One of the most effective ways to specialize in freelance writing is to combine two different niches into one specialization.
For example, if you already have experience in social media marketing as well as SEO, it’s much easier for you to become a specialist writer who can handle more than one industry as it allows you to combine experience from both industries.
That’s exactly what I did when starting as a freelance writer. I was already proficient in web design and graphic design, which made it much easier for me to find clients in those niches.
So, how exactly do you find your specialization? How do you know if your chosen niche has good demand?
Let’s find out.
1. Figure Out Your Interests And Expertise
Step #1 is understanding yourself and what you’re actually good at.
Don’t go choosing a niche just because you think it’s profitable. If you don’t have an interest in the subject, you will never be able to become an expert at it.
If you enjoy video games, learn everything you can about games, dive deep into game development, find out all the methodologies and concepts used in games, talk to industry experts, watch interviews of game developers, and read books.
Simply put, you need to be fully obsessed with the topic.
So grab a cup of coffee, sit down, and think about what your interests are. Make a list of those interests and let’s move on to the next step.
2. Importance Of Research And Demand
Finding an interest is only the first step. You now need to make sure it has good demand in the freelance marketplace.
Not all your interests have demand in freelance writing. For example, you may enjoy stamp collecting but there are no jobs for writers who are expert stamp collectors. That’s why you should think about a few different interests before diving into research.
The easiest way to do market research is to use existing freelance marketplaces.
Browse sites like Upwork, Indeed, ProBlogger Jobs, and various other job boards. Search for jobs related to your interests and see how many job postings are available in that niche. If dozens of job postings pop up in search results, you have yourself a good niche.
3. Learn From Your Competitors
Once you pick a good niche to specialize in, you can take your research to the next level.
Look for established writers in your niche who are already experts at it. You can look for them on social media sites and even online publications.
Examine their work closely. Learn from their writing style, find out what type of websites they work for, their favorite books, what type of podcasts they listen to, and basically everything you can about them. And then shadow their every move.
Some freelance writers are kind and supportive. You could even send them an email and ask for advice. They will likely help you out. For example, my inbox is always open for beginning freelancers. Use the contact form on the website to reach out anytime.
4. Create Your Own Brand And Identity
Learning from your competitors is an important step in becoming a specialist. But, you should never make the mistake of copying them.
No one wants to hire a duplicate copy of a great writer, no matter how low you price your services.
So make sure to establish your own brand and identity. Take all the best qualities from your competitor writers and improve upon them. Then come up with your own writing style, your own ideology, and your own identity.
As Seth Godin, the author of Linchpin, says, “The only way to get what you’re worth is to stand out, to exert emotional labor, to be seen as indispensable, and to produce interactions that organizations and people deeply care about.”
5. Build Authority
One of the first things clients ask when you apply for freelance jobs is to see examples of your work.
You need to have an already established portfolio of your best work before you even apply for a freelance writing job. To do that, you need to do some hard work.
There are many ways you can build authority as a freelance writer. You can start by publishing guest posts on blogs and magazines related to your niche. You can write articles on LinkedIn. Create Tweet threads on Twitter. Or even build your own blog.
Also, consider setting up a personal website under your name to showcase all your work and skills. It will make the job easier to present all your best work to clients.
6. Expanding Into Related Niches
Remember what I said about combining two niches together earlier in the article? It’s time to explain that a bit further.
Once you’re proficient in your main niche, you can look for ways to expand your skills into other related niches.
If you’re writing about web design, learn about UX design. If you’re writing about graphic design, learn about AI art. If your main niche is SEO, learn about email marketing.
This is the key to becoming an indispensable freelance writer. As well as to expand your client base and earn more.
Your clients won’t be able to find another writer who writes about both these topics the same way as you do. No one will be able to replace you. Not even AI.
Before we wrap up the article, let’s summarize what we’ve learned today.
First, find topics you’re interested in and research the market demand. Then study your competitors and learn from them. And finally, build your authority and look for ways to expand into other niches.
This is the ultimate formula for finding your niche as a freelance writer and becoming a specialist writer in your niche.
But, don’t stop here. Continue to learn more about your niche and continue to practice your writing skills daily. Use sites like Skillshare to your advantage.
You can also check out my free guide on how to start freelancing to learn more about where to start your journey.
Images via Freepik.com