businesses onward to that next level. Thank you so much, my friends. Thank you.

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Sell with Authority Podcast

The Sell with Authority Podcast is for agency owners, business coaches, and strategic consultants who are looking to grow a thriving, profitable business that can weather the constant change that seems to be our world’s reality.

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