How to Be an Expert In Your Blog Niche (When You Know Nothing About Your Niche)
I know this kind of comes off as a weird question. I mean, why would you blog about something you know nothing about?
Isn’t the purpose of a blog to share your expertise and knowledge?
While that is one of many reasons to start a blog, it is certainly not a hard and fast rule when it comes to choosing your niche.
In fact, choosing your niche is all about following your passion – and you may not be an expert when it comes to what you’re passionate about, right?
Just because you’re educated, knowledgeable and experience in a certain field or topic doesn’t mean you want to spend all of your time writing about it.
It can be discouraging to not have the drive to write about your area of expertise and you may be tempted to throw the entire notion of niches out the window.
Before you do, I want to explain to you why niches are crucial to the success of your blog.
And then I want to tell you exactly how you can be an expert in your niche when you know nothing about your niche.
Because it’s perfectly fine to pick a lifestyle niche or a creative niche or a fun blog niche!
The Reason You Need a Blog Niche
It’s no secret that the best blogs on the web focus their content on one central theme, one topic or one niche.
Just look at Minimalist Baker.
They are primarily a vegan-based food blog that only uses five ingredients or less for each meal.
And they have millions of visitors come to their blog for that exact type of content.
You may think that catering your blog to as many people as possible is the best way to gain traffic.
I mean, the more people you appeal to, the more people will visit – right?
Not really. At least not the right kind of traffic.
For example, you may have an article about easy preschool crafts for children among a variety of post topics that include advancing in your career, top travel destinations and a recipe for celery soup (this is about as random as I could get).
The mom that visits for the craft ideas is going to take the information she needs and head on out.
She’s looking for toddler-related ideas and has no reason to explore the rest of your blog or even return for new posts.
Yes, that’s one visit. And you may get more visits from moms looking for craft ideas, or women looking for career advancement ideas or grannies looking for a recipe for celery soup.
Then that’s it. They come, they see, they leave and they don’t come back.
Having a blog niche is important in building a following – loyal readers who will keep coming back and share your content with others. This is the kind of traffic you want (and the traffic that can make your blog more profitable).
But we’re not here to talk about traffic. We’re here to talk about being an expert in your blog niche when you don’t know anything about your niche.
Because this is another thing a blog niche does for you: it shows your credibility and gains the trust of your readers.
And trust is a HUGE factor in making money blogging.
So if you’re going to focus your blog on a particular niche, shouldn’t you already be an “expert” in that niche?
Do I Have To Be an Expert in My Blog Niche?
The first thing you need to do is understand that there is a difference between being an “expert” and being knowledgeable and passionate.
More than your ability to explain things to other people, your audience is going to pick up on your passion for the topic and your want of helping others.
While it’s important to provide accurate information, readers will appreciate your experience just as much (if not more) than they appreciate expertise.
You do not have to be a world-leading expert on a subject in order to give advice. You just have to be more knowledgeable about the topic than the readers you are writing for.
I always say to be a few steps ahead of your blog audience. This is how I started Twins Mommy.
I shared my blog growth and naturally started having mom bloggers come to my blog to learn the next steps to growing their blog.
And even then, there are ways to display expertise in a niche without having knowledge in a niche.
Confusing? Don’t worry. I’m going to explain that really soon.
Let your passion guide you to your blog niche. Like they said in “Field of Dreams:” “If you build it, they will come.”
5 Ways To Become an Expert In Your Blog Niche
If you find yourself passionately drawn to a topic you know nothing about – mason jar crafts, home decor, social media marketing – here are some ways you can become an expert in your niche:
1. Don’t Focus on Being the “Best”
The more pressure you put on yourself to be the “best” in your blog niche, the less confidence you will have in sharing your knowledge and experience.
To be honest, there will always be people who are smarter, more skilled and more knowledgeable than you are.
Think about this way: You are (obviously) a writer. You have a blog, right? You write posts for it, right?
Who says you can’t teach other people to write good content on a writing blog as well? You’re not J.K. Rowling but your writing experience and knowledge is valuable to other people.
Here’s another example: You are a mother and have potty trained your children. You don’t have to be a leading pediatrician to help other mothers through their potty training struggles.
You don’t have to be the best in the world. You only need to be the best to your readers, who are looking to you because they lack the knowledge and experience you have.
And those people who are “better” than you in your niche? They are your teachers – someone to look up to and learn from.
So when you’re diving into a blog niche you are not an expert in, you can still provide value and support to those who need it.
2. Do a Case Study
Case studies are helpful when you want to blog about a topic you don’t have a lot of knowledge in. They allow you an opportunity to share with your readers your journey in learning about a particular topic
For example, you may not know anything about the Keto diet but want to incorporate this way of eating into your life. You could focus your content on your journey, your struggles and your wins.
Case studies are a great way to share your process with your readers and I’ve personally used them to chronicle my learning experiences.
For instance, I did one for this site on growing a blog. I had never grown a blog before, so I chronicled my journey and detailed what I learned along the way.
I wasn’t an expert in blog growth, but framing the information I wanted to share with my learning experience gave my readers not only insight into what I learned but also a detailed guide on how to do the same – successes and failures too.
Again, it’s not about being the Lead So-and-So of your blog niche – it’s all about giving your audience valuable content that solves their problem.
3. Educate Yourself and Do Your Research
When you’re writing in a blog niche that you are not an expert in, you want to make sure you are providing true and accurate information.
An important factor in building an audience is building trust. Readers are going to better appreciate you being honest about not being an expert than trying to pull the wool over their eyes.
This advice actually bodes true for anything you write, whether you are a pro or not. No matter what message you want to share with your audience, you should always back it up by citing references.
Doing so will lend further credibility to your information.
Here are two examples:
- You want to start a blog about breastfeeding having breastfed your children. You plan to draw upon your experience because you are not a lactation expert. Even though you’ve gone through it, you still want to provide your readers with access to studies to back up your information.
- You are starting a blog about following the Keto diet having never done it before. You want to focus on an audience who have never tried it either by bringing them with you on your journey. Here it’s important to cite solid information so that your readers trust you are leading them down the right path.
You’re not trying to “prove” yourself – your content is not an argument against those who are skeptical of your “expertise.” You are simply being honest with your audience and admitting that you don’t have ALL the knowledge or answers.
Readers appreciate that kind of transparency.
4. Turn to the Experts
While you don’t have to be an expert to offer valuable information in your niche, you can always turn to the experts to gather more information.
And I don’t mean simply citing the work of others. Get in touch with experts, influencers, other bloggers or even friends and acquaintances that may have more knowledge and experience than you.
You can set up an interview, ask for a quote or simply pick their brains to gain information about your niche.
If you find a blog that does a good job covering topics in your niche, sign up for their newsletter. This will help you gain some “behind-the-scenes” insight into their niche and process.
Added bonus: Networking like this is not only great for increasing your knowledge about your niche but it also helps gain quality traffic to your site.
Don’t be afraid to lean on the knowledge of others to help build your level of expertise in your niche.
5. Practice Makes Perfect
Okay, so I don’t want you to get caught up in being “perfect” – there’s no such thing, even for the most successful bloggers out there.
What I’m saying is that the more you blog about your niche, the more you will gain valuable knowledge and the closer you will become to being an expert.
So, the more you write, the more content you publish and the more interactions you have online, the better you will become.
That being said, keep in mind that quality is still better than quantity. Don’t focus on pumping out a lot of content just to prove you know what you are talking about.
Instead, focus on creating well-written and thought-out pieces in a regular basis.
Use online resources, expert advise and, of course, your own experience to create valuable content readers will gravitate toward in order to gain information or solve a problem.
How Much Do You Know About Your Niche?
It may seem silly to blog about something you don’t know anything about, but being a successful blogger is a marathon, not a race.
If you’re going to dedicate yourself to growing your blog, you need to focus on something that you’re passionate about – something you find joy in writing about.
Now I want to hear from you! How much do you really know about your niche?
Why are you attracted to that topic?