When you are finding a niche for your YouTube channel, you are looking for a subset of a genre, subject, or topic to make videos about.
A niche can be broad like a channel about traveling.
Or more focused such as a channel only about traveling for food.
Then it can be hyper-focused such as a channel only about traveling for street food.
When people talk about “niching down,” they mean getting more focused on an area of a broader topic.
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Why Do You Need a Niche on YouTube?
Having a niche differentiates your channel from all the other ones on YouTube. There is no denying the crowded space on the video platform. Every minute, 300 hours of video is uploaded to YouTube. If you were simply copying other YouTubers, it will be challenging to grow, as your content will be in the shadows of all the other ones.
By having a consistent niche, your channel will be more coherent for those who discovered your awesome content and wants more related videos. If you don’t have a clear focus on your YouTube channel, it will be confusing for your potential fans.
For example, if you created a great video about painting, but your channel also contains videos with you playing video games, doing movie commentaries, and cooking recipes, then the viewer who discovered your painting video wouldn’t subscribe to you because she has no interest in the other topics your channel covers.
In a specialized niche, you can own it and become an expert on the topic. Increasing your credibility will allow you to build trust much faster with your audience and therefore, grow at a much faster rate.
Finding Your Niche on YouTube
What Is Your Objective On YouTube?
Do you want to make money? Do you want to fuel a passion? Do you want to educate the masses?
Your intentions on YouTube can be a numbers game: you want to get views, subscribers, and make money.
Or perhaps your intentions on YouTube can be to make content for a specific audience so that you can build a community.
Moreover, you might be using YouTube as the platform to showcase your personal brand and develop a reputation that you can bring to the real world.
Once you have a clear objective for what you want to achieve on YouTube, then you can consider the tactical direction to take your channel in: finding a niche and creating content for it.
What is Your Passion?
Building a YouTube channel is a grind and if you are not passionate about the topics you are covering in your niche, you may not have the motivation needed to churn out videos day after day, week after week.
Think of the things that you can do for hours without getting bored. Think of the hobbies you have where you put in hours and hours to improve. Think about all the research you’ve done on a given topic for no other reason than satisfying your own curiosity. These can all help you understand what you are most passionate about.
Knowing your passion opens an avenue for you to travel down in discovering your niche. But the journey isn’t over yet… there are few more questions to ask:
What Are Your Expertises?
Over the course of your life, you have gained experiences and skills — and you might not even know it. Stop for a moment and take inventory of everything that you feel you know better than the average person.
While the term “expert” is subjective, consider this, what can you pick up and do without a guide or a manual, or what can you tell me without Googling or researching?
If you can sit at a piano and start playing beautiful music, you have expertise in it. If you can tell me off the top of your head what train and bus to take to get across town, you are an expert in your city. Your expertise is what you confidently know.
What Do People Know You For?
If you are having trouble finding your expertise, ask those who are close to you: What am I best known for?
If your friends tell you that you are known for being athletic, then that might be an area to explore. If your classmates tell you that you are always punctual, you might be an expert in time management.
Sometimes it takes someone else to tell you what your strengths and weaknesses are.
Once you’ve recognized what you are an expert on, you can expand on it.
Ask yourself these questions about your expertise:
- Can I teach people what I know?
- Will I want to learn more about this topic?
- Does this knowledge solve problems or improve life?
Once answered, you are that much closer to identifying your niche. But there is still another major question:
What Are Your Audience’s Wants and Needs?
If you are passionate about and an expert on a topic, but the topic is not interesting or useful to anyone then you are going to have a tough time getting views on YouTube.
When it comes down to it, your content needs to do at least 1 of 3 things, but if you strive to have all 3, you’ll have the recipe for a successful video:
Educate Your Audience
Your audience wants to learn how to solve a problem or answer a question. If your content can teach, it will be valuable because it has real-world applications. (example: How-tos, product reviews, etc.)
Entertain Your Audience
Your audience wants to be entertained. Remember, when a viewer is watching your content, they are choosing it over all the books, movies, and music in the world. You have their attention, so don’t be boring. (example: Daily vlogs, commentary, etc.)
Inspire Your Audience
Your audience might be looking for a community to support them as they attempt a new goal. YouTube is a great platform to encourage others to do their best and achieve more. (example: 30-day challenges, motivational talks, etc.)
Don’t pick a niche simply because of general interest in a topic. If your niche comes to you in a flash and you go: “That’s a good idea,” before you set up your YouTube channel and commit to this video project, sit down, do some research, write out a script, and actually film the initial video. Go through the process and know what you are getting into.