So I was talking with a friend about blogging a few days back.
She wanted to set up a blog, and monetize it but sounded a bit unsure about what she wanted to blog about.
And then it almost seemed like she wanted to be another “Linda Ikeji- type” blogger.
I’m not saying Linda Ikeji is not a great blogger, but there are way too many “Linda Ikeji-type” bloggers on this internet. Every time I see one of them, I want to scratch my eyes out.
If you’ve been following my site reviews, you know how much I hate any Linda-Ikeji-wannabe blogs.
Before I went HAM on her, she explained further and I realized she wasn’t trying to be Linda (Thank God). She just was having issues figuring out what niche she should blog in.
I once had a blog where I thought I was blogging in the self-development niche, but I was mostly just ranting about things that pissed me off and airing my personal views.
I thought I had found my niche, but I really had not.
From that experience, picking a niche to blog in is one of the most important things you can do when you’re starting a blog.
For 2 reasons:
I. Creating content in a particular niche overtime helps you become an expert in that niche.
And that’s one path to the $$$.
II. Again… the $$$. It’s easier to monetize your site when you blog in a niche.
Take affiliate marketing for example.
If you promote products tied to the niche you blog in, there’s a higher chance that your audience, who have come to see you as an expert, will trust your opinion and click through to purchase that product, thus earning you high commission. All because you “niched” down and built authority in a niche.
So yes, blogging in a niche is way better than blogging randomly… but how do you find your niche?
That’s what this post right here is about…
3 Steps To Finding A Niche For Your Blog
Now, before we get down to the nitty gritty, here’s a bit of interesting history (or maybe not).
The word “niche” originates from the Frrench word “nicher” which means to make a nest, and the French word “nicher” originates from the Latin word “nidus” which means nest.
Either way, it’s all about making a nest.
A nest is usually what birds make where they keep their young and feed them.
So a niche is a nest?
Well, in my opinion, yeah, a bit like that… except with more “senrenre”.
I think it’s a bit like a nest, because a niche blog is where people who want the solution to a specific kind of problem go to get answers… sorta like the baby birds getting fed with the solution to their hunger by chilling in the nest.
But a niche is much more than that. A niche is the point of intersection between what you have to offer and the needs of the target audience.
That’s basically it. It’s what you find when what you have to offer intersects with the needs of your target audience.
And there are 3 steps to find a niche for your blog.
Step #1: Find your Passion
If somebody called you on stage to give a talk, and you had to talk for a week straight on a particular topic, what would that be?
What could you talk about for years without stopping, taking a break or getting bored?
What are you passionate about?
You need to find it, and create a blog around that. To find this, list out your hobbies, interests, and obsessions. Write down things you love doing and cannot absolutely live without.
This list is where you should begin to find what you’re passionate about.
Whatever you blog about should be something you can see yourself still writing on for the next 5, 10 years.
Yes, you read that right.
If you think you’ve found something you’re passionate about, try coming up with 10 – 15 blog post topics in that area. If you can’t do that, you might want to rethink that.
This is a very important step cos if you blog about something you’re not passionate about, you won’t give it your best, and your audience will know it.
Step #2: Find A Need
Remember what I said earlier?
A niche is where your passion meets a need.
If your passion doesn’t meet a need, it’s not a niche. I mean, you can be passionate about Teletubbies, but if you can’t connect that with a need, it’s not a niche.
So how do you find a need?
Well, one method is to do keyword research. You take keywords about your passion and use Google Keyword Planner to see how many search queries those words get and what terms are being used. You’d generally see high search volumes wherever there is a need.
Another method is to figure out who your target audience is.
Talk to them, and get to know them, their desires, and problems. Then, put yourself in their shoes, and see how you can create content to meet their need. I have used this approach mainly on this blog.
When you have found your passion and found a need that your passion can fulfill, next you have to…
Step #3: Follow The Smell of Money
I know. Funny, but true.
Sometimes just because your passion meets a need, doesn’t mean that’s a niche you should get into.
Why do I say this?
Because not every niche is profitable.
Many a blogger has made the mistake of diving into a niche, and creating content without considering the possibility of monetization.
Now if you’re just blogging for fun, and don’t plan on making money from your blog ever, then you can do that.
But if you treat your blog as a business, you cannot afford to spend a shit load of time creating content in a particular niche only to find out there’s no way to make money from it.
This is why you need to think about whether a niche is profitable before you dive into it.
Let’s look at this example:
Let’s say you’re passionate about sewing, and all you blog about are basically different types of threads, needle sizes etcetera shmetcetera and then decide to sell thread on your site. While you might get a target audience, I doubt they’d be willing to buy thread from you because they’re going to be mostly tailors who already have their suppliers and they already have thread.
If, on the other hand, you focus on the need for knowledge on how to become a tailor and you create content around that niche telling your audience what they need to know to become one, they’d be more likely to buy a “Become A Tailor” Guide if you offered it to them.
Both of them are niches within the tailoring/ fashion industry. One is profitable. One is not.
When you’re picking your niche, you need to put yourself in the shoes of your target audience and think like they would. If you can’t see a reason why they should buy anything from you, they won’t either.
Another good way to also figure out the profitability of a niche is to check out the competition. Google keywords you want to craft posts around and see how many sponsored ads show up on the first page of the search engine result page.
The more sponsored ads there are, the more profitable the niche is.
Now, you’re probably thinking: “But if there’s a lot of competition, doesn’t that mean I should try a different niche?”
No. It doesn’t. Competition shows you where the money is and what people are interested in.
And take it from me (and my past experience with blogging around things people weren’t interested in), you’re better off finding what people already want, and blogging about that.
There you have it. Go find your niche, read this post and start blogging.
Keeping it 500,
Author: Tomi Joshua
Tomi is a case.
A bit brash, at first blush. But ultimately, he means well. There are very few things he won’t say or do in the presence of tolerant company (especially when it could make for a good story later).
Tomi is a Doctor, writer, certified inbound marketer (Shout Out to HubSpot), Digital Hustler, and online business addict.
He is most likely to be found dancing to the beat of his own drum, even in accapella.