You can find it at this intersection.
“How can I decide on my writing niche?” is a question a lot of people ask when they decide to start writing.
The thing is, you don’t decide on your niche.
You discover it through writing.
The beauty of starting a writing career is that you can start anywhere.
It wasn’t until 50 articles in that I discovered my niche. And once I stuck to my niche of learning and education, my audience grew exponentially.
So how do you find your writing niche for audience growth?
In essence, you need to find the intersection of what you’re curious about and what people want to read from you. The following lines reveal how you find answers to both.
1) How to Discover What You Like Writing About
First, you want to experiment with as many topics as possible and monitor yourself.
When I started writing, I wrote about everything I felt curious about. Some articles felt challenging, while others seemed to flow naturally.
While I enjoy talking about relationship forms (I run a weekly German podcast with my partner), it turns out I hate writing about them. But if I hadn’t tested all the ideas, I wouldn’t have known now what I enjoy writing about.
How you can apply this:
Make an idea list with your answers to the following questions: What do you like to talk about? Where do you have work expertise? What topics evoke strong emotions inside of you? What are you curious about?
These questions can help you in the very beginning. Don’t forget you’ll only know what you enjoy writing about if you do the writing. Commit to testing and trying as many different fields as possible to gain clarity about your true writing interest.
2) How to Discover What People Like Reading from You
After you’ve written at least 20 articles on different topics, you can take a look at your statistics.
But not before.
In the beginning, focus on only two things — the number of your published articles and the hours you spent per article.
“Data doesn’t lie. But data is also a reflection of the external crowd, and not necessarily your internal compass.”— Nicolas Cole
If you don’t already have many articles published, Medium stats (and for the record, any stats) won’t tell you a lot. You can’t derive meaningful data from five articles or a few hundred reads.
While some metrics are worth thinking about, others are negligible. The number of claps won’t tell you a lot. You also shouldn’t bother about the number of views or the number of your followers.
The metric “views” is a great indicator of the quality of your headlines. “Reads” show you how many people actually read your article after they’ve clicked on it. “Reading time” shows how much time people, on average spent reading our piece.
How you can apply this:
Once you’ve published about 50–100 articles, look at the data. Your goal is to find patterns. Which headlines worked particularly well?
Filter your stories by views and reads. Are there any recurring topics in your most-read stories?
You don’t need to worry if your writing doesn’t appeal to a broad audience. You can write for a small niche until you pay attention to their needs and learn what they want to read from you.
What to Keep in Mind
Don’t worry if your niche isn’t straightforward for you. Most writers had no clue about their niches when they started, including me.
And that’s alright.
The beginning of the writing journey is a lot of experimenting. Don’t worry about your niche in the first year of your writing.
Try out the things that feel good to you. Experiment first, and analyze what people like reading from you only in a second step.
Above all, enjoy the writing process and reflect on how you feel while discovering different topics.
Subscribe for a free 5-day course on how you can set up the single most important thing writers usually forget to attract a large audience online, with a total time investment of only 20 minutes.