In the last post, we chatted about what is a successful blog. Today its Niches.
So first up before you go domain name hunting think about what you want to write about. You may have this all figured out already or you may not have a clue what you want to write about. It’s ok, you will figure it out. Your chosen subject can be about can be anything you want.
But the secret, if you want a successful blog that can earn you money, is to write about something you are passionate about, that you have lots of knowledge about and you can easily think up 50+ blog posts. Even if you only post once a week that’s only roughly a year worth of posts and keep in mind that earning money from your blog doesn’t quite happen overnight.
If you’re not passionate about your subject it will show in your writing and you will fast lose interest in the subject and then your blog will suffer. Also if you don’t know lots about your subject it will also show in your writing. Readers will be able to tell you are faking it and they will not return.
You don’t have to be the Einstein of your niche, though. So many potential bloggers think they can’t write about a subject as they don’t know every single thing about it, that they haven’t studied it for years or that they haven’t got awards on the subject. You don’t have to have the awards etc, you just need to know more than the next person.
The beauty of writing about things you are passionate about is that you will naturally know more about the subject than most people.
If you’re stuck on choosing your niche to make a list of what excites you. Write everything down from big things to little things that you think don’t matter there a subject you can talk about for hours and hours long after everyone’s eyes have glazed over? Write it down.
What is the thing or if you are really lucky, things, that people come to you for advice and help on? Maybe you have had training in something that you can pass on to others.
Is your lifestyle inspirational? It doesn’t have to be all white linen and chandeliers kind of lifestyle. Maybe you are known as THE person for recycling and know all the ins and outs of it. Or maybe you home-school your children.
If you’re struggling with any of the above you’re not alone, I don’t think I could name half those things about me. Ask friends and family what they think you’re good at, passionate about, etc. You may think that being able to knit one-handed whilst cooking a four-course meal isn’t that difficult and find it a breeze, but that’s because you can do it. So asking friends and family will help as they will give you ideas you may not have thought of before.
And don’t think that you can’t do a niche because it has been done before. Instead, think how can you make it unique to you. What else could you bring to it?
Once you have a subject in mind, ideally we need to narrow it down to a niche. Why? Well, if we take the subject pets as an example it covers a lot of different things. This might sound good and sounds like you can blog about anything and everything to do with pets, which you can but there is a but. What you should be aiming at is lots of visitors that return again and again to your blog. It’s probably best with an example.
Site A – blogs about pets. Having such a wide subject means they blog one week about dogs, the following week about cats. They blog about different things from looking after a dog to what to feed a, etc.
Site B – blogs about cats. They don’t blog about any other pet. Each week there are new posts about cats. Feeding cats, looking after, etc.
I come along and want to know how to look after a new kitten, particularly bathing it. I go to site A. I see lots of posts and get excited. They have some info about kittens. But there are posts about dogs which I don’t need. I don’t sign up to their newsletter as I don’t want posts about dogs or fish. Turns out that they don’t have that much on cats.
I visit site B. Lots of posts about cats. They have posted about looking after a new kitten, they have also had other posts about kittens. This person really knows their stuff on kittens. I sign up to their newsletter.
When finding your niche, it’s better to be a big fish in a small pond rather than a small fish in a big pond, drowning!
Yes, little fish can still grow and make it in the big pond but they are stacking hurdles in their way.
Also if you not keen on narrowing it down to a niche that’s fine. It’s your blog, it’s your rules. The advice I offer in these posts is in the hope of lighting your spark to get you going and to help with your inspiration.
Here are all the posts in this series so you pick and choose where to go next
What is a Successful blog
Deciding your niche
Domain and hosting
Sorting your categories and tags
Picking a platform
Choosing a theme
Must haves for your blog
What will readers want to read
Writing for your reader
Photos and graphics