K.I.S.S. Websites – Lesson 2
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Lesson 2 – Niche/Topic Selection
In this lesson we look at the process of deciding what exactly the focus of your website is going to be. If you already “know” what you want to do, or already have a website – congratulations! I still highly recommend you read through this lesson! You should gain some valuable insights regardless.
I’ve always felt that “passion” a HUGELY important factor for deciding not only what type of websites you build, but just generally what sorts of activities, “career” etc you choose in life. Although I haven’t always taken my own advice, it’s only because I pursued my passions that I am here writing this lesson today (LONG story – for another time!).
But here’s the thing…
The idea that you should blindly chase your passions and hope for the best is definitely NOT the message I want to leave you with here!
Yes, passion is very important – but when it comes to creating websites that will earn you money, and/or help you help others – you are likely going to need to take things a bit further during the topic selection process.
Let’s say for example that you LOVE Peruvian basket weaving (I have no idea if that’s a real thing – my apologies, in advance, for any offence I may cause to the wonderful people of Peru! lol). It’s your brand new obsession in life. You learned about it at an arts and crafts expo, and were able to find one book about it at the local library.
Naturally, you might assume that this would be a fantastic topic to base a website on.
Let’s say you love LOTS of different things right now – cooking, movies, rock climbing…heck, you’re just LOVING LIFE! So why limit yourself? How about creating a one-size-fits-all website about everything you are involved in?
As you might guess – neither of these approaches are recommended…for anything other than a completely fun hobby website.
The problem with the first example is that is ultra-focused (which can actually be a really good thing) – but focused on a topic that likely not that many other people have heard about! If I’m wrong about this please feel free to let me know! lol
The second example illustrates the complete opposite end of the spectrum! I’m sure most of you have heard the phrase “Jack of all trades, master of none” – well that’s what you’re going to be if you try to create a website about anything and everything. Other than sympathetic friends and family members, you likely won’t be able to build any sort of serious following – unless of course you happen to be an exceptionally gifted writer and/or your life is utterly compelling.
The formula for finding good website topics is as follows
Passion + Talent/Experience/Knowledge + Demand = Good Choice!
What do you LOVE?
What are you GOOD AT? What do you KNOW ABOUT?
Of these areas – which ones are lots OTHER PEOPLE interested in?
Before we explore this further, I should mention that you CAN be super passionate about something, but fairly new to it, and still make it work as a topic (assuming other people are interested as well). Many successful websites have charted the journeys of those trying to learn new skills – but typically the knowledge and skills come into play in other ways! Some of you may be familiar with the movie Julie and Julia (starring Meryl Streep and Amy Adams). It is based on the story of Julie Powell, a woman who cooked every recipe in Julia Child’s “Mastering the Art of French Cooking” book in a year while blogging about it.
For starters, the concept itself was very unique and interesting at the time – but aside from being creative, Julie Powell also happens to be an excellent writer. So, even though she wasn’t really a talented cook at the beginning, she was easily able to draw people in.
What I’m trying to get at here is that you don’t need to be an expert on the topic itself – but somehow applying your skills/experience/knowledge to the project in OTHER ways will definitely make a big difference!
“What to Do When ‘All of the Good Ideas are Already Taken’ – Tips to Help You Pick a Niche” (Smart Passive Income)
“How to Determine the Potential Size of Your Content Marketing Opportunity” (Copyblogger)