09 Feb Specialization is Here
We recently received a full-color attractive 3 by 5 inch postcard from a Century 21 Realtor. Under his name was the tag line “Active Adult Community Specialist.” The card was of interest for two reasons: One, we happen to live in an active adult community but, more importantly, we were intrigued that a Realtor claimed to specialize in a particular real estate segment.
As many of you know, we edit and publish the annual Business Reference Guide. In order to get a lot of our information, we solicit business intermediaries who specialize in various different types of businesses or have experience with them. There are more industry specialists every year.
For example, there are more business brokers specializing in professional practices than we ever thought possible. A growing number specialize in medical and dental practices. Many have experience in specialties such as diagnostic imaging centers, dialysis centers, home health care (both care-giving, and supplies). Then there are the accounting firms, veterinary practices and even brokers who deal in law firms. The list goes on and on. In fact, I believe that specialization is where our business is headed.
Our 2012 Business Reference Guide has 725+ entries. No, there are not business brokers who specialize just in each, but many have had experience in selling many of them. And, certainly there will always be a need for the generalist. However, even the generalist can develop a specialty and have postcards, business cards, etc. printed to let the business community know that there are business brokers who specialize in selling their type of business.
We already know that food and drink related businesses are big sellers and may represent the largest specialty group in the business sales profession. Restaurant brokerage business brokers are available in every major city and even in smaller ones.
Why not pick a business industry that you have an interest in, hopefully some knowledge too, but just interest can work to start. The business has to lend itself to business brokerage. By that, I mean that there has to be a large enough segment of buyers so that selling these businesses can work, and be profitable. There is most likely only one elephant training school in the country, so electing to specialize in this business type would be quite limited.
After doing your home work and educating yourself in your chosen specialty, create a letter, postcard, email piece, etc to send, or contact owners of businesses in your new “specialty.” General business brokerage is primarily local, but in many specialties you can reach out further geographically. Also, if there is a state or local association related to what your new specialty is, call them and suggest you speak at a meeting on “selling your business,” or “pricing/valuing” you’re business; they’re both topics of interest to the owners of such businesses. Or submit a similar article to their industry publication(s).
If you’re doing ok and enjoy working with a lot of different businesses, there is no problem in continuing to do just that. On the other hand, if working in a specialty along with your general practice interests you, try it. There are a lot of reference sources available on the web; and if you know of a business broker who specializes in a similar business type, call them. Unless they’re next door, I’m sure they would be willing to help you.
Specialization in business brokerage is here!