How to Choose your Niche as a Content Writer?
Search through the internet and you will find millions in the business of content writing. To stay ahead in this competitive environment, you need to have something different, your niche, your speciality or your unique selling preposition. How else would you be remembered among the crowd?
Content is a very dynamic form of writing and it can take any shape from technical, academic, website, to creative writing. You have a large number of emerging businesses and multiple industries that may need specialised content. Moreover, within specific domains, there can be dozens of different formats that you can follow. They can confuse you and your first instinct would be to choose the easy way out, pick the most popular format such SEO blogging. However, if writing is not what you do for hobby or just a little extra income, there are other richer formats that you might want to consider as your speciality. They will give you more traction and long term business.
How to choose a speciality?
You can choose your niche based on a number of parameters that include:
Format: You can become a writer who provides highly specialised form of content that is difficult to make and would need special skills. You can target case studies, whitepapers, training modules, books, executive profiles, copywriting, and more such specialised formats as your specialization.
Industry: If you have been a technical person and have a good knowledge of a specific industry, you can turn it into your speciality. Even if you do not have experience in the field but only the subject knowledge, you can still become a writer for that. For instance, if you are an engineering graduate with IT as a specialization, you can target IT companies and write content for them.
Domains: Any form of content can be categorised into domains like academic, business, technical, and creative content that allow you to choose any of these as a niche. The choice of these wide categories will give you much freedom to explore multiple industries and content formats. For instance, if you are a business writer, you can create almost any type of content for any industry as long as it is talking about business.
Within each of the niches discussed above, you can create a more focused niche. For instance, as a case study writer, you can specialise in marketing case studies. As an IT industry writer, you can specialise in IT blogs. As an academic writer, you can specialise in journal writing.
To be able to choose a specific niche, you should have the desired qualities and knowledge as a writer. You may need to assess yourself on a number of parameters to make the right choice for yourself.
Ask yourself –
- Which is the area I feel most confident about?
- Which is the area in which I carry the most knowledge?
- Which is the area that interests me most?
- What are the skills needed for each niche and how many of them do I have?
- What type of content can I write if I choose a specific niche?
- What companies or projects can I target for the selected niche?
- Do I have the strengths in the area of chosen niche?
Let’s take an example:
I choose business and management writing as my niche because it gives me freedom in terms of formats and industries. I can write for anyone and in any format as long as I am talking about business and management. How would I answer the questions above?
Which is the area I feel most confident about? I am most confident about business and management subjects as I am an MBA and have worked in corporate.
Which is the area in which I carry the most knowledge? I am a BE graduate and MBA with years of experience in business development, marketing, research and data analysis. So, I have both theoretical and practical knowledge of business and management. I also carry knowledge of technical and academic domains.
Which is the area that interests me most? Business, management, and academic writing interests me most.
What are the skills needed for each niche and how many of them do I have? For management writing, I need knowledge of management models that I have already studied in my college. For business writing, I need to understand how businesses work. As I have experience of working in multiple industries, I carry the needed skills. For academic writing, I need to have knowledge of theories and research which I have studied in MBA.
What type of content can I write if I choose specific niche? In management and business writing, I can write website articles, blogs, and case studies. In academic writing, I can write books and journal papers.
What companies or projects can I target for the selected niche? I select business and management writing including academic writing on management subjects. I can target educational institutes, corporate, and students as target.
Do I have the strengths in the area of chosen niche? Yes, and they are –
- Good research knowledge can help me gather information needed for generating unique ideas for writing
- Being a technical person, it would be easy for me to understand IT company products and processes so I can target them
- Because of my experience in marketing and sales, I can write marketing articles for companies
- I am very good at reading so I can read widely and can come up with well-researched content
- I am a good listener so I can talk to company heads and understand their requirements well
- I have a good grasp over language so I can produce good articles
- I also carry knowledge of writing skills and principles that I have learned from a comprehensive writing course I took while working
- I have learnt multiple software including Photoshop, Microsoft Excel, Microsoft PowerPoint, WordPress, and SPSS. This can help me create opportunities as I can do copywriting, write on analytics, create business presentations, write SEO articles, do blogging, and can take research projects that need statistical analysis.
So, after you are done answering the questions, what do you have?
- You niche – Business and management writing
- Formats to write – Case studies, research reports, website articles, presentations, and blogs
- Companies to target – IT companies and educational institutes
- Subjects to write on – Sales, marketing, and analytics
Now, that you know what to target, can you think of a branding and targeting strategy for your chosen niche?
Keep watching the space – coming up next week is “How to Brand yourself as a Content Writer?”