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How To Narrow Your Blog’s Focus

“It looks like we’re trying to boil the ocean here…”

You’re boiling the ocean when you mistakenly take on a task that is too big and broad for you to handle.  This happens when you aren’t clear about your goals.

For example, when I first started Pushing Social, I decided to write about marketing.  Marketing is a fascinating topic but it also is much too big to tackle with a blog.  The other problem is that there were already some gargantuan publications trying to dominate the space.  I’m I a confident guy, but I had to admit that Advertising Age, Mashable, and Fast Company had a huge headstart.

Understanding the challenge, I narrowed my focus to social media.
Social Media had a smaller audience and the competition wasn’t as entrenched.  But the niche was still too big to successfully influence.

I narrowed my focus still further to blogging.  Some have said (correctly) that the blog about blogging niche is still far too big to compete in.  But I believed my strategy could attract an engaged audience. Thankfully, I was correct.

How to Find Your Best Blogging Topic

Think about your topic.

What are the subtopics?
Example:  Beauty can be narrowed to hair styles or makeup

What are the distinct audience groups within your subtopic?
Example: Raising roses has at least two audience groups: 1) Beginners, 2) Expert – Prize rose growers

You can refine your focus still further by asking –

“Where is my audience getting their information now?”
Example: White collar fitness enthusiasts may do most of their “reading” at the gym while listening to podcasts. You can reach this audience by starting a podcast.

This is how the blog strategy may look for a niche authority blog:

Topic: Fitness
Subtopic: Adventure Fitness Fans (i.e. Spartan, Warrior Dash)
Audience Segment: Beginners
Media: Video

In this case, I recommend starting a vlog (video blog) with posts focusing on adventure fitness tips for beginners.

Here’s a real life example

Topic: Parenting
Subtopic: Entertaining Children
Audience: Imagination-challenged parents (especially Dad)
Media: Text

This is how Mike Stelzner successfully launched My Kid’s Adventures  a blog that helps parents find new ways to entertain the kids without resorting to using television as a baby sitter. Mike could have launched (yet) another parenting blog instead he found an underserved niche.

Can You Focus Your Blog Too Much?

Yes it is possible.

Your niche should be large enough to support your goals.  A business blog will need to reach an audience big enough to deliver leads and sales.  A personal blog should focus on an audience big enough to create a community of engaged readers.

I challenge you to study your blog’s performance.  It may be time to narrow your focus if you have been struggling for years to get traction with you blog.

About Stan

Stan Smith is the CEO of Pushing Social a content marketing consultancy for aggressive, results-focused organizations.

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