Specialization in Crowded Markets

There are times when a certain market just feels right for you, but at the same time you realize your local market may not have room for yet another similar business. It’s happening frequently in the frozen yogurt world, especially in places like Southern California or New York City where you can hardly walk 2 blocks without seeing another froyo shop. As a result, many frozen yogurt companies have begun to innovate more with flavors and toppings, or even add in cafe offerings like sandwiches and smoothies.

But what about other industries, like hair salon franchises? How much variation can there really be in the world of affordable hair services? You might be surprised. SportClips is one salon franchise that has chosen to specialize with great success. Rather than trying to please everyone, their sports-themed salons cater to men and boys. And why not? Men and boys may not spend as much on a typical visit, but they also need trips to the salon much more frequently than most women. It’s much more noticeable if a man skips a haircut for several months than if a woman does the same. In tough financial times, women can even go years with minimal salon intervention – but men need haircuts to stay professional for work.

Blowout bars offer another highly specialized haircare service, and franchises are just now starting to spread across the country. Many women love the way a professional blowout leaves their hair, but they also don’t want to spend $60+/week at their normal salon getting it done. It’s expensive, and it can be difficult to make appointments quickly. Companies like BLO/OUT offer quick service, online reservations, and affordable prices for people who want salon-style hair on a more regular basis. Because blowout specialists don’t necessarily need the full skillset of a normal stylist, staff salaries are often less expensive, too.

Have you ever considered opting for a specialized franchise within a larger industry? Have you followed through? Feel free to share your experiences in the comments!

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