Ah, the niche. The bloggers crown jewel. You’ve finally settled on one and can’t wait to start writing, pinning and tweeting. But are you? Have you really thought it out? You’re an expert. You love it. You can’t wait to share it with people. Perfect. At the end of the first week, you’re exhausted, you’ve published only one post and you’re second-guessing your choice. Why? You thought about the niche, but you didn’t think about what blogging to the niche meant.
I’ll be honest, I thought about a recipe blog. Then I thought about making all that food, documenting the steps and photographing it. Way too much work. Blogging is supposed to be fun and easy. Not my niche. I settled on something easy, telling other people’s stories. The more involved I get, the more work it becomes. Will I change my niche? No. But will I help you understand what you should think about.
I provide a weekly spotlight about a family which includes their favorite recipe. Initially, it was easy. I chose a family member and it took no time at all. The more involved I get, the more work it becomes. Interview the family, research the special circumstance in their life, writing about them, troll their Facebook page and the internet for photos and sometimes I cook their recipe so I can have a picture. And to taste it – I don’t want to post a crappy recipe. Total time – at least 3 hours per post.
If I had been a recipe blogger? Well, I have to cook meals anyway, right? No time needed there. I would simply have to photograph the food, write down the recipe and, viola, I have a blog! Total time – less than 3 hours per post. Think long and hard about your niche, the biggest thing you will need is time. How much do you need and do you have it available?
What’s Your Niche? – Writing about flip flops? Awesome! Live in an igloo? In Alaska? And you’ve never worn flip flops? Think again. Write about something you know and care about. Otherwise, it becomes a chore and you’ll hate it.
Get Organized – Each niche involves something different, start with a list. What are you trying to communicate? How will you present it? Do you need people
to assist you? Will you have to research? What exactly will you need to publish a worthy post? This list will help you determine how much work will be involved.
Photos – Every blog needs complementary photos. If you’re not going to take the pictures yourself, you’ll need to search the web for a royalty-free site(s) from which you can download your photos. If you are going to take them yourself, this will take time and equipment. Figure it out up front.
Research – Do you know everything you need to know? Is there anyone you should talk to? Something you should read? If it’s not something that you can do on your own, consider what you’ll need to do publish the post. If you need to call the former Czar of Russia to get a complete story, it’s probably not gonna happen. You should provide relevant, accurate, timely information – make sure you can.
Write a Sample Post – Go ahead, try it. Write your first post. How did it feel? Do you care about it? Are you satisfied? Is it something you want to share? If not, why? Hate the content? Fingers hurt from typing? Find out why. Fix it. If it’s the content, now’s the time. You haven’t published it, you haven’t signed up for a site name and you haven’t made a guest appearance on the Ellen Show. You’re safe.
Naming Your Blog – You will be told that your blog name is important. It is. Decided to write about chicken but you named your site The Fancy Cupcake? It’s really sweet that your husband calls you cupcake and you wanted to honor your relationship, but you’re going to draw the wrong crowd. I’d go with The Fancy Chicken, just sayin’. Who am I to talk? My blog name is The Missing Niche. Learn from me.
Take your time. Think about it, all of it. There are so many resources available, so many tips and so many bloggers. Find a few, look to them for guidance, what’s made them so successful? Read their tutorials and their tips, watch their social media pages. Find someone with a similar niche. Join groups. Eventually you’ll find your way, I did. I think.
About the Author: Karen Solomon is a working mom and blogger who began writing in
September 2013. When not digital scrapbooking or embarrassing her children, she is trying to give exposure to diseases, disorders and special family circumstances to raise awareness and understanding. You can find Karen on her blog The Missing Niche, or on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, or Google+. She was also interviewed by Blog Talk Radio HERE.