Blogging for Beginners: 4 Sneaky Tactis to Getting Into a Competitive Niche
[cerebro-content-area id=”cg8″]This is a paragraph that is only meant to be seen by Bryan Kramer[/cerebro-content-area]
Blogging for beginners will obviously be harder in a more competitive niche than less competitive niches, but that doesn’t mean you should not go big.
A lot of people will tell you to stay away from competitive blogging niches, to go into a market with little to none competition…
I say forget about that, I say go where your passion is or where the money is or ideally; both.
Yeah, both sounds good…
True, it is much easier to start a blog in a niche with little to none competition (nothing has dead competition nowadays, if it does, you might want to stay away), but I believe is being conservative, this is not believing in your online marketing skills, or learning skills if you have none of the previous.
Also, what if you simply want to create a blog for your existing company and you have no choice but to go into that competitive niche?
The fact is you can get into any market you want. It doesn’t matter if there are thousands of competitors or if you think you are a “nobody”.
Here are my 4 steps to sneak into a competitive market as a blogger.
1. Refine, But Don’t Strap Yourself
You need to have an extremely clear vision of what differentiates you from the rest, if someone asks how you differentiate from others; you have to be able to answer fast and without hesitation in a short sentence.
This is also called your USP (unique selling proposition) and is a classic marketing concept that applies to all companies and products, this isn’t anything new so it’s important that you understand it and use it.
You want to refine your market and find or create a niche that you can dominate and own.
So for example: Derek Halpern from SocialTriggers.com has an online marketing & business blog, but he differentiates himself by often talking about psychological factors that influence people’s buying decisions, keyword: Psychological.
Now here’s the tricky part; you don’t want to strap yourself into that refined niche, because our goal is to get into the overall market, in Derek’s example: Business & Marketing.
Notice how he most of the times simply speaks about overall business information; he is not always talking about specific psychological triggers that affect buyers decisions.
Moneydiver is also on the business & marketing space, more specifically online marketing and even more specifically audience segmentation.
I differentiate from others by explaining how to properly do audience targeting and segmentation to improve all different types of marketing efforts (blogging, social media, SEO, advertising, etc.).
As you can see by reading this post, I also blog about online marketing in general. You don’t want to strap yourself into a super specific niche that has little to no actual interest, you just want to leverage that expertise that you have to put a tag on yourself and enter a fancy party with a unique suit.
2. Leverage Your Startup Status
Authoritative bloggers in every competitive blogging niche have very limited time to actually interact with all of their readers and audience.
They usually schedule a specific time in the day to answer to as many questions on social media or via email as they can, but the bigger your community, the harder it is to engage with everyone.
Take Pat Flynn from smartpassiveincome.com for example; He gets hundreds of comments every time he posts an update on Facebook and he can only reply to as many as he can for the 10 to 15 minutes he schedules each day to engage with people.
He also has a daily podcast, askpat.com, where he answers questions submitted by his own readers, can you imagine the amount of questions he must get every day? And yet he has to pick one for every episode.
But you, being a rookie, have a smaller audience which means you can engage with much higher percentage of people that your renowned peers.
“I would rather have 1000 true fans than 100,000 unengaged listeners” – Kevin Kelly
This is an eye opening quote from a “real-life Chuck Norris” that you have to soak in about getting started. I recommend listening to this episode from Lewis Howes interviewing Kevin Kelly.
Putting it into actionable strategies: go out there and start asking your audience how they are doing, how can you help them, one by one, through twitter, blog comments, your email list, forums and every single place where people share their pains.
Go to your competitor’s social media channels and help those who couldn’t get an answer from the “celebrity”, with this not only do you get to help the person you answer to, but you help your competitor and you slightly start to network with them.
Make 1000 friends who can then become advocates of your blog, get them so involve with you that the first thing they do in the morning is check their phones for messages, tweets and emails from you.
3. Segment Your Audience
See what I was talking about on step 1?
Once you have those 1000 true fans, grab a magnifying glass and by looking at their specific interests inside your niche, put them into separate groups.
Then create content specifically for those groups or segments.
For example, let’s say you how a “how to blog” blog, and you identify that there’s a lot photographers, chefs and moms in your small true-fans audience. You can now share specific tips and tricks about blogging in those specific niches and these people will LOVE you for being so specific.
But how do you do it? I’ll give you 3 quick ways to do it:
- Use Twitter lists: You can put people into lists using Twitter. Create a list for every major audience segment in your audience and share specific content with them.
- Create a social media channel for every segment: I have 6 Twitter accounts that are directly related to Moneydiver, one for every segment or category inside online marketing. Mashable also does this, this is a step further than the above described tip that you may want to implement this slowly as your audience grows because its time consuming.
- Email lists: If you are building an email list with your blog (and you should) you can ask people what they like and then put them into separate lists based on their interests, then send emails related to their specific interest. This will improve “your everything” (seriously, conversion rates, traffic, engagement, brand love, etc.)
Hopefully you can see how audience segmentation or targeting is not something only big brands do and that you can apply it to accelerate your blog’s growth.
Yup, there’s a reason so many people recommends it and makes an emphasis on building connections.
It’s because it works…
“Is not what you know but who you know” and this is sadly true in life, everything is social, everything is influence, now obviously knowing everyone and knowing nothing will eventually sink you down.
Where I want to get with this is that once you have your differentiation factor, you can create unique value for your competitors in a unique way that hasn’t been offered to them yet and start climbing that networking lather.
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