Writing in your specific niche is like running the only bakery in town – people will come to you for the specific goods that you, and only you, provide. Finding that one category that you’re an expert in, that you enjoy, and that not every Joe and his dog’s fleas is knowledgable in, can mean the difference between slaving through content mills or clients knocking on your door.
Offering your copywriting services in a field that few people are experts in, but that many people want, has two effects: work will be plentiful, and pay will be good.
For some people, determining their niche is easy. Maybe their studies or work experience lend themselves to a no-brainer, high-demand niche, or they’ve found a unique angle on their hobby.
But what about writers whose niche doesn’t present itself on a silver platter? You may be trying to get away from the subject you’re an expert in through your work or study experiences. Or you may believe your skills to be too vague or low to make a living off them.
If you belong to this group, like I did, don’t fret. There’s this neat technique that can help you out: brainstorming. Here’s what you do, one step at a time.
1. Brainstorm Niche Categories Unique to You
Write down anything and everything that applies to you on the following topics:
– Field(s) of Study / Training
– Work Experience
– Special Skills
Is there any category in there that you’d like to expand your knowledge or involvement in, beyond the present degree? Are there two combinable items on these lists that jump out at you immediately? If so, you may already have found your niche. If not, here’s how you continue.
2. Combine the Categories
Write every category from your lists on a small index card. Then start shuffling and pairing them up. Consider at each pair carefully. Don’t dismiss crazy sounding combinations off-hand – those may be the ones that nobody else has thought of, but that many people are interested in.
3. Brainstorm Titles / Topics for your Pairings
If you find a pair that sounds likely, brainstorm at least ten titles for posts or articles for this combination. If finding subjects to write about for this pairing feels like finding a waterhole in the desert, you may want to try a different combo. But if you can come up with them in record time, you may have your winner.
If you still feel like brainstorming hasn’t helped you determine a niche, don’t fret. Having a general idea of your writing interests may be enough to get you started. Keep an eye out for the next post, Do You Need a Niche as a Freelance Copywriter, in which I discuss the circumstances under which you may not need to find your niche from the very beginning – in time, it may find you.
How did you determine your niche? Do you believe it’s a vital requirement from the beginning to be successful? I’d love to hear about your experiences in the comments.