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Create a Moat, Not Just a Niche, to Ensure Long-Term Success with Corey Hiben

May 02, 2023

Are you finding yourself worried about the competition out there? Maybe someone opened the same type of clinic just down the road from you. Or you’re finding yourself up against physical therapists or personal trainers. Or maybe it’s just that you are working too broadly and you are being buried system under system!

 Well, I had a fantastic sit down with OT, business, and marketing expert Corey Hiben and he spoke about how to create a moat, not just a niche to ensure long-term success for your business. He is going to share 3 key factors to building your moat and how to bring that to your niche to set yourself apart from the competition.

 Let’s dive in!

Corey’s Background and How He Gets Paid:

First, I want to share a little about Corey’s background and how he found himself in the OT entrepreneur world.

An unfortunate childhood event led Corey to study exercise science and become a personal trainer. Wanting to learn more, Corey became an OT. After graduating Corey found his niche in hand therapy.

While working with a hand surgeon, and feeling the burden of the insurance-based model of care, became extremely burnt out. This burnout turned into researching a new path of skills– marketing, website, and recently podcasting.

Corey has 3 main pillars of business and income. These are his marketing agency, website, and podcast, The Health Hustle. He is also very involved in community building in Austin, TX. His goal is to bring together other healthcare professionals (Chiropractors, trainers, doctors, OT, PT, etc).

When he moved to Austin, there was a large healthcare niche, but nothing to bring them together as a community. Corey has built his community to almost 600 members!

  •  Income, impact and goals: Corey is pushing toward 10K. After a yearly review Corey found 10K to be his goal for the coming year (members, podcast listeners, newsletter subscribers, income, etc). When asked about ROI, Corey had the best answer– that ROI does not always have to be a monetary value! He feels the most ROI in the intangibles in his community and with his members. Creating the weaving of webs and similarities has been his biggest ROI.

Now time to jump into the meat and potatoes– how to focus on creating your moat and protecting yourself and your business.

How to Create Your Moat

In order to find and build your moat, you have to draw yourself back to the micro level of finding out what people want and how to give it to them. Corey has 3 main factors for finding a good niche to ensure long-term success:

  1. What are you interested in? Starting with interest is crucial because if you're not genuinely interested in something, it's unlikely to succeed in the long term.
  2. What is your skillset(s)? You don’t have to be a master of your skills, but you do need to be a few steps ahead of the people you want to help in order to provide what they need.
  3. What is the market demand like? Market demand is very important, and you can gauge this by observing trends and seeing if there is an audience interested in your topic. In our current day of social media, this can be tough if you are searching to build your moat but don’t use social media as part of market research. So what do you do?

There is true value in conversations and listening to the words and language used by your target audience. Corey had a client who had conversations with at least five people they wanted to work with and to record these conversations to understand the verbiage used, challenges, fears, goals, and ambitions of their target audience.

Some food for thought: Having conversations and active listening can be more effective than just relying on social media because you can get a better understanding of the right audience and their needs, rather than getting feedback from people outside your target audience that won’t serve you.

When these 3 elements align, you have found a niche or "moat" that sets you apart from others and gives you an advantage in the marketplace. I hope you are ready to go build your moat and ensure your long-term success! To get the full rundown of our convo and learn even more tangible and super beneficial tips from Corey, be sure to listen to the full episode here!