Finding your Niche – To be a Jack of All or a Master of Some?

Assume that you are a small business owner who manufactures shoes. If you decide that your target customer includes just about everyone who wears shoes, your marketing strategy has lost the war even before it began – you’re likely to be yet another player in an already crowded market.

Similarly, if you are a freelance content writer, your target customer can potentially be any business who uses content, which is practically every company in the world. And yet, a mass-market approach is not likely to get you anywhere. Just like how each of us carefully chooses a pair of shoes that best fits our feet, style, and comfort, every customer is looking for a specific kind of writer. No discerning customer is looking for a writer who can just put words together to reach a specific word count.

Also, writing, even technical writing, is a very creative process. While you may have templates, style guides, best practices, et al to give you a basic framework, only you, the writer, has the power to choose the words, style, and format to address the needs of your audience as you understand it. So, like any passionate craftsman, it is important that you discover your niche – the one or few special forms of writing that you are best at.

However, 'niche’ is not something you can find under a rock or just decide on a whim. A niche must be cultivated over time. To help find your niche segment  try answering a few simple questions like:

  • What is my style of writing best suited for?
  • Which market segment do I like writing about the most?
  • Which clients have I had the most fruitful associations with?
  • What is it that I bring to the ‘content’ table that my competitors don’t?

In fact, it might be a good idea to begin your career as a generalist, trying your hands at every project that comes your way, and over time, choosing to become a specialist who excels in certain forms of writing.

Many content writers may feel that limiting themselves to specific genres or industry verticals can narrow their market and reduce the opportunities available to them. But the truth remains that defining your niche empowers you enjoy your work every day, give your customers the best each time, and eventually become the market leader in your area of expertise.

Defining a niche certainly does not mean that you will be immune to competition, but if you innovate frequently and keep up with the market trends (again, easier if you are catering to a particular segment), you will be way ahead of the pack.

 

Do you agree with this idea or do you have an argument against it? Drop us a line, we would love to hear from you.

Category: Career, Content Development, Freelancing, Writing

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