Niche Blogging vs. Broad Market Blogging
These days, everyone is blogging, from Grandma Moses (okay I know she’s no longer with us but if she were she’d have a blog) to your local baker to The Real Housewives. Blogging has become a primary source for sharing information be it personal or business related. When I first heard of blogging, I admit, I was a bit confused. Back in the 90’s blogging started out as a way to record your personal thoughts about, well, almost anything. I couldn’t figure out why would anyone want to read about what I was doing during my day. I know I have an interesting life, but really, did I want to share in an open forum that I passed out at my gentle dentistry office after receiving too much sedation?
But blogging has evolved, and so have my thoughts on it. Today, blogging has become one of the best ways to market a brand, product, business or person. It’s an invaluable and inexpensive way to market to a wide audience, and best of all, it is instantly delivered (once you write it of course and hit that send button.) Today, no one is really questioning whether they should blog rather they’re asking themselves, what to blog about. And that brings me to the next point. Niche blogging versus broad market blogging.
What is niche blogging
Niche blogging is a blog that focuses on a specific subject or topic. The niche can be very tight and focused on one subject only, such as a blog about staplers (hey I bet if I conducted a search for this I’d find one, or two) or you could cast the niche net a bit wider for say the same type of person, like moms that have boys. While the mom blog would be a bit broader in nature because you could write about things that affect your sons, making the topics a bit more open, it’s still considered niche blogging, as all the people that read it will have that aspect of their lives in common. That’s not to be confused with a general broad market blog – those will talk about an expansive array of topics and be much less focused, although they have large population bases, like The Huffington Post blogs. They have posts about everything from issues that affect us when we are over 50 years old, to news topics, to movies to the best car to buy and such. Pretty broad range, you see? Now before you get all excited thinking that’s the way to go and you are the next HP, let’s actually look at why it might be better to think niche.
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Niche blogging builds credibility
Everyone is an expert on something so share it with the world, and once you do, they’ll know you are the authority on your topic. That in and of itself will attract people to your blog when they have questions in a certain area or when they want to be in the loop about the subject. If you know everything there is to know about nail polish, then nail polish enthusiasts will bookmark your blog and follow it, solidifying your expertise in that particular niche market and building readership. Some folks log on to their favorite blogs daily, or even several times a day. That is what you’re going for when you blog this way.
Another way your niche blog can build credibility is through structure. You look way more professional and polished with a well thought out, well planned, laser focused blog. You know what to talk about, and are not all over the place. Imagine (it’s not hard to) if your favorite television program suddenly switched formats or killed everyone off and became something else entirely from week to week. Would you keep watching it? Probably not, and you’d most likely think someone out there or maybe everyone involved in making the show had lost it. Ratings would drop, and maybe the show would even be cancelled.
It’s a comfort to most people to have some sort of routine, we’re just wired this way,and hopefully this includes waking up in the morning and reading your blog. I’m not saying be boring and never throw in some surprises, just keep it focused. Readers want to know what they will get, and with a well prepared and thought out niche blog, they will.
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Niche blogging builds kinship
We all want to feel a part of something. One of the best parts about blogging is that it opens up a dialogue and forum to share information and feedback between you and your reader, as well as bringing your readers together with each other. Niche blogging brings you as the blogger to those that are interested in your subject together, building an online family for sharing ideas and information.
Now imagine if this information is very on point for everyone that comes to the blog. If so many people can relate to it, it grows and becomes, organically, much more than just your blog. You know when you visit your favorite coffee house and you see all the cronies sitting around having their morning talk, or their afternoon debate – that is what your niche blog becomes to your community of readers.
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Niche blogs are easier to rank
Okay, okay, I know that is a bold statement to make, but think about it. Unless you are a Rockefeller and can afford to buy yourself a top ranking or employ someone to constantly monitor this for you and get you up there, you’re going to have issues competing with the big boys and girls. Having a niche blog keeps the content focused, concentrating on definitive points and information, so the chances of optimization for your blog within the rankings grows as you become more popular. Part of SEO (search engine optimization) is dependent on visitors searching for and landing on your site. The more popular you become with your readers, the more they bring up your blog online, the easier it will be for others to find you, because when they search on your topic, your page will be higher on the list of rankings.
Search engine optimization can make your head spin, and you may or may not understands it all that well, plus, it can be pretty fluid. Take some time to learn even a bit if you’re not that well versed, so you can make adjustments to your blog as needed and attract that niche group. You don’t have to be the expert here, but get a bit dangerous with the know-how on this so you can understand how to build loyalty. Why you say, because it is really going to help you on the next point, which is…
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Its easier to make money with niche blogging
It is….really. Here’s why. A lot of new bloggers have the tendency to think more is better, and of course I suppose we are taught that at an early age. Hence the credit card commercial (you know who I’m talking about) that is playing all the time these days with the guy sitting in a circle surrounded by first graders, asking them if they want more, and of course they do! But I digress, back to the point. Maybe most of the time more is more, but not when it comes to niche blog advertising, one very important and primary source of revenue generation for bloggers. Throwing ads for everything including the kitchen sink on your blog for blue suede shoe lovers won’t entice them to click through or buy. It will confuse them. On the other hand, ads for blue suede shoes, shoe cleaners, as well as socks will most likely be really appealing and successful for your blog, and that translates to dollars. Because if you can get them to click, or click and buy depending on the advertisers program, you make money. And your followers will trust you on all matters blue suede and be looking for socks to slip into those shoes, and they are on your blog anyhow at least every day so might as well buy from you, right? Now think about how that translates for you when you have really become a successful niche blogger with tons of followers. You get the picture.
Don’t forget, the same rule applies to affiliate marketing links. Don’t clutter your blog with every link out there. Concentrate on affiliates that enhance your site and make sense for your audience.
Lastly, when it comes to revenue, if you are going to sell anything on your site, make it relevant to the site itself. Don’t sell Aunt Betty’s caramel corn and your hand painted ashtrays on your niche blog for hair extensions. Capiche?
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What should you niche blog about?
Now that you know some of the reasons it may be better to concentrate on a niche market for your blog, you may be wracking your brain trying to think of posts to write. Before you do that, you need to know your niche, and understand it. So, keep reading, hopefully this will help you decide what niche blog to start.
Opinions here can vary, but I think it is best to blog about something you actually are an expert in or know lots about naturally. However, maybe you’re trying to get away from that “something” – maybe you are leaving a career and starting anew, or you have knowledge about a situation that was not necessarily pleasant in life and you want to move on from it. So what should you do then? I would pick a subject I really enjoy and am passionate about. Either way you go, you are likely to be comfortable with the subject matter, making it more fun to write your posts, and helping you interact with readers. Remember, you may be answering their questions or commenting back to them, you need to know what you’re talking about. Also, keep cool, you may not be an expert yet, but before long, with all the researching for your posts and all the writing and the interaction with your readership, you will be.
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It’s also important to try and set yourself apart from other niche blogging sites that may be similar. Of course, if you can think of a truly original niche blogging idea, that is great! But chances are, there may be some blogs on the same subject, or touching on similar areas as the one you want to start. Don’t get deterred, just do your research, and think of a perspective that will make you different so you stand out. If you were starting a brick and mortar business, you’d do exactly the same. Hey, just because there is already a hamburger joint in town doesn’t mean there isn’t room for another one – just try to be unique about yours.
As you can see there is a lot to think about when blogging if you want to be successful at it. But if you work hard and you focus on your unique niche, you’ll be enjoying your own little (or big!) niche in the blogging world.
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