Welcome to Post #1 in the Series: How to Earn Passive Income with Affiliate Links as a Writer
Today, we’re talking niches: What are they, how to create your own, and why niches are vital for affiliate marketing.
What is a niche?
According to BusinessDictionary.com, “niches do not ‘exist’ but are ‘created’ by identifying needs, wants, and requirements that are being addressed poorly or not at all by other firms, and developing and delivering goods or services to satisfy them.”
Let’s unpack that wordy sentence a little.
- A niche is a topic or product created for a target audience
- A niche offers the target audience something they want that they aren’t currently getting from current topics or products
- A niche keeps the target audience coming back for more
You may be wondering: Why create a niche at all?
The answer: People tend to purchase products through affiliate links from reviewers or bloggers they trust.
The way to gain buyers’ trust? Show them you understand what they want and know how to give it to them. You do that through niche marketing.
Also, if you want to actually make money with affiliate links, you need to give people a reason to pick your blog over the billion others on the internet.
Uncertain where to begin? Read on.
How to Create Your Niche
If you want to start making money with affiliate marketing, you need a blog. Before you start designing that blog, though, you need a niche audience to design it for.
Here are six steps you can take to create your own niche website.
- Identify the audience you want to target
- Research your competition
- Analyze what your competitors are doing that you could do better OR Analyze what’s missing from your competitors’ approach that your audience would appreciate
- Based on the above analyses, you should now have an idea for your niche
- Create high-quality content in your newly created niche
- Identify weaknesses in your niche through continued analysis of your own blog
What other qualities should you look for in a niche?
- interest – you should have a lot to say about your niche topic or product
- audience – make sure feel comfortable engaging with your target audience
- marketable products – make sure there are affiliates related to your niche
For that last one, Post #3 in this series will be a deep dive into choosing profitable niches. Stay tuned.
Case Study: Book Reviews
To make the idea of the niche a little easier to understand, let’s create a niche topic in the book review market.
For instance, let’s say you want to start a website where you review Young Adult fiction new-releases. You choose Young Adult because you know from your research that 18-29 year-olds consume more books than any other age group and tend to reach for YA.
Further, you know you want to write about YA new releases in the Fantasy genre. This is not only because you read a lot of YA Fantasy and have a lot to say about it but also because you interact with the YA Fantasy reading community.
Now, you know you want to review newly released YA Fantasy books. You know your target audience is 18-29 year-olds who read YA Fantasy. How do you find your niche?
Ask your YA fantasy loving friends what they’re missing from the book review sites they follow. Create a Twitter poll, start a Reddit forum, see what people are searching for with Google Trends.
As with all research the more quality results, the better.
Once the polls are in, analyze your data and see if there are any common themes among your target audience.
Maybe they want more reviews of self-published YA Fantasy books. Maybe they only want reviews about YA Fantasy mermaid stories.
Using your research, you should have a few ideas for your niche.
The final step before you can get to work on that website is to make sure there are affiliate products related to your niche.
Book reviewing is easy because Amazon has a great affiliate program. Include your affiliate marketer link in the book review and you’ll be on your way to making passive income in no time.
So there you have it! Drop by next Saturday for Post #2: Are You Qualified to Write in Your Niche? Leave a comment and let me know how your niche market research is going.