If I asked you to name the best swimmer in the world, who would you pick?
Like any sane person, your mind probably jumped immediately to Michael Phelps. After all, he’s not only the most decorated international swimmer of all time, but the most decorated Olympian of any kind.
But is he actually the best?
Take a closer look at his finishing results and a somewhat foggier story begins to emerge.
While Phelps was flat out dominant in some categories of races, he failed to ever medal in some, and chose not to compete in others.
Phelps might be the hands-down best in the world at the 200m butterfly but he’s not even in the conversation for the 400m freestyle, in which his best international placement was 18th.
And this is all in the pool. What about open-water endurance swimming? Is Phelps the best in that category?
The reality is that depending on your worldview and the boundaries and criteria you use to judge a given pursuit, there are many potential Bests in the World.
For us as creators, this is an exciting proposition.
It means that instead of competing against every other podcast in the world, or even every other podcast in your niche, you can choose to narrow down the focus and thus thin out your competition.
Take Louis Grenier, of the popular podcast Everyone Hates Marketers.
When Louis was looking to add a weekly newsletter to his offerings, he could have opted to keep the topic broadly focused on marketing as a whole.
Instead, he chose to focus on one specific subset of marketing, differentiation, and own the topic outright.
Instead of being one marketing newsletter among many, Louis’ Stand The F*ck Out Newsletter is the best (and only) newsletter for people looking to do just that.
To gain traction with our shows, our job is to narrow the focus of our topic and our intended audience down far enough to where we can compete to become the very best option in the world for those people.
So what’s it going to be for you? Who can you serve and how can you serve them better than anyone else in the world?