Defining Your Niche with River Nice

Brian chats with River Nice, the owner and financial planner of Be Intentional Financial. River’s company seeks to reduce the harm done by capitalism to transgender and queer individuals and families by providing education, tools, advice, and a place to talk about money.

Known as the anticapitalist financial planner, River shares how they found their niche by playing to their strengths and reaching out to their community. They also discuss how running a mission-driven business can serve both your community and yourself.

Episode Highlights

Mission-Driven Businesses serve your community and yourself.

River describes a mission-driven business as a company that can project the founder into success but isn’t ultimately about making money. River attributes the quick success of their own mission-driven business, Be Intentional Financial, to following their values and being honest.

“It is both doing something that’s not just about making money but also trying to make money,” River said. “My mission is to serve primarily the trans community, and that includes me, so it’s serving my clients and my community. But it’s also making sure that I can have my best life.”

Successful businesses play to your strengths.

River started their career in the tech industry but felt disenchanted with the industry after the election of President Trump. At the same time, they had a partner who was in debt from her gender transition. River sat down with their partner to help her create a budget, understand her credit card interest rates, and put together a timeline, which gave her partner an immediate sense of relief.

“She was like, ‘River, this is your thing. You need to help trans people with money,’” River said.

River had never thought they could have inherent strengths that others do not have, so they told anybody who would listen: “I’m going to help trans people with their money.”

River got their start in financial services at Ameriprise Financial. Then, in 2019, they quit their job, came out as transgender, and launched Be Intentional Financial. River said it’s been an amazing journey.

“I am just so happy on a day-to-day basis. Who knew life could be this good?” River said. “It feels a little like bragging, but that’s the point, right? The point of this podcast is that life can be this good, and you can do it, too.”

Define your niche. Then cater to it.

Even with the intent to primarily serve the transgender community, River recognized that still included an incredibly diverse group of people. They knew they had to get even more specific to reach an audience tailored to their own skills and knowledge.

River’s niche typically includes people in their 20s and 30s who have come into money for the first time, whether that’s having a job that provides an income more than what they need to just survive or getting an unexpected chunk of money through inheritance or divorce.

Once River defined their niche, they adapted their services to meet their target client’s needs. One of those needs is making people in the transgender community feel empowered by their newfound financial prosperity, rather than “almost a survivor’s guilt,” River said.

“For people who come from marginalized backgrounds to suddenly have more than they need to survive, they feel so bad that they are okay now even though the rest of the community is struggling,” River said. “So being able to just to talk about that and say, ‘Do not cut yourself off. Do not sabotage yourself.’”

Resources + Links

About Brian and the Mission Driven Business Podcast 

Brian Thompson, JD/CFP, is a tax attorney and certified financial planner who specializes in providing comprehensive financial planning to LGBTQ+ entrepreneurs who run mission-driven businesses. The Mission Driven Business podcast was born out of his passion for helping social entrepreneurs create businesses with purpose and profit.

On the podcast, Brian talks with diverse entrepreneurs and the people who support them. Listeners hear stories of experiences, strength, and hope and get practical advice to help them build businesses that might just change the world, too.