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Niche Writing And How To Succeed In It
A World of Unlimited Choices
I went to the grocery store the other day to pick up some toothpaste. I found the right aisle, found the right section and then was stopped dead in my tracks by the overwhelming number of selections to choose from. Not only were there countless brand names to choose from, but each brand name had four or five different choices, leaving me confused and frustrated to the point that I didn’t want to even brush my darn teeth.
Welcome to the world of writing. How many writers are there? I would venture to guess millions. How many readers are there? Most likely the number is in the billions. So we have billions of readers sifting through millions of books and articles, and remember that the average attention span of most readers is about ten seconds. Within ten seconds the average reader will spot something that he or she considers worth reading. The rest of the writings will sit patiently, or not so patiently, awaiting their chance to be read.
Are you a writer? If so, do you find all of this a bit discouraging? If you are asking how in the world your work will ever stand out, then you are not alone. Writers love to write, but they also love to have someone read what they are writing, for without recognition of some sort a writer is just a journal keeper.
If you have been paying attention to earlier articles of mine, you will know that I am a big believer in finding a niche. With a niche, or special category, you are lowering the odds against you a bit. Instead of competing with millions of writers, with a niche you are only competing against the thousands who write about a particular subject. Much better you say but still daunting, and I agree with you.
That is why you need some marketing strategies so that your name becomes synonymous with your particular niche, and then you will not only experience the joy of writing but also the joy of recognition. Now wouldn’t that be lovely?
Follow along, then, while I give you some strategies to think about.
An Expert in Your Field
What are your qualifications for writing about this niche subject? Readers want to know that you have game. In other words, they want to know that are you knowledgeable and have the expertise about your subject. Otherwise, what you say has no value.
If you write about crafts then explain to people what makes you a craft guru. If you write about RVing or acting or beauty products or used cars, you need to have some information that portrays you as an expert worth paying attention to.
I have written often about adoption, alcoholism, teaching and the Decade of the 60’s, and I have the resume to back up what I write about. Do you? If so then find a way to let others know that.
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Give Readers a Reason Why They Should Read Your Work
Stop and think about this fact for a moment. Why do people read anything? Whether it be for pure entertainment or because they want information on a particular subject, the fact is that when they read they receive something that has value to them.
What value are they going to receive from your writing? If you can answer that question, and then relate that value to the reader, you just might see your views increase.
Using myself for an example, I would say something like this: If you read this article on enabling, you will find out how to deal with the alcoholic in your life, and possibly begin to see positive change in your own life as well. In that statement I have given the reader a concrete value in reading my article.
Remember as you write what you are giving the reader and then find a way to portray that to your readers.
How Do I Improve the Lives of My Readers?
What tangible results do I create for my readers? Remember that this is all about value. You are providing a value and the reader is receiving a value. For a niche writer, this should be a primary motivator while writing.
If I have portrayed myself as an expert in my field, and I tell you that I am going to improve your life through my article, would you be interested in reading it? Of course you would, and so will your readers.
Use Specific and Emotional Language
Which of the following two statements sounds better to you:
- I am going to make you a better writer
- Through my articles on writing, I am going to increase your love of writing and fill you with the passion and knowledge you need to succeed.
Hopefully you chose the second statement. Seeing it in practice shines a light on it, does it not? Remember that writing incorporates our senses in the telling of a tale or the sharing of information. If I can somehow make my writing an emotional experience for my readers, I will have taken a huge step towards vast readership.
Develop a Tagline to Be Used on All of Your Correspondence
What is a tagline? As much as I dislike Walmart, their tagline of “Save Money. Live Better,” is pure genius. In four simple words they have told the world what they are all about, and they have done it in a way that appeals to our emotions and our basic needs.
Now, what is your brand and what is your tagline?
Some names become synonymous with the brand they are marketing. Names like Martha Stewart, Dave Ramsey and Dr. Phil are easily recognizable for home decorating, personal finance, and counseling.
So again, what is your brand as a writer and what is your tagline?
A few months ago I started a movement called Humanity One World. The tagline is “Making this world a better place one person at a time.” Clear, concise, intriguing and informative, that tagline tells you quite a bit about our movement. If I were to construct a tagline for my “how to write” articles it might be something like “Helping writers to spread their wings and soar.”
Once you have identified your brand and your tagline, it should become part of your signature and should appear on all of your correspondence. This is the marketing that we all hate to do, but if you want to establish yourself as a quality writer in your niche, this is necessary.
The Numbers Don’t Lie
Yes, there are millions of writers and yes, the odds are against you. That does not mean, however, that you should roll over and play dead. If you are serious about this writing business and you want to succeed, you need to learn a few things about marketing, and the primary product that you are marketing is you.
You are the brand, so now your job is to make everyone out there want to purchase (read) your brand.
Best of luck to you! If you need clarification or if I can be of any other help, feel free to contact me at email@example.com.
2013 William D. Holland (aka billybuc)