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Step 3: Where do your passions/skills overlap with what clients are looking for?
Look at your lists
The last step is looking at where your passions and skills overlap with what clients will pay you for. When looking at your passions, skills, and interests, are there any that someone would pay you to teach them?
Referring back to the SPI Certification, if you have this, someone will pay you for your knowledge. And if you’ve been a guide at a company, you also have experience, which sets you up perfectly to start your own niche outdoor guiding business.
Make sure your guiding business is profitable
Okay, so you have the SPI Certification, you love working with people, and you have previous experience guiding—now what?
You need to make sure your niche business idea is profitable.
Start researching. See who else is offering what you plan to offer. If too many businesses are offering the same thing, it’s a saturated market and you’ll have a harder time growing your business. It won’t be impossible, but it’ll be much more challenging than if you were to offer something more unique.
Places to check:
Google Trends—Shows search trends on Google (Is your niche growing? That’s a good sign).
Travel + Leisure—See what’s trending in travel.
McKinsey & Company—They publish a lot of reports. Here’s on US Summer Travel 2022 to give you an idea.
Facebook Ads—We know, Facebook, grumble. But you can build out an audience (without starting an ad campaign. This will show you how many people could be potentially interested in what you offer.
If your tour guide business is unique with very few, if any, competitors, see how many people are searching for what you’re offering. If there aren’t many people searching for it, you may struggle to get enough clients.
The ideal is few competitors, high search volume. The more specific your adventure guiding business, the fewer competitors you’ll have. And if people are searching for it—enough to make a profit—then you’ve found your business niche idea.
Even if there are several competitors, you can differentiate yourself through your values, what’s offered on trips, where you take your clients, the price, and the quality of your guided trips.