The Power of Micro-communities

By Brandon Ward

There's an exciting element to the world that's changed in the last decade that many have overlooked. All of us know something has changed, and we experience the benefits of these changes, but the lasting effects haven't sunk in yet.

We humans take time to catch up to things as they change, which is natural and has happened many times throughout our long and storied journey through evolution. The invention of electricity, the steam engine, airplanes, personal automobiles, computers, cell phones... On and on.

These inventions were all treated as impossible pipe dreams and never imagined to become everyday tools of the modern world that we all take for granted.

The same thing is happening right now with micro-communities.

What is a micro-community?

Merriam-Webstar defines micro-community as: the community occupying a microhabitat ==>: the microenvironment in which an organism lives ==>: a small or relatively small usually distinctly specialized and effectively isolated habitat (such as a forest canopy) or environment (as of a neuron).

Finally, a definition we can use!

The last definition for microenvironment nails the essence of what we're looking at here. The aim is to understand the importance of nurturing and benefiting from micro-communities by using them to build businesses. The focus is on the "distinctly specialized" of the definition.

When you apply this definition to the world of humans, you can start to see the power of this concept and how the internet has completely turned our world upside down. Not the upside-down from Stranger Things kind of upside down, but the right kind of upside down.

These changes have the power to create the most significant wealth and freedom boom the world has ever seen. How is this possible? The internet.

We all know the internet is awesome

Even with the bizarre and strange places lurking in the corners of the interwebs. The changes in the world are undeniable and have modified the way we interact with one another each day.

Keeping the focus on the right things the internet provides, having access to focused, niche, small, micro, unique, and global communities allows us to connect with people and potential customers in ways we've never seen possible. Here are some fun examples from a list you should check out:

  • A Subreddit For People Who Want To Drink While Showering
  • A Subreddit For People Who Love Airport Carpets
  • A Subreddit For People Who Think Birds Are Fighting A War Against Humans

I'm proudly a member of the "drinking in the shower club" when the mood is right. Even science has good reasons why we should all drink more in the shower.

Let's use the shower drinking community as a quick example. Here are five products to sell directly to this community. You could build a simple website, find a dropshipper that offers one of these products, load images, and get to marketing to this tiny little community of people.

You already have a lead on where you could market!

A silly example I know, but these micro-communities have so much potential as this is ultimately what all successful businesses do, they find a target market and go after it.

However, many startups companies don't know their target customers or clients.

Most businesses mold themselves to whoever and whatever appears to be interested. Also known as shiny object syndrome. The danger in this is that you're not speaking directly to the people who care and end up wasting time on people who aren't interested.

In a world that is all about going "viral"

We've forgotten the power of micro-communities and niching down to focus our efforts on one market and dominating that space.

So many of us think that we have to hit it big to become successful. We compare ourselves to companies like Amazon, Google, and Uber. We dream of billion-dollar acquisitions and juicy seed rounds. We often forget that Amazon started out selling books. Google started as a simple search engine, and Uber launched in San Francisco for limo rides.

We only see where they are now and wonder how we can be like them. Is that really what we want though?

The old way of seeing the world is rooted in this type of thinking, which creates narrow versions of success and outdated models of companies that no longer serve the market — the real humans who have problems that need to be solved.

It's possible to be wildly successful and no one to know about it. We've never lived in a time where someone could reach around the world at any point and interact instantly with accuracy and clarity.

Micro-communities are great for both consumers and businesses! The internet connects and unifies an almost infinite number of focused, specialized, and unique communities that all share something in common, regardless of where they may live and what they may believe! This commonality is the critical focus of a business. Companies can step in and offer something of value to these micro-communities.

Why micro-communities matter

I hope you're starting to see how this could positively impact your business. Micro-communities reflect a fundamental change in our world that we're still understanding. There are no longer limitations or restrictions on who you can reach and how you can connect, which has opened the flood gates of freedom and wealth to an entire globe of people.

Almost anything is possible now, and as businesses, we must capitalize on these incredible times. There are so many businesses and communities that have yet to be served and optimized it's mind-numbing. We're now at 7.7 billion people. How many micro-communities exist within this vast pool of people?

Our power as businesses becomes amplified as we focus and specialize. There's a reason specialists earn nearly two times their generalists compatriots make. Specialization and focus strengthens our skills and services by directing our efforts into one tiny space. Instead of staying surface level on many topics, we dive deep into the core of one problem.

This focus allows us to better serve the micro-community, unlike our generalist competitors. Specificity is why small companies can be BIG players in tiny communities. They can dominate the Google's of the world because of this articulation.

Building a business that allows you to be the big fish of a little pond means everyone can benefit. The small communities are now served and looked after by someone that understands their deepest wants and needs. The businesses benefit as they become the go-to for anyone who may have this need or desire, allowing them to grow as they better serve the market.

What this means for you.

Often we imagine that building a successful company is like climbing the tallest mountain in the world, but we forget there are many, many mountains to climb and many adventures that one can take. The highest doesn't mean the most rewarding or the most fulfilling. It's merely a matter of perspective.

These micro-communities have created an incredible opportunity for anyone willing to put in the work and effort required to be successful, but it's completely doable when you focus and nail one thing.

You don't have to be a global sensation to be great at what you do. Focus is what's required. Being specific will present a clear picture of who you can help and what is needed, which will allow you to tailor your products or services to their needs. The focus enables you to speak directly into their struggle and offer a path forward. You become the expert; the Gandalf to their Froto.

Remember, focus does not mean you never grow into other micro-communities. It only empowers any effort you will have scaling into other micro-communities when you understand the fundamentals of dominating a market segment.

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Advisory Cure is an Inbound Marketing Agency based in San Diego, California. We help tech start ups develop and execute inbound marketing strategies in order to reach a larger audience and increase demand for products and services.

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2019 Advisory Cure