This one here is for all my personal bloggers. I know, I know everyone is telling you, you need a niche and you’re thinking, “But I’m a personal blogger,” and I am here to tell you that it still matters! Most people don’t want to feel like they are being pushed into only talking about one topic but I assure you that when your blog tries to cater to everything and everyone, it essentially caters to no one.
Why do I know? Because I’ve been there! I remember sitting down to write my first blog manifesto and I had no idea what it is I was really doing here. I was just writing. Whatever I felt, whatever I thought, whatever I was inspired by or annoyed by and there was no real direction. And somehow I thought that warranted lifestyle. Let me tell you, if you are not posting about home décor and recipes and stuff about living, you do not have a lifestyle blog!
In either case, the best way that I have found to think about finding your niche is in comparison to a magazine. Magazines have a focus. There are culture magazines, music, home décor, gossip and much more. But within their focus or niche, there are a lot of different things that they can talk about. So Country Living or whatever it may be talks about sprucing up your place for spring, great recipes to try, the ultimate accessories, whatever the case may be. The bottom line here is that if you pick a good enough focus there are a myriad of things to write about.
I had to go backwards after I had posts on posts on posts and figure out what it was I was talking about already, which I realized was growth! Whether I am talking about relationships, spirituality, writing or business, it’s all about growth. That topic allows me the space to incorporate different things as I grow. Before I released Dear Love: A Love Letter to You, my first book, I didn’t write about relationships on the blog. Well not in a formal category. But my audience started to look for that material from me and so I was able to incorporate it without it coming from left field.
The reality that I need you to get is that you are probably writing about a re-occurring topic anyway. Honestly, I see it all the time with personal bloggers. There tends to be a theme within the personal essay/blogger world as well. You may write poetry about varying topics, but the theme is the poetry. I know that if I go to your site, I'm getting poetry about various topics. So it just helps if you package it for the reader to be able to put a grasp on it. I know, why do we all need labels and boxes to understand things? I don’t know, but that it’s just how we as people are better able to digest things. But understand that it doesn’t mean that you will be stuck writing about one thing forever.
When you sit down to think about what it is you really to talk about on your blog, it should be something that you can talk about for days and days. A topic that is something that you can come up with creative content around. And it’s okay that you’re a personal blogger. There are tons of personal bloggers with captivating content with a theme or niche. Just let go of thinking that niche is some type of dirty word or that it doesn’t apply to personal bloggers.
You also want to make sure that it gives you space. Sometimes if you decide on something too narrow you will run to the end of a short rope. For instance if you choose to write about red bowls only made on Thursdays in Canada. That is completely random, but you get my drift. Focus is a great thing but too much of a focus can definitely be limiting.
Most often as personal bloggers, we really end up writing to an audience that looks a lot like who we are. And that’s okay. Just because your work may cater to a specific group doesn’t mean that they are the only ones that will be able to enjoy it. I didn’t want to accept that my blog catered to African-American women between the ages of 24-35, but guess what? That’s exactly who it caters to partly because I fall in that demo! HA! So many of the shows I watch, political strife I am in an uproar about or whatever the case may be are the same things that people who read this blog are interested in. Never undervalue your audience. I mean come on … Hip Hop was derived from the streets of New York and now it influences THE WORLD! Think about that and know that it is okay to do your thing and cater to your audience!
In The Writer, The Brand course, I have you go through a few exercises to figure out what it is that you really want to write about. Definitely think about enrolling in the full-course to help focus and target your writing in a way to help expand its reach. The one thing the internet doesn’t need is another blog. So you should definitely find a way to stay authentic to you and choose a topic you’re really passionate about when deciding to add another blog to an already crowded lane!