Standard advice for new bloggers is: Find a niche that isn’t crowded. But finding a niche without competition is hard – and it’s even harder to find one that you really care about. Is it possible to succeed with blogging in a crowded niche?
(Hint: Yes, it is possible to succeed in a crowded niche!)
In this episode of Marketing in Minutes you will learn:
- Why you may not want to look for a niche without competition
- Why you a crowded niche may be better
- How to succeed in a crowded niche
All in 10 minutes.
More Information on How to Succeed in a Crowded Niche
For a complete training program that will teach you how you can get traffic for any website or blog in any niche check out The Online Growth Masterclass:
And for a complete traffic and brand building strategy that we used to turn our blog into the business it is today, check out The Social Traffic Code:
Check out the full transcript of today’s episode below.
Why you shouldn’t start a blog.
I love blogging and I’m a professional blogger. I also believe that everyone should have a blog – or at least should try blogging for a while.
I often get asked what it takes to succeed with a blog, especially in a niche that has a lot of competition.
I’m Jonathan Gebauer and you are listening to Marketing in Minutes.
I’m Jonathan Gebauer – and today, let’s talk about what it takes to succeed with a blog in a crowded niche.
The standard advice about starting a blog is: Look for a niche with very little competition.
And this advice used to be good advice. But that is rapidly changing. There are few areas left where you will be without competition when you are running a blog, and let’s face it:
If you find one that still has very few competing bloggers and content creators, then you will probably end up running a blog in a niche that you have zero love for.
And running a blog in that situation is very difficult – and very unfulfilling. Becoming an expert and creating content in a niche you don’t care about is terrible. It’s not fun, and it’s not what makes blogging interesting for most people.
Which also means that most blogs get started in areas where there is a lot of competition. Just think of all the fashion blogs that get started.
Which begs the question whether that makes sense at all – can you succeed in a crowded niche?
The answer is yes.
When Susanna and I started The Social Ms, it was already 2014 – and honestly, we were late to the game.
We are in the marketing niche – teaching marketing to other bloggers and businesses. And if you think about it, being in that niche is really tough.
We compete against everyone who is good at online marketing. Every marketing blogger is doing SEO for the same keywords and marketing to the same social media audience as we are.
But still, we managed to build traffic and succeed in this niche.
In less than 6 months we were sitting comfortably at 50.000 pageviews per month. We were selected as the number 8 most important social media marketing brand on Twitter. And what was more important, we got clients – clients who chose us over the competition.
So I don’t just believe that you can succeed in a crowded niche – I know that you can.
Which is why I have strong opinions about why, when, and how you should start a blog.
If you ask me how we did it, how we succeeded in that niche, then the answer is a combination of things – and I will go into detail in just a second.
But before I do that, I want to counter one very common argument that has always comes up in that situation: That blogging success is just about luck.
Of course, there are bloggers who got lucky – but that just meant that they were the first or the best to serve a specific need in their target audience. And that in itself is an accomplishment – because it means your assessment of your market was spot on.
If you manage to succeed with a blog in a crowded niche, then you’ve done some things right.
If that wasn’t the case, your competition would’ve eaten you alive – and no amount of luck could change that.
But now I want to tell you how we succeeded with The Social Ms in the crowded marketing niche.
In my opinion we succeeded because of three specific things we did right from the start:
First, we treated our blog as a business right from day 1. We had closed our first business because of other reasons, and we needed a way to make money fast. Which meant we needed this to work.
And when you treat your blog as a business and not as a hobby, this makes you work in a different way then if you would otherwise. If it’s just your hobby, then it doesn’t matter if you don’t stick to your plan of writing three blog posts a week – but when it’s your business, it means that you fall behind. It means that your business is on step closed to failure.
Second – we always knew that content isn’t king in a crowded niche. When you run a content business in a crowded niche, the real king is distribution. Without being able to get eyes on your content, you can create the best content of the world, it doesn’t matter.
What this comes down to is that you need a distribution strategy right from the start. And when someone asks me today for one single piece of advice about running an online business, then I usually say: “Don’t start before you have an idea on how you get enough traffic.” And what I help most people I work with is to get exactly that strategy in place.
For us, that traffic strategy was Twitter – and we knew how we would get traffic right from the start. Of course, by today we have diversified our traffic sources, but our Twitter strategy is what allowed us to get where we are today.
The third reason for our success in a crowded niche is that we focused on something we could do that no one else was doing. We focused on low-budget marketing. Or in other words, we do anything but advertising with a strong focus on social media traffic generation.
We focused our business on something no one else was doing – and that is still possible in every single niche on the web. Just because there is content for your niche and you are offering services similar to your competitors doesn’t mean that you have to do everything absolutely the same. You can and should allow your business to be slightly different – and you will be able to build your own audience.
If you focus on these three elements of your business you can succeed in a crowded niche. Treat your blog as a business from day 1, focus on the distribution of your content, and allow your business to be slightly different from your competitors, and you can succeed.
And if you are still asking yourself whether it would be better to start a business in a niche that isn’t crowded yet, then let me give you one final example about blogging in a not so crowded niche.
In 2015 Neil Patel set out prove that anyone could run a blog and make 100.000 dollars per month. With the help of his friend Mike Kamo, he started the blog Nutrition Secrets – and succeeded. After 12 months they made their goal.
Nobody cared about it anymore – the last entry on the blog is from December 2016.
They let they’re 1.2 million per year blog die because no one really cared for it. That’s what happens if you run a blog that you don’t really care for.
In my opinion, it’s more important that you run a blog in a niche you care for and put in the work that it needs than focusing on a niche that you don’t care for just because there is less competition.
I hope you liked this episode of Marketing in Minutes. If you like this podcast, subscribe and leave a review on Apple podcasts – and if you don’t, let me know what I should improve.
For more information on how to succeed with a blog in a crowded niche visit the show notes at blog.thesocialms.com/MiM-24… blog.thesocialms.com/MiM-24.
And to get free social media and SEO traffic in any niche, check out The Online Growth Masterclass or read our book, The Social Traffic Code.
I’m Jonathan Gebauer and this was Marketing in Minutes.
That’s it for today – take care, Bye!