I know this goes against everything you’ve probably heard or read, but hear me out. My perspective comes from experience and years of watching other bloggers. It’s okay to not have a specific niche dialed in when you first start your blog. For most of us our niche will slowly come into view once we start blogging and find out what we are truly passionate about writing. For others, life changes and our blogs could start out one direction and take a completely different direction down the road.
FINDING YOUR VOICE
A lot of bloggers use the term “finding your voice” when you first start blogging. For those starting out, you have never blogged before. Expressing your thoughts to strangers and the general public could seem weird at first. You might mimic other bloggers you idolize because you relate to them and think that is the direction you want to go. As time goes on you start to discover your own voice. Trust me on this one. You’ll look back to your earlier posts and it will almost seem like a different person wrote them.
I don’t know about you, but what I was interested in 10 years ago is so not the case anymore. As the years pass your interests and viewpoints change and that’s okay. I’ve seen so many bloggers who have completely revamped their blogs when they had kids, became an exercise guru, or took up a new hobby. And you know what? They’re still wildly successful. It didn’t hurt their branding. Did they lose some followers? Probably. I know they gained a ton of new ones too though.
WE ALL WEAR MANY DIFFERENT HATS
If I sat down and listed out all the different qualities or things that made up my life it would be quite long.
- I work full time.
- I’m an archaeologist.
- I love discussing theory.
- I have a Master’s degree.
- I’ve done photography for years.
- I am super interested in marketing.
- I have a background in project management.
- I used to set up styled shoots for wedding vendors.
- I’m a huge wanderlust junkie and worked at a travel agency.
- I grew up with golden retrievers and have raised two of my own.
- I love craft beer and have a successful craft beer influencer IG page.
The list goes on and on. It would be extremely hard for any of us to focus so narrowly on a specific niche when our own lives contain so many different elements. None of our potential readers only focus on one topic in their lives, so why should we?
YOU CAN STILL FIND SOME FOCUS
Now, before you go haywire with the different hats example let me reel you back in for a moment. No, it’s not super important to establish a specific niche for your blog to be successful. You do still need to find some focus though. You need to pick topics that make sense for your blog and the vibe you’re trying to create.
When I first started my blog I was going with a general lifestyle theme. I was still working on finding my voice and seeing where my blog would head. Since then my focus has become more on advice and helping. I still blog about general lifestyle topics, but in a helpful way. For instance I might write about fashion in a “how to” post. Or I might write about tips on marketing and blogging. Sometimes I write about my travels giving advice on places to see. For me, my blog is about being a resource that my readers can go to for tips, suggestions, or ideas of their own. It’s also a place where I hope I can relate to my readers through my musings by building on common experiences and sharing stories. For now, I’m happy with the direction I am headed. That’s not to say I can’t change it up if I want to though.
A CASE STUDY
Now comes the fun part. I told you my perspective comes from experience and I am all about examples. I’ve seen lots of bloggers accomplish this over the years, but one of my favorites who I would like to highlight is my friend Cris from Kiss My Tulle. She is someone I still look to for advice and have learned so much from watching her experience with blogging.
I first met Cris in 2010 when I dove into the world of wedding blogging. Kiss my Tulle was a budget wedding blog that started in 2007 and re-branded into a lifestyle blog in 2016. For nine years, Kiss My Tulle only focused on weddings. Nine years, people!! That’s a long time. Kiss My Tulle is now a very successful lifestyle blog. Do you think experimenting and switching things up within the first year or two of your blog is really going to ruin things when she did a complete 180 after nine years? Nope!
Since I mentioned that I like examples and visuals, here’s a screen shot of what Kiss my Tulle used to look like when I first met Cris. Very budget wedding focused.
Here is what Kiss My Tulle looks like now. Focusing on wedding knowledge, pregnancy tips and tricks, parenting experience, fashion and beauty inspiration, travel stories, home improvement inspiration, DIYs, food, and health/fitness advice. Not to mention Cris’ witty humor. She’s hilarious if you haven’t checked out her posts before.
To sum everything up, it’s okay to not know exactly what you want your blog to be. It’s okay to set out in one direction or passion and then half way through decide you want to add in something new or completely change directions. Often times until we are doing the work we don’t really know if that is exactly what we want to be doing. Other times our original ideas might spark a completely different idea we hadn’t even thought of.
If you love writing as much as I do, then you understand that it’s a creative and evolving process. Writing should be a fluid process, a growing process, and a safe area to explore. There aren’t strict rules when it comes to putting your thoughts down on paper and there shouldn’t be super strict rules when it comes to blogging. Change is good. Change is inevitable. Change keeps you interesting. Embrace it when it hits and don’t worry too much about your audience. Some will stay, some will leave, and new readers will always find you.
Krissy lives in California with her family of three that make up “The Hadicks.” With a passion for research and helping others, The Hadicks was developed as a resource for other parents and parents-to-be!