What should I blog about? Do I REALLY need to figure this out from the get-go? I get asked this question A LOT and I completely understand why you’d want to know this. I walked in your shoes once and I asked myself the same. Nobody wants to put time, energy and money into something people don’t want to read and brings no income.
That’s why it’s super important that we have the niche talk. Which is just a fancy way of saying, Hey sis, let’s brainstorm a topic you could talk about for days (more like years!) while people gather around and take notes.
UPDATE: Bluehost has given me a special discount for my readers! You can now start your blog for as little as $2.95/month (including a FREE domain name for the first year!). Check out my free tutorial on how to start a blog.
Why do I need a niche?
Many people want to start a blog but they get stuck in this limbo where they just can’t decide what to write about or if they need a niche at all.
It’s quite normal to have tons of interests and passions. Singling out a subject and choosing to solely focus on it can feel fake, like living a muted version of oneself.
But if you don’t commit to a niche, you’ll end up all over the place. And if you don’t have a clear idea what it is you are blogging about, you’ll confuse the heck out of everyone (including yourself!).
Here’s an analogy:
Imagine you wanted to go on a road trip. You pack a bag of random stuff and get in the car… since you have no idea where you want to go, you just sit there. Several places pop into your mind, but when you mentally check what’s in your bag, you realize you didn’t pack the right clothes or enough snacks to last you until you reach your destination. Minutes, then hours pass by and you are still in front of your house. Not much of a road trip, right?
Now say you wanted to head over to Louisiana because of your obsession with vampire. Even if you had no idea which specific attractions you’d like to visit, you’d still be able to drive all the way to the Pelican State confident that once there you’ll be able to figure out what to do and see by simply looking around or talking to the locals.
If you think figuring out what your blog is about is frustrating, writing your heart out just to realize no one cares is even worse.
Reason #1: A niche will help you connect with your audience
Say you talk about your undying love for salted caramel chocolate chip cookies in one post and the latest catwalk trends in the next.
Inevitably, you’ll end up with a bunch of random readers looking for specific answers to random questions. You’ll have to work extra hard to create a bond with them.
We are wired to connect with like-minded people and conversations with friends tend to flow around common interests. This holds true for both offline and online relationships.
A clear niche will keep your readers engaged as the conversation flows from one post to the next and into their inboxes.
Reason #2: A niche will simplify your business and keep things running smoothly
I like to think a niche is like a beacon in the dark. Almost every piece of content on your blog will gravitate around it in some way or another and this will simplify things for both you and your readers.
Or you can think of your niche as your home – the place you always come back to at the end of the day. You can even knock down a few walls, apply a fresh coat of paint and rearrange the furniture to work best for you every now and then.
But this isn’t the kind of remodeling you could do if you slept in a different hotel room every night.
Similarly, it’s nearly impossible to make improvements and build upon old content when each of your blog posts is on a different subject.
The sooner you figure out what to blog about, the easier it will be to monetize your blog.
What to blog about
Some bloggers start with a nichy niche and work their way into incorporating new layers of content while staying true to their unique angle and mission.
Others start with a broad topic and narrow down the focus of their blogs in time.
And a third category start by writing whatever they want and let their niche find them.
Regardless of your approach, it’s always good to have a sense of direction.
Remember that if you don’t know where you’re going, any road will take you there. If you aim at nothing, you’ll hit it every time. But when you have a beacon to follow, you are already ahead of 90% of the bloggers out there.
I may not be able to tell you what to blog about, but I’ll walk you through the bulletproof formula I used to choose my niche and the questions that helped me decide what to blog about.
Because of this, I was able to make $246 within the first month of starting this blog (see my first income report). This allowed me to cover all my startup costs AND make a profit. Soon after I reached the $1k milestone and launched my first digital product. Pinch me!
How to find your perfect blog idea in 4 easy steps
The secret source that makes a blog successful has 4 ingredients that seamlessly blend together like a symphony: you, them, a problem and a solution.
Step 1. Find your ‘thing’
What are you passionate about? You can use your passion to make your life better.
Make a list of your skills, interests, the things you know, and have personal experience with.
A word of warning though… try to refrain from including your hobbies. The moment a hobby becomes a business, it stops being a hobby. And you will need your hobbies to stay creative, to keep you sane and to avoid blogger burnout down the road. Recreational activities should always be part of your self-care routine.
What is your greatest strength? Are you a mentor, a cheerleader, an entertainer or an influencer? Use that to your advantage. When what you do is in alignment with who you are, magic happens.
What are you an expert at? And by ‘expert’ I mean that you lived through a certain situation and found a solution to the problem.
This puts you in an ideal position because you can understand what it feels like to be going through this and what people in this situation are struggling with better than they might understand themselves.
This is a super chill exercise because you don’t have to be the world’s most expertly expert. You only need to be a few steps ahead of other people.
Now the million dollar question is… do you still care enough about this problem that you’d gladly hold someone’s hand every step of the way?
Ultimately, you don’t need a university degree or 10 years of experience in a corporate job. You don’t need any special talent to start a money-making blog and dream BIG. But you need to START.
Step 2. Find your people
Think about the people you naturally gravitate toward nowadays. Are they first-time moms, highly-motivated entrepreneurs, animal lovers, vegetarian foodies, crafty college students, etc?
Chances are they are in a very similar place you are or have been not too long ago, so you have a common ground to build your relationship upon.
Make a list of their personality traits. Are they fun-lovers, go-getters, daredevils, introverts, perfectionists, hard-working, busy, frugal, clumsy, practical, humble, freethinking, etc?
Also make a list of their lifestyle choices and demographic data (such as age, gender, education, income level, etc.)
At first, they will double as your ideal reader. You’ll hang out with them in your inbox, on social media, and in the comments section of your blog. They will be the ones to purchase products and services you are an affiliate for (here’s my affiliate marketing guide for beginners). And eventually, they will become YOUR customers and clients.
Make sure your tribe includes your favorite people in the world!
To help you keep track of all your answers, I created a workbook you can download below. It’s a fillable PDF with 15 questions to help you find your perfect niche.
Step 3. Figure out what keeps them awake at night
By now, you probably have a pretty good idea who your ideal readers are and their lifestyle.
What do they struggle with? Brainstorm some of the issues they are facing and write them down.
Maybe they are busy moms who struggle to lose baby weight while balancing work and family.
Or hard-working writers who struggle with perfectionism, anxiety and fear of judgement.
It should be easy for you to single out their worries, struggles, and what keeps them awake at night because you are in the right frame of mind to hear them out.
Do any of their pain points intersect with your areas of expertise, interests, and skills? Your blog will be the crossroad between what they want and need and what you can offer.
Step 4. Give them the solution with a healthy dose of YOU
This is where all the pieces of the puzzle come together.
Your blog will be the solution to a problem your favorite peeps are struggling with and you know a great deal about.
Maybe you are still facing the same problem yourself but have plenty of experience, found some smart ways to cope with it, and already celebrated your first wins. Or maybe you’ve overcome it entirely.
This is your zone of genius. Woo-hoo!
You don’t have to be the first person to blog about it. Heck, you don’t even have to be the only one blogging about it! (You have better things to do than reinvent the wheel!) You only need a healthy dose of YOU. Your personal experience will set you apart and help you carve a unique angle.
What are the most popular blog niches?
When you take a step back, your blog might land in one of these categories and that’s perfectly fine. This will help you quickly explain to people what your blog is about when it comes up in a conversation.
- Personal finances
- Health and wellness
- Pet care
- Crafts and DIY
- Beauty and fashion
- Love and relationships
- Personal development
- Product reviews
- Home improvement and organisation
Ready to start?
Right now, finding your sweet spot can feel like trying to play pin the tail on the donkey. But the internet is this
The fear that you might ‘choose wrong’ will only hold you back. You don’t have to have every step of the way figured out before you even start (that’s one of the most hurtful lies wannabe entrepreneurs tell themselves).
The truth is that you’ll never stop second-guessing and doubting your decision until you have proof that it works. And you cannot prove its worth unless you act on it.
Don’t be afraid to embark on this journey and fine-tune your voice and angle as you go, based on what your audience responds to and what you find more enjoyable to write about. We all do that!
The worst thing you can do is to do nothing at all. The best thing you can do is to just START. Which one will you choose?
- Set up your blog, if you haven’t already. In this in-depth tutorial, I show you exactly how to start a successful blog. To give you a heads start, I personally negotiated a discounted price with Bluehost so you can start blogging for as little as $2.95/month.
- Get to understand the terminology bloggers use so you can quickly google the answers to any blogging related question. This is especially important if you are having a hard time wrapping your head around all the tech stuff (we’ve all been there, there’s no shame in that!). The best and most comprehensive eBook I came across is
BlogcabularyPlus. It thoroughly covers all the basics and it’s super easy to read and understand. I wish this book were available when I first started blogging!
- Dress up your blog pretty with a theme that communicates your message and builds your brand. Not every theme will work double duty for you, but here I show you how to choose a WordPress theme that will meet your particular needs.
THINGS TO READ NEXT
- Blogger vs WordPress: The Complete List of Pros and Cons
- How to Choose the Perfect Blogging Niche in 3 Crazy-Simple Steps
- How to Move from WordPress.com to WordPress.org
- Bluehost Review: Why Host Your Blog With Them When You’re Just Starting Out
- How to Start a WordPress Blog and Make Money With It
About the author:
Hey there, dream chaser! I’m a writer and designer on a mission to inspire and empower you to create a highly profitable minimalist online business and show up for your dreams in a sustainable way.