When I first started to blog in 2010, I invited my friends to give me feedback. After the initial oohs and aahs the one thing that most of them pointed at was – that I was trying to write a whole blog about jewelry and accessories and if I was smart I would write about other topics too and convert it to a lifestyle blog. This was a little before the epic jewelry craze, at a time when practically no Indian jewelry blogs existed and lifestyle blogging was the ‘in thing’.
Even though I was tempted to create a lifestyle blog, I stuck to writing a niche blog because that is what I believed in. The journey hasn’t been without its share of doubts and failures but it has indeed been very interesting.
As a newbie blogger, when I was confused about the route I wanted to take in blogging, I asked myself these questions and they helped me decide. If you are bewildered like I was once, you could try it too.
1. What is your expectation from your blog? Do you I want to (a) Use it to chiefly promote your work/brand (b) Blog so as to share ideas, reviews, inspiration, or real information pertaining in a field (c) Only make money (d) Blog as just a hobby or a way to pass time
2. How much time and resource can you allocate? Blogging is an intensive job that requires a lot of effort and dedication
3. Do you want to be an expert Niche blogger or a lifestyle blogger or a little bit of both? The first two are great ways to blog, but I wouldnt recommend the third option
Though the first two questions are completely for you to think about (remember that there is no right or wrong answer) I can help out a bit with the third. A niche blog, which is ‘the trend now’ is an extremely focused blog on a particular topic which answers a question for the reader. It could be a solution, a recipe, a tutorial, an idea, an inspiration or even pure hardcore information within the niche. Lifestyle blogs on the other hand are all about connection.
The internet is filled with articles of how Niche blogging is mainly for making money but you get a lot of connections with lifestyle blogging which is somewhat incorrect. Like everything else, both have pros as well as cons and as a Niche blogger, here is my analysis of Why you should or should not be a Niche blogger
1. You get to write about a topic that you are really passionate about and inspire people which is really satisfying
2. You get to befriend similar minded people even if they are halfway across the globe
3. Chances of getting recognized with respect to that topic/genre are high without getting lost in the crowd
4. Niche blogs pave the way for other opportunities like paid guest blogging, columns in magazines or newspapers, appearances on shows and maybe even a book deal. Most of my writing jobs, press features and even a TV appearance came to me through my blog.
5. You get great free products & Supplies for reviews and with supplies you get to keep or sell the finished products that you make.
6. Money inflow from category targeted ads and affiliate product recommendations could be high depending on your niche and the type of readers you have
1. To write a lot on a topic, you either need to be an expert in it or be willing to work really hard to do research and provide a variety of interesting information to your readers. Though some people (like me) would really love this, it can get a little tedious if you don’t have a lot of time to devote to your blogging
2. It could get boring at times for your readers and you might lose a little crowd now and then
3. If you live in a place where there are few manufactures or distributors corresponding to your niche you might not be offered any products or supplies for review, even if you have a great blog. I have experienced this firsthand as there aren’t too many craft or jewelry supplies manufactures in India who do internet advertising and are willing to work with bloggers. Also if your readers are looking for serious academic content on your blog and you have shopping ads all over, you might not get any revenue from it
4. Competition from biggies in the field
So that pretty much sums up both the pros and cons of having a niche blog. Regardless of what the trend is, I think you should follow you heart when it comes to blogging and if you choose to do niche blogging, I hope that the things I shared help you. Cheers!