How to Identify and Establish Your Barber Niche in Your Barbering Career

A barber works on perfecting the perfect fade on his client in his chair, part of his barber niche.


Identifying and establishing your barber niche can give your shop and career a clear direction for the future. It helps determine your specialty, plays into your expertise, and can influence the clients that your barber shop appeals to.

Being a barber can be exhilarating.

It’s an industry full of potential to embrace your creative expression, expand your skill set, and forge your own path.

For some barbers, the sheer possibilities can be overwhelming, leaving them wondering which path they should take to grow their barbering biz and career.

One way to illuminate your route and give your barber shop a clear direction is to identify your barber niche and establish yourself within it.

Of course, this can be easier said than done, especially if you enjoy many facets of barbering and love being a Jack of all trades.

Find Your Barber Niche and Build a Reputation

What is a Niche, and Why Does It Matter?

If barbering is the industry as a whole, a niche is a specific category within it. Some barber niches are beard care, braiding, and short hairstyles. If it is a service that you can specialize in, it can be considered a barber niche.

Many barber shops are full-service, meaning that they offer all (or most) barbering services. Customers can come to such a shop and request just about any service. Sometimes, these services will be performed by individual specialists operating under the same roof. Other times, they are all done by the same barber.

To become truly great at a particular service and its related techniques, it’s often necessary to narrow your focus.

Even if you can offer all services as a single barber, niching down allows you to provide patrons with specialized care. This can help you establish a noteworthy reputation and lead to increased profit.

In addition to providing you and your barber shop with a direction–which plays a major role in your ability to grow your business–finding a barber niche helps potential customers identify your shop as somewhere that suits their needs and preferences.

If, for example, they are searching for a barber who specializes in beard care and maintenance, they will seek out an expert in that niche and become patrons of that shop.

A young client gets his hair cut by a barber in a kid's barbering niche.

How to Find Your Barber Niche

So, how do you find your barber niche? It’s a question easier asked than answered, but there are a handful of things to think about and do if you are interested in niching down.

  • Embrace your interests. Even if you’re really good at something, if you don’t enjoy it, you are unlikely to pursue it and stick with it long-term. Focusing on your interests and allowing them to guide your process of finding a niche is often the best route.
  • Focus on solutions. While a barber niche can grant you access to a specific audience, it only works if your niche is something people actually want or need. When considering your options, ask yourself if you are providing a solution to your potential customer’s problems. In other words, your niche needs a real, tangible audience.
  • Be flexible, especially at first. It’s possible you won’t find your ideal niche fit on the first try, so be open to experimenting until the right niche comes along and you click.
  • Take a look at your competitors. You can gather significant insight from what they are doing. Should you follow in their footsteps (but better) or fill a niche that they are omitting?
  • Assess your niche after some time. If you think you’ve found the barber niche that’s right for you, evaluate it after a bit of time. Are you making money? Are you reaching your target audience? Learn from your successes and failures. Then, be willing to adjust.

Establish Yourself Within Your Niche

Once you have confidently nailed down your barber niche, it’s time to establish yourself as an expert within it and reach your target audience. Part of this equation is simply performing your niche services with exceptional results and allowing that to speak for itself.

Word-of-mouth advertising is still a powerful tool for barbers, especially if you are appealing to a specific corner of the market.

Speaking of marketing, you will want to update your digital and physical brand identities to match your new niche. This step is integral to alerting your current customers of your specialty and reaching new clients who are searching for the service you now specialize in.

You may want to run a dedicated marketing campaign via your social media platforms and email list to spread the word.

Finally, stick with it. If your barber niche is showing promise, a touch of persistence will go a long way. Building a reputation takes time, and if you consistently create excellence within your niche, people will take notice. It’s just a matter of time.

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