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Creating a Blog In a Niche You Know Nothing About

A guest post by Adam from Things To Learn.

I’ve been blogging for over two years now and I will be the first to admit that I haven’t been the best blogger in the world. Far from it. There were several stretches where I didn’t blog regularly or I wrote posts that just didn’t cut the mustard.

The blog that I was maintaining was in the ever crowded personal finance (PF) niche. Frankly, I know a lot about financial planning (I have a master’s in it) and I thought that I would thoroughly enjoy writing about it. Man was I wrong. If you ask any expert in the field, they will tell you that everything PF has already been written. In order to separate yourself from the hundreds of PF blogs out there, you have to put your own spin on the topics or just talk about your personal experiences. Well, I wasn’t that great at putting a spin on the topics and my wife and I don’t really live a fascinating financial life.

So, I slowly continued the blog. I stuck to it for about 2 years and decided that I just wasn’t having fun with it. I still enjoyed writing, but I was just burnt out writing about personal finance. I knew it was time for a change but I just didn’t know what. I don’t really have any hobbies and everything else just seemed so saturated already.

Blogging On Something You Don’t Know

As I was enjoying a nice walk around Washington DC with my wife, something caught my eye. None of the buildings were tall. I wondered what the deal was and figured that plenty of other people may have thought the same thing. I did some quick research at home and found out that there is some crazy law that doesn’t allow the buildings to be tall in the city. Weird.

After I learned about the topic, I had other random questions/things pop into my head and they just kept coming. An endless supply of blog posts! I wrote them down on a piece of paper with the title “Things To Learn”. I knew right then and there that I needed to create a blog on the topic. I was going from writing about things that I knew inside and out to something that I had no clue about. Why would I do that?

Why Should You Blog In a Niche You Know Nothing About

You Have An Almost Endless Supply of Blog Posts

Many great bloggers started writing about things that they wanted to know more about. For example, J.D. from Get Rich Slowly started his site when he was $35,000 in debt. Obviously, personal finance wasn’t his strong point at the time but he started the blog to learn more about the subject and it has now grown to one of the most popular blogs on the web. Heck, even Darren started this blog because he wanted to learn more about making money on the web.

Personally, I have been thinking about my new blog for weeks now. To date, I have approximately 100 “things to learn” in my WordPress drafts. You know what, the ideas keep coming too. Whether I am reading a book or having a conversation with a stranger, the thoughts keep flowing. You can do that with any niche too. Especially if you are constantly trying to learn more about it.

It Never Gets Old

Most new bloggers fizzle out after a few months because they feel like no one is listening. Hey, it happened to me a few months after I started. But, I stuck with it and my blog has made a few bucks here and there.

Believe it or not, I don’t really care if my new site has readers. I mean, there is a small part of me that likes the interaction but I am doing it more for me. I want to learn and blogging about things I am interested in gives me pleasure. The place that I want to get my interaction is from other sites like this one. I am saving some of my better posts for other blogs and I will be interacting with the readers here.

I think that by blogging in niche you know nothing about, it will be difficult run out of things to write. I mean, I bet it may get a little old after a while. If I had to guess, I would say that many of the bloggers that have been around for a long time will tell you that it’s starting to get old. I imagine the thought of quitting has crossed their mind. Even though they started out knowing nothing about the niche, now they do and it would get old. However, they are now probloggers and are making good money. How many small bloggers that burnt out posting about what they know can say that?

* * * * *

How many of you started blogging in a niche you know nothing about? Have you seen the same results that I mentioned? What other positives can you see with blogging in a niche you know nothing about?

Adam spends his time finding out what the closest city to the north pole is or what the largest country is. He enjoys learning new things every day and sharing them with those who are willing to listen.

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Comments

  1. Kaushik says:

    I agree. Blogging is a great way to learn. I have been already doing this with one of my blogs and it has been a great experience.

    BTW, I would love to see your Things To Learn blog.

  2. John Henderson says:

    I completely agree that you should start blog and sites in niches that you know nothing about. I have found that when you start blogs about things that you know nothing about, you don’t overlook fundamental details and information.

    If you already know a lot a particular subject, you are more likely to assume that your readers know it as well. If you are learning as you are writing about it, you tend to not overlook this type of information and can more easily connect with readers who are learning with you.

  3. When I started my blog it came out of an experience of receiving bad service from my Audi garage plus the fact I discovered that if you shop around for your car service you can save yourself lots of money. I mean loads of money.

    My blog deals with all car service and maintenance issues, and I have over 100 posts in the wing. I am a living proof to your article.

    Thanks for the great post Adam.

  4. Marina Shemesh says:

    I think this is a great idea. In the book “The Witch of Portobello” by Paulo Cuelho there was a similar idea – if you want to learn about something, teach it. Why not to share your journey of discovery with your students, or blog readers? The passion will be there automatically (as it is with new things or ideas) and your readers will keep you on your toes to keep on learning.

  5. Marty Herald says:

    Thank you! Reading your post this morning found myself humming the theme from Twilight Zone . . . I’ve been struggling to create a business in a particular niche simply because it was aligned with my “professional experience.” It made sense as far as credibility, and was clearly the path of least resistance, but I kept finding excuses to keep from working on it.

    Just yesterday I decided to change direction and dive into a niche on a subject I’m really interested in, but know nothing about and already I’ve got my blog and domain and have a draft of my first post, along with long list of topics I want to write about!

    It was great to ready about your experience, as well as the comments from your readers!

  6. Marty Herald says:

    Great post! Found myself humming the theme from Twilight Zone while reading it because just yesterday I decided to abandon a niche I’d been struggling with and start writing about a subject completely new to me. Reading about your experience and your readers comments was inspiring.
    Thanks!

  7. Alex Dumitru says:

    That’s very interesting and I’ve also blogged about things I have no idea about, though it’s a bit harder. In your example, it’s not like blogging about science without knowing absolutely nothing about it, it’s just a blog about curiosities.

  8. ali says:

    I admire your frankness, and you make perfect sense. It also gives us hope. We are web designers in hong kong. We created a site called lite.hk, which provides convenient links to information for hong kong mobile users. We recently attached a blog to write smart phone news with a hk focus. My friend is a gadget freak and loves to write about the hardware and so on. Me, although a web designer, am a total technophobe. I was concerned that it is wrong to write about something that i’m not into, but i do secretly feel that there are many like me, and the angle is one that will be sympathised with.

    one issue though: we can find ourselves rehashing other peoples hard-won articles. Isn’t this a bit of an issue with writing about things you don’t know about?

  9. One of my the first blogs I ever created is still one of my favorites. It’s all about mental fitness, brain health, and improving your memory and mind. When I launched the site, I knew very, very little about the subject but I was (and am) completely fascinated by it.

    Over the years, the site has brought in a nice income, I’ve made a lot of interesting friends online, and I’ve learned SO MUCH! I’ve honestly turned myself into an expert in a fascinating field through research, reading, and more research.

    Great post and I really like your site a lot. I often point out educational sites to my readers on Out of Bounds as well as Self Help Daily (selfhelpdaily.com) – I’ll have to pass along your link.

  10. Will says:

    Sometimes I find that if I blog about something which becomes a daily routine for me, like something related to my job which I may dislike initially, but however, as I blog about it and share my ideas, it may instead turn into a interesting topic of discussion. Somehow my different view is that, whether you do or do not know about that niche, blogging makes you feel attached to it.

  11. M. Hawk says:

    Personally, finding a topic that you know a fair amount about, but are not an expert in, has been the most interesting blogging for me. It insures that you are always learning, and results in that extra enthusiasm sometimes needed.

  12. Marc says:

    Not knowing much about my first site was definitely the case. I started it in 2008 to help people learn what they needed to know before buying mobile broadband.

    Now, if you search for the term “Mobile Broadband”, I’ve got #9 spot along with the #1 spot for many other keywords.

    If you play your cards right, research your niche, deliver valuable content, the traffic and rankings come. With the traffic, comes the opportunity to build a relationship with your audience and provide products or services that’ll help ‘em.

    In some ways I feel like I lucked out considering it was my first website. I’m “hoping” to get luck again by playing my cards right with my 2nd site.

    The only difference is the 1st was static html while the 2nd is a wordpress blog. From everything I’ve been reading here, it seems like there’s a lot of ‘do’s’ & ‘don’t’s’ of blogging.

    Any tips from experienced bloggers out there?

  13. Nikunj says:

    Thanks Adam, this gave me a confidence, I have purchased a domain for which i wanted to start a blog, but i was not knowing anything about the topic, so was unwilling to take it forward, but by reading your post it has given me the confidence to move forward.

    Thanks Mate:)

  14. I think the thing that made this particular blog project of mine take off was the fact that I’m constantly learning about other people’s experiences, and that’s an integral part of what the blog’s about. But now I’m trying to think of something I want to learn about that would make a good blog. Damn you people for making me think all the time! ;-)

  15. Jan says:

    I like the idea to blog about a topic you don’t know much about yet. There are many things I don’t know very well and I think it would be fun to change this by blogging about these topics.

    But I believe you still need a very clear focus that is easy to describe in a few words. Everyone how is also interested in such a topic will also have similar questions. If you can solve these questions proballly some people will like your blog.

    I often read you should be blogging about things you know well. I guess its more important to write about things you are very interested in – even if you don’t know much about it yet.

    Thanks for this article. It was a pleasure to read it.

  16. riya lalwani says:

    This is a new thing which i have seen that to write on something about which you don’t know.

  17. Great post, and Adam’s site looks interesting. Usually people say to choose your passion as your niche, but lately I feel I’m short on passions. I want to start a new site or two, but it’s hard to choose a new subject matter that I know a lot about. This post definitely gives me something to think about

  18. Personally, finding a topic that you know a fair amount about, but are not an expert in, has been the most interesting blogging for me. It insures that you are always learning, and results in that extra enthusiasm sometimes needed.

  19. I accidentally found a new niche to write about because my husband just found out he has Celiac and needs to stop eating anything with gluten (wheat) in it. I know nothing about being gluten free but as I learn I am sharing the info on my blog, maybe others are having the same questions and if I can help that would be great.

  20. Chris says:

    Another way to view it is that as we begin our blog post we know very little about our subject.. However as we research the subject and develop our post to go along with it we then have gained the knowledge. We are therefore helping others in their research, as we answer things we research and present our findings to our readers..

    Just my take and method

  21. Annie says:

    I found myself blogging about going through my storage situation not only to blog about something I don’t have expertise in, but also to have a record of accomplishment when the going gets tough. Over time, one does gain experience. Its just one story and one story does not necessarily equal expertise.