If you go onto any page teaching freelance writing, one of the first instructions you’ll read is:
“Find Your Niche.”
It’s an important step.
For you readers, It may beg the question — what’s my niche? What topic of study do I focus on?
Here’s something that’ll shock you: I go against all advice, and I don’t have a niche.
Does my business suffer because of it?
It hasn’t so far, and that’s what we’re going to talk about today.
What Is a Niche?
A niche is the area of study that suits you best.
It’s a topic you focus on and base your career around, and this helps with having an authoritative voice.
“A place or position suitable or appropriate for a person or thing.”Dictionary
For example, if I had a blog about animals, and every post I made talked about our feline friends, then animals would be my niche.
If the client wants to hire someone to write about animals — they’re going to go for the most skilled writer that has an authoritative voice. With an animal niche, that’ll put me ahead of the curb, and increase my chances of scoring the commission.
For further reading on that, check out this article by Woocommerce.
However, that’s not why you’re here. You want to know why I don’t have a niche, and why I am crazily going against all advice.
Why I Don’t Have a Niche
There’s one very straight-forward answer to this:
A niche restricts my market.
This is a writing website, and thus, I write.
If I were to focus on a topic, let’s say animals again, and write only about them — then why would anyone outside of animal writing blogs hire me?
Time to be big-headed: I am capable of doing two things very well — researching and writing.
Therefore, I will tackle any topic under the sun that’s thrown at me, and I’ll tackle it well.
I talk about this briefly over on my Frequently Asked Question page.
If a client wanted a piece written on rocket science, rather than bury them in all of my grades and my website focused on nothing but rocket science, I’d instead reach out and show them how well I can write.
I’ll write them a piece on rocket science before they’ve hired me.
I mean it!
I won’t show the client I have a niche in their subject, I’ll show them I can write in their subject.
I’ll read their brief or job posting, and then I’ll send them a paragraph relevant to what they’re asking that I’ve spent maybe five to ten minutes on.
Here’s an example:
I’ve collated a small sample based on your brief. Please have a read below:
*Google Doc Link*
If it’s to your liking, please consider me for the role.
You can have a look at my website here for further samples in different fields: http://www.samboydwriting.com”
Straight away, I am showing the client I have experience in their subject, and that I am versatile, too.
More so than:
I have lots of experience in your subject. Please check out my website for samples: http://www.samboydwriting.com”
Why should the client have to look for my samples?
This method has scored me tons of jobs, and not once have I thought, boy do I wish I had a niche!
Bear that in mind when building your website!
Though that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t have a niche!
How to Have a Niche the RIGHT WAY.
Having a niche is a proven method, so I’m not telling you to avoid having one.
I’m telling you to avoid restricting your market.
If you want to have a niche, the right way of doing it is by subsidising.
Most people choose a niche they’re passionate about: so absolutely do that!
However, if you want to sell freelance writing as your career — keep your options open!
People always say in job markets to never burn any bridges, so why would you do so by only writing in one field?
Finding your niche is wrong and sticking to it is wrong. Having an online portfolio with all of your writing experience is correct, and a niche is a bonus.
With my method, I can apply for any writing gig I see — and still show experience in it. If it happens to be in a niche I like, then my pitch will be even stronger. I can send them my generic website, the sample, and the subsidised niche website.
With all three the chances of getting the job are astronomical.
So consider it! Subsidise your niche and don’t restrict your market.
… And that’s all for today! It’s just a quick read this week, but hopefully it’s a small piece of advice that’s of value to you.
Think I’m bonkers and barking up the wrong tree?
Comment below and let me know!
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See you next week! We’re going to talk about my novel some more!