It's great to find a niche that has real potential for success, but if you know nothing about it, you've got your work cut out for you.
If you are on the journey to building a passive income through thriving online affiliate marketing websites, you'll know that step one of a million is to find a niche for your blog.
Anyone who has read this blog or visited my YouTube channel will know that nailing a suitable niche is a priority for a viable online business and several factors come into play in making your selection.
As a niche website builder, you can often find amazing, potentially highly profitable niches with high traffic and low competition that are in obscure or random areas that are completely outside experience.
The question is, do you jump into a niche you know nothing about?
For a blog to be successful it has to do a good job of engaging the readers and providing them with the information, products, and services that they need.
Authenticity counts for a lot and many poorly executed niche blogs are literally dead in the water because they are written for a search engine bot rather than a person.
There is a reason why most bloggers write about topics they are interested in or know something about.
You are immediately landed with the extra research and learning required to get a handle on the niche so you can start writing and building the blog effectively.
Unfortunately, there are no shortcuts for this.
Even if you outsource content production to writers and other creatives you still are running the show and will need to direct their efforts profitably.
Here are ten methods you can use to write a blog in a niche you don't know.
So I thought it would be useful to share 10 key methods for writing blogs in an unknown niche that can get you up and running quickly.
Some, like searching high and low for keywords, I have always used.
Others come from the tips and tricks of copywriters I have worked with who regularly write on subjects they know absolutely nothing about.
So, let's get into this.
10. Alphabet Soup Method
When writing outside of your comfort zone, being armed with a healthy supply of organized, relevant targeted keywords makes all the difference to maintaining momentum on your blog.
I can spend hours doing this and I get the payback with optimized content that is well-targeted for the niche I am writing in.
Keywords are the bread and butter of affiliate marketing and blogging and for me, you can never have too many, especially when it comes to long-tail keywords that get to the heart of what your users may be searching for.
A quick, easy and free method for gathering up keywords for your niche is what is known as the Google Alphabet or Alphabet Soup method of generating keywords using Google Search.
I like this method because all I need is the Google Search Bar to generate tens or hundreds of relevant keywords for my niche.
Grab a pen and paper or work on Sheets or Excel to do this.
Simply write your primary keyword into the search bar and a single letter from the alphabet.
For example, if your primary keyword is “antennas”, write antennas with a letter a, antennas with a letter b, antennas with a letter c, and so on.
When you type in these phrases Google will auto-generate popular related search terms that start with the letter that you add to the primary keyword.
These suggestions will appear beneath the search bar and you can simply note these down to boost your keyword reserves massively!
If you are up for it you can also try the reverse Alphabet method where you place your alphabet letter ahead of your primary keyword to gain additional search terms.
9. Paid tools like Keyword Chef
Even if you are armed with plenty of keywords you still need to have an idea of the context, search intent, traffic and competitiveness of the keywords you will put your efforts into including in your blog.
If we're honest, the internet is awash with a lot of keyword tools that can waste your time by generating keywords that have little real-world significance.
I remember when I started blogging writing so many articles for poorly targeted keywords only to see my efforts wasted with little traffic coming after hours of work.
That's why now I am much more discerning about the tools I use and share with you, only using software that will provide quality authentic keywords that you can target immediately.
Keyword Chef stands out as a keyword selection tool because it has been developed by online publishers including bloggers and marketers with their bottom line in mind.
The creator, Ben Adler has built a highly focused and uncluttered tool that can rustle up surprising 'wildcard' keywords and search terms that you would easily miss using other methods.
It will also do real-time bulk SERP analysis in bulk which shaves hours off doing the job yourself.
Their software targets all the metrics needed to find and filter the keywords in any niche that are actually going to rank.
The platform has a clean layout that is easy to use and ideal for building a niche website in an unfamiliar niche.
Here is a quick testimonial I made for Keyword Chef, which I use myself and am confident in recommending to you:
Keyword Chef is a premium tool, but I have found that it performs excellently in keeping me ahead of the competition in the niches I operate in.
A simple reliable tool like this is a great sidekick for navigating the uncharted waters of a new niche.
8. Answer The Public
Imagine you could sit down with a user of your new blog.
What would you ask them?
I mean, it would be an unprecedented opportunity to really understand what your site visitors really want and how to provide them with it.
In a way, we use blunt keyword research tools to do just that but with Answer The Public, you can now benefit from a tool that is engineered to provide you with an unprecedented level of insight into just what exactly people are looking for when they search for keywords in a particular niche.
Answer The Public is a unique SEO tool that expertly wields Google's suggest technology to provide detailed mind maps of autocomplete long-tail keywords and the most common search queries related to your niche search terms.
With these in hand, you have a rich store of relevant long-tail keywords to draw from as you write your blog.
The striking visual presentation is only bettered by the level of detail that Answer The Public provides.
You will be well equipped to create blogs that will catch and hold the attention of your users.
This tool will also definitely help you ace context in your blogs, which may be difficult otherwise as you don’t know anything about the niche.
As it is free (with premium upgrades for pro and enterprise volume users), there is no reason not to give it a go!
7. By using Google's People Also Ask
People Also Ask or PAA is a great Google SERP feature that provides answers to questions related to a Google user's search queries.
This popular area collates rich snippets for many questions that will be related to the primary keywords in your niche.
Targeting these rich snippets is now an SEO pastime in itself, and if you are looking to dominate a new niche an excellent approach would be to start answering PAA questions in earnest.
After all, if you know nothing about the niche, the user questions are probably your own.
Study PAA collapsible boxes in the SERPs for your main keywords and consider generating content that addresses these queries.
The dynamic loading functionality means that you can glean an increasing number of these PAA questions, which should give you great oversight over the niche.
PAA can provide you with real insight into what users will be searching for in relation to your niche's primary keywords.
By studying the PAA questions you will be able to generate clusters or chains of questions and answers that should come together to make some decent blogs.
I find that they are particularly useful for generating value-adding FAQ content, which is great for reviews and other types of posts.
I talk about this more along with an excellent Schema markup to pole vault you to these prime SERP positions in my article “What is FAQ Schema Markup?”
6. Make YouTube your teacher to learn about your niche
When writing for enthusiasts or interested visitors in a niche that I don't know, I find that having the jargon, turns of phrase, and key terms to hand will make all the difference in producing an authentic blog.
Over time I've found that turning to YouTube is one of the best ways of getting a handle on new subjects.
Think about it. Real enthusiasts and experts are taking to YouTube in their thousands to share what they know about the most obscure and complicated topics.
And I've found they do a great job of getting me up to speed on topics or products I know nothing about.
Many professional copywriters who need to sound authentic in a new area of knowledge quickly will turn to YouTube and immerse themselves in the subject, niche, topic or subculture to get a real feel for the topic and audience they will be writing for.
When writing review articles, YouTube is a great source of footage of the product or service you are interested in being used.
To get ahead in new niches with YouTube, all you need to do is search YouTube for your primary keywords or topic.
Another great YouTube aid is the video transcript which you can lift and read at your own pace to get phrasing and terminology just right.
You can find out how to access YouTube video transcripts here.
5.Podcasts are a great way of immersing yourself in the new topics
Podcasts also provide an immersive learning experience that can save you time in understanding your niche.
Podcasts are a very convenient way of accruing knowledge in just about any area you are interested in and this style of audio programming is very personal and easy to consume.
It's thought that there are over 2 million podcasts and climbing so it is highly likely that you will be able to find an expert in your target niche that you can learn from.
Not only will you get valuable information, but it can also be very beneficial to your writing to hear how the experts in your niche speak so you can make your articles and blogs sound similar.
Finding podcasts is easy too, with big players like Spotify, iTunes, Google Podcasts, and Audible having apps that are easily downloaded to your phone.
These platforms can be searched and within minutes you can have curated a niche-focused playlist that will have you brimming with ideas.
Pat Fylnn has long been my go-to Podcast to listen to on long journeys or holidays.
My last trip to Ireland was filled with Pat Fylnn in my ear teaching me things as I Relaxed.
You can listen to your podcasts while driving, doing housework, or exercising as your hands will be free.
If you can find a relevant podcast in your niche that you enjoy, you can keep listening to it as long as you are writing for your new blog.
You may even find that there is enough room in your new niche to start a podcast of your own!
4. Scoping other blogs will help get yours up to speed quickly
When developing content for a niche that is completely new to you, the blog of your competitors is a great place to start.
Not only will you learn about the niche in general, by reading widely you can get a grasp of the types of content that work in the niche, keyword context, and also the successful strategies for monetization used by the leading blogs and sites.
Putting effort into thorough competitor research will not only get you up to speed in an unfamiliar area of knowledge but also equip you with a strategic content plan that should see you leapfrog to the top of the SERPs for your target keywords.
To research my competitor's content I usually take the following steps:
- I look for content in the niche that is highly shared or has high engagement. You can use BuzzSumo or another SEO analytical tool to assess shares and find out what is popular in their blog and where their audience hangs out and trades information online.
- I find out who are the leading influencers and voices in my targeted niche and learn from and about them. I want to gain a better understanding of the niche by looking at content production from those who are leading in it.
- Knowing what keywords mapping competitors are ranking for will help me in writing my blog. Tools like SEMRush, Moz and even Google Site Command help me to work out which keywords are driving them traffic and accumulate a valuable supply of keywords to draw from, target them myself if the level of competition is favourable.
3. AI content writing can assist you in creating relevant content for a niche you do not know
I can often struggle to generate ideas or come up with a credible approach to writing an article in a niche that is completely new.
I'm sure you can relate to a dense case of writer's block that can have you staring at the screen for hours on end!
Doing nothing will not get you paid, so a useful solution I've found to help inject momentum into new topics is to use an Artificial Intelligence (AI) writing assistant to begin the process of composing articles for me.
Now the thought of AI may have you thinking of a robot sitting at my desk with a laptop (I wish)! But the reality of AI writing is far more mundane and not entirely labor free.
Artificial intelligence writing tools are highly sophisticated software that have been programmed with complex deep learning algorithms to generate natural language writing; writing the reads like a person has written it.
These bots work by analyzing thousands or even millions of examples of writing in a particular area and generating a new, unique piece of writing.
To get a handle on a new topic I can turn to software like Jarvis.ai to generate short and long-form content that is based on the keywords in the niche that I am working on.
I simply log in to this platform and select the type of content I need, anything from meta descriptions to a full blog post.
I add my keywords, set Jarvis the AI bot to work, and in as little as a few minutes I have content that is ready to work with.
The content that Jarvis produces is remarkable for computer-generated writing, but it will still require work as I shape it into what I think will be a successful piece of content.
Where the writing is in a new niche, I find using Jarvis.ai is most helpful because of the information the AI article includes which may provide additional insights that will be useful to readers of your blog.
I talk more about Jarvis the bot and 10 other AI software you may be interested in, in this video:
2. Check out what your website visitors talk about in online forums and groups
Another key method of fast knowledge acquisition recommended by some of the professional writers I know is trawling the forums, message boards, groups, and social media hangouts that are related to a particular niche.
Again, it's all about immersing yourself in the content and conversations that are related to a particular topic, until you gain enough understanding to write credibly about it.
Obscure topics and questions may only be able to be authoritatively answered using information or links provided by enthusiasts or experts in online forums.
For example, when writing my Fishkeeping Forever site, forums were a great way of checking that the information and advice I was providing was correct and credible.
User-Generated Content reflects what your potential site visitors think and feel about the topics, issues, products and services you will be writing about.
Reddit is one of the best sources of this type of information, with Redditors sometimes producing whole blogs on particular topics of interest.
Make it a habit to trawl the subreddits until you find topics and content gems that are relevant to your niche and can be used to enrich your posts.
If you are just starting to write your blog,
I would definitely suggest signing up to the leading forums that are related to your niche, to keep abreast of the conversations that surround the keywords and topics that you will be regularly writing about.
1. Keep up to date on news and content related to your new niche with Google Alerts
When writing in an area that you know absolutely nothing about, there is a great temptation to produce a rehash of the standard topics and article formats you see on the first page of Google.
Going down this route adds nothing new to the body of content that exists on the major search engines, and leaves you with stagnant content that does not shift, no matter how optimized you make it.
Why not mix things up by taking the lead with producing value-adding content that strives to remain at the forefront of discourse in your new niche?
An excellent way of doing this is to keep abreast of new content that is related to your keywords using Google Alerts.
Google Alerts are free and easy to set up and will deliver news and new content related to topics you want to follow straight to your inbox.
You can then use this content to keep your blog posts fresh and relevant, potentially taking advantage of new trends, queries, and products that people will be searching for about your niche.
So there it is. 10 great methods that will assist you in writing a blog with authenticity in a niche you don’t know
Writing a blog is always a learning experience and to keep serving up content that is fresh, relevant, and useful to the visitors of your site you will have to keep up with what’s new in your niche.
Stay open to using your new niche as an opportunity to really gain expertise and add value to your audience and I’m sure that you will have a thriving blog in no time at all!