There are all sorts of reasons to consider limiting your marketing focus. In the healthcare field, it’s especially uncommon for practitioners to choose a niche… but that means there are many opportunities to stand out in a sea of competitors.
If you are looking for ideas on how to reach patients more easily and create a distinct online presence, you can start by focusing on a particular medical condition.
Why Does Niching Work?
A niche is a very specific business focus that allows you to reach your Ideal Patients more easily. By designing a very specific solution, you can differentiate from practitioners in your industry. Niching is one way to develop a marketing strategy that reaches customers effectively and moves your business toward your ultimate business goals.
Once you choose one particular area of focus, your practice will stand out in a crowded market.
There are many ways to develop a specialization, which I talk about in my Triple Niche article.
29 Medical Conditions that Make Excellent Niche Practices
Patients who suffer from a particular condition are often desperate to get relief, but few practitioners specialize in these particular areas. Consider zeroing in on a health condition for which you have the passion, expertise, and training to solve.
In order to pick the right niche for your practice, you need to develop a strategy that combines several elements: your passion, specialized expertise, ability to get results, and a market that has the potential to generate a high profit and continual patient interest.
One way to do this is by choosing a particular health condition that is under-served by most practitioners, and for which you are committed to ease patients’ suffering.
Here are some of the most searched-for health conditions in which you could choose to specialize:
1. Sports medicine
Specialists in the sports medicine field come in many shapes and sizes. Consider niching in a specific area such as injury prevention, functional movement, athletic training, and nutrition review.
For an example of this, take a look at Victory Spine and Sport owned by Dustin Henry, DC in Camas, Washington. Dr. Henry specializes in biomechanical diagnosis and functional movement rehab.
2. Post-abdominal surgery services and support
Many patients don’t get the support they need after surgery, especially when it comes to the abdominal muscles.
For example, diastasis recti is a very common condition that can occur after pregnancy, where the abdominal muscles stay separated and form a gap. While this condition causes considerable discomfort and embarrassment, it is often overlooked by medical personnel (along with other common female conditions like breast pain, urinary incontinence, severe menstrual cramps, and interstitial cystitis). A practitioner who can provide non-invasive relief can be a life-saver.
Check out the Tummy Team in Camas, Washington, which focuses on Core Rehabilitation and Training for pregnancy and postpartum.
3. Thyroid and adrenal insufficiency expert
Another common condition is thyroid problems, both hypothyroid (under-active with decreased function and low hormone production) and hyperthyroid (over-active with over-production of hormone), as well as adrenal gland issues which can manifest in a number of very uncomfortable symptoms.
As a specialist who focuses on these conditions, you can offer valuable information to patients who are searching for someone who understands what they are experiencing.
4. Female hair thinning specialist
Male-pattern baldness is annoying; but female hair thinning and baldness can be earth-shattering. Consider offering treatment and support for conditions that cause this condition such as hormone evaluation, treatment options, and other ways to support patients who experience this.
5. Artificial food dye allergy and sensitivity
Did you know that synthetic food dyes (such as Red 40, Yellow 5, and Caramel Color) can seriously affect health and well-being? Read more in this Forbes article.
Joshua Howard of EcoLifeMaster wrote a fantastic article that describes the history and dangers of Red 40.
A niche in this area could focus on children, teens, and/or adults, and it can be combined with additional allergy testing and treatment.
6. Heavy metal toxicity
A toxic build-up in the body can have devastating effects. Unfortunately, conventional medicine does not adequately identify and treat toxicity, so this is a market area that has incredible opportunity.
One great example of this specialization is Dr. Louise Tolzmann, a naturopath who focuses on environmental medicine and naturopathic oncology. Consider offering toxin testing, treatment options, and dietary coaching if you choose this niche area.
7. Pediatric chiropractor
A niche focus can be very fulfilling and lucrative for practice owners. One way to specialize is by choosing a particular treating children, or you niche even further by focusing on sports injury prevention, posture correction, or childhood conditions.
I like the approach of Cecelia Mickles, DC, owner of Healthy Spine Chiropractic in Battle Ground, Washington. She specializes in pregnancy and pediatric care.
8. Candida and yeast infection specialist
This is an extremely common and devastating condition that is often overlooked. In addition to treatment for gut health methods, dietary evaluation, and other GI treatment options, you could also collaborate with a dietitian or infection expert to provide patients with even more value in curing the underlying disease.
Dr. Eric Bakker is a naturopathic physician in Hawke’s Bay, New Zealand who developed the “Candida Crusher” method. Check out his website here.
9. Post-traumatic event evaluation
Trauma is, unfortunately, an experience that occurs to most of us at some point in life. Although some survivors can overcome it without professional help, the majority of people don’t have access to family support or encouragement to seek help. This can lead to further trauma and self-destructive behavior.
Professional services you could offer in this specialization can including mental health therapy, chiropractic adjustments, and a post-trauma physical evaluation.
10. Natural childbirth
Many option exist for how to deliver your baby: You could choose to give birth in a hospital setting served by a midwife or doula (which is available even for high-risk surgical births; check out Doula My Soul). Patients could also choose a birth center, and even to have a home birth, which was my experience 3 times.
Your practice can also offer complementary services that meet the needs of both mother, baby, and other family members as they adjust to the transition.
11. Traumatic birth support
Birth can be easy, but it can also affect both the mother and infant for decades. Those who experience a traumatic birth often don’t receive help to properly recover.
Possible niche areas include pediatric and maternal massage, maternal and infant chiropractic treatment, and mental health support
12. Treatment for workplace injuries
An injury at work involves more than just the physical discomfort and pain. It can also lead to referred pain and musculoskeletal issues, emotional pain, isolation due to social exile, and financial impact from the time off work and recovery time.
A specialization in this niche can be especially valuable if you also choose an industry or job role that has a high rate of injury, such as nursing or construction work.
13. Treatment for nail disease
Nail disease is a sub-niche that could be a perfect fit if you have education and training in a field such as aesthetics, skincare, or minor surgery.
Consider offering emergency services for fingernail or toenail infections or other conditions. You could also provide a “safe salon evaluation” service to help estheticians develop a health and safety program.
14. Carpal tunnel syndrome
There are many root causes for carpal tunnel syndrome, which results in shooting pain and numbness in the hands and fingers. There are also a number of possible treatment methods—the most invasive being surgery.
If you offer non-invasive pain relief, this would be a very valuable niche for patients who want to avoid surgical and addictive pain relief options. Several types of massage therapy are especially helpful at relieving carpal tunnel pain. (Read 27 Niche Ideas for a Specialized Massage Therapy Business).
15. Gentle tattoo removal
It’s fairly easy to get a tattoo (from what I hear). But getting it removed is a whole different story.
There are so many ways to market a service like “gentle tattoo removal.” You could further niche it by limiting yourself to a certain demographic, or to a life change (such as starting a new white-collar career or going back to school). Or consider linking “tattoo removal” with another health condition or treatment method.
16. Podiatric treatment
If you are passionate about foot health, there are many possibilities for a niche: ingrown toenails, toenail trimming, podiatric massage, and spa therapy.
17. Diabetes prevention and treatment
Diabetes mellitus (including type 1, type 2, gestational, and pre-diabetes) is an extremely common and devastating condition. While the main source of treatment is with medication, there are a number of dietary, supplement, and lifestyle changes that can bring tremendous relief and even reverse the condition entirely (Source: Healthline).
Consider focusing your practice on a particular disease, such as diabetes. You can niche even further by zooming in on certain demographic, interests, and other conditions in order to create a marketing strategy that speaks to the patients who can benefit from your expertise.
18. Migraine headaches
Headaches can be annoying, or they can be totally paralyzing. By specializing in migraine headaches, cluster headaches, and other types of “invisible pain” conditions, you could provide tremendous relief. Niche even further by selecting a demographic such as children, youth, elderly, etc.
19. Postpartum vaginal and anal dysplasia
While not exactly easy to talk about, there are some conditions that occur after birth, surgery, and in traumatic situations such as rape. By specializing in this one body area and condition, you could craft a compelling marketing message that reassures patients and establishes trust for a situation that is horrifying, embarrassing, and extremely private.
20. Acne and eczema conditions
Skin conditions are yet another category of extremely common problems.
If you have developed a unique or specialized way to treat cystic acne, eczema, or other dermatological conditions, then make sure to market your business by focusing on that need.
21. GI conditions
Experts who can successfully treat gastrointestinal conditions like IBS (Irritable Bowel Disease) and other idiopathic digestive conditions have a unique opportunity to support patients who feel unheard by conventional medical doctors. Considering using your success in one narrow health area, and use it in marketing material to explain why your techniques work and what it looks like to experience relief.
One such expert is Jenna Rayachoti, ND in Seattle, Washington, who focuses on gut health for women.
22. Breast pain, cyst, and inflammation
Another extraordinary common problem faced by nearly all women (and also significant for men) is breast pain. Very few patients seek treatment unless they experience a more serious symptom, so this is a significant problem area.
Consider niching your practice focus on one body part or system, such as breast pain or a treatment option that works especially well for your patients.
23. Fibromyalgia and hidden pain
Diseases with “hidden pain” are among the most difficult to treat—not because there aren’t effective treatment options, but because patients tend to feel disconnected from their practitioner and unable to share what is really bothering them.
Fibromyalgia is one such condition, and many natural health remedies and “gentle massage” treatments can do wonders to reduce the discomfort. A massage therapist, chiropractor, naturopath, or other practitioner who provides “gentle treatment” for a hidden pain condition would really stand out in a crowded market.
24. Hormonal imbalance specialty
Optimizing the body’s hormones can help avoid cancer and other diseases, yet many adults struggle with hormone related conditions.
25. Menopause transition expert
Every woman eventually goes through menopause, and all of them want to reduce the discomfort and unpleasant symptoms that can occur.
If you love to help women over the age of 40, then consider specializing in physical and emotional support, natural treatment options, and other tailor-made services that support the needs of women experiencing this life transition.
26. Anxiety and depression support
Mental health support encompasses a wide variety of diagnoses and treatment options.
To find a niche that fits you, consider choosing a specific therapy, modality, demographic category, or related health condition. What kind of treatment do you offer? Could you guide patients though a particular challenge, such as “anxiety for school-age girls ages 5 to 9” or “depression in teenage boys who hate sports”? The possibilities are endless; and the more specifically you can describe the problem the better you’ll be able to connect with Ideal Patients.
One example is D’Auna Barton, LMFTA (Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist Associate) with Integrity Counseling Center in Vancouver, Washington. D’Auna offers therapy for Teen Girls with Self-Sabotage & Self-Confidence Challenges.
27. Seasonal allergies
Ugh, the pollen is flying! Are you an expert in helping patients to develop a stronger immune system, or to deal with the symptoms that make it difficult to breathe?
There are many ways to specialize a condition such as “allergies,” depending on which target patients you want to help.
28. Sinus infections and respiratory conditions
This niche area is similar to allergies, but consider the many breathing and sinus issues that can plague patients.
What can you do to provide a specialized treatment or combination of services to relieve their pain and suffering? The more specific your focus, the better you’ll be able to connect with patients who will most benefit from what you do.
29. Domestic pet services
This isn’t a condition, necessarily; but it’s a category that can provide a lot of fresh ideas for how to niche your business.
If you’re a chiropractor, you could also obtain further training and offer both human and animal chiropractic. Bek Jarzombek, DC does this in her practice, Giddyup Chiropractic in San Diego, California.
Or if you’re a dog trainer with a passion for conditions like diabetes, seizures, migraines, and AFib (atrial fibrillation), you could offer Medical Dog Alert training as Mary McNeight does with Service Dog Academy.
Consider any interests or hobbies that you and your Ideal Patient share; for example, you could incorporate your affinity for dogs, cats, or other pets into your marketing message.
As you can see, there are a multitude of ways to create a practice specialization. If you are wondering how to design the right niche for your practice, let’s talk. Find out more here.
Grace LaConte is a business consultant, writer, workplace equity strategist, and the founder of LaConte Consulting. Her risk management tools are used around the globe, and she has successfully reversed toxic work environments for clients in the healthcare and non-profit fields. Grace specializes in lactation law compliance & policy development, reducing staff turnover after maternity leave, and creating a participatory work culture.