FACT: At some point or another, every freelancer hits a plateau in their career and needs to niche. One common reason for the standstill is that they haven’t niched down as a freelancer yet. While there are plenty of clients who will work with a generalist, people who really value knowledge and experience will seek out a specialist to help them solve their problems.
Think of it this way: If you’re training for a marathon and want a fitness coach to help you get to the finish line, do you choose a trainer who knocks out 10 marathons a year and has a decade of experience coaching runners or, do you pick the trainer who dabbles in cross-fit, cycling and running depending on the client? Picking the experienced marathoner seems like the no-brainer, right?
Similarly, deciding on a specialty keeps your business in growth mode by providing customers with more targeted services.
Here are 4 tips to help you select a niche that boosts your earning potential.
Tip #1: Take Stock of What You Love
It’s always easier to go to work when you enjoy what you do. Needless to say, taking stock of what you love is a great place to start narrowing down your niche.
Make a list of the topics you enjoy the most. Don’t worry about how much you actually know about the topic, how much you think the niche will pay or any other logistics. Just focus on the things that make you happy.
Tip #2: Factor in Your Knowledge
Now, think about the areas in which you’re already knowledgeable. Maybe you have experience working in a certain industry. Maybe you spent a lot of time studying a specific topic in school. Or maybe you’ve dedicated a lot of time to a particular hobby over the years.
While you definitely don’t have to go into a niche that you’re already familiar with, it can make your job a lot easier and should be something to consider.
Tip #3: Look at the Market
Next, take your ideas and consider the current marketplace. Some industries are much bigger and more popular than others.
For example, someone who writes copy for the gaming industry will probably find more opportunities than someone who’s writing about the care of an exotic pet. You might also want to research what types of niches typically make more money.
Tip #4: Make Your Move
No matter what specialty you decide on, it’s time to put your effort into establishing yourself as an industry expert.
Focus on finding opportunities in that area to start getting more experience. The more experience you gain now, the better.
Finding a specialty that suits you is a key part of building a business that really thrives. To pick a niche, think about what you love, consider what you already know and conduct some market research. Then, make your move and ditch the generalist approach.
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