Today we’re going to begin this series on Niche Blogging by taking a close look at who is reading your blog. Somewhere in the middle of all of these activities, you will have a lightbulb moment—when you determine exactly what your readers perceive your niche to be. The big question then is, “Is this the niche I want?” or, “Shall I endeavor to create a new niche?”
For this evaluation, you will need to set aside some time to carefully analyze all your social networks and site resources, directories, search engines, and even advertisers who may have collected data on your ad performance. Let’s take them one by one at the Workbook Page that I’ve created for you: Niche Clarification Resources. After you’ve read this post, join me there for some activities that will help you see what your readers see.
At my workbook page, you’ll be looking closely at what you can learn from:
- Your readers’ comments on your blog
- Technorati’s evaluation of your blog
- Your Klout Influence Score
- Demographics and site info from your Alexa account
- Blog directories you are registered with
- Your Facebook page
- Your Twitter page
- Your social sharing/bookmarking sites: Digg, Delicious, Stumble, etc.
- Analytics programs
- Embedded search programs such as Lijit
- Email subscriptions and RSS services
- Blog stats within your blogging platform
By the time you’ve finished the activities I offer at Niche Clarification Resources, you’ll have a better picture of how you are viewed by your readers. Whether or not this is the image you had hoped for, there is always the opportunity to remake yourself.
When I return in two weeks, I’ll have a new assignment for you. We’ll be looking at an extensive group of possible niche elements–a menu if you will–to do a little shopping from. We won’t be looking for Gucci or Ann Taylor; we’ll be seeking the specific-to-you, niche blogging choices that work for each of you at a very personal level.
This doesn’t mean you need to remake your blog, unless of course, you want to. Just as the butterfly starts as a caterpillar, your blog can also blossom into a thing of beauty that brings you great joy. Join me in two weeks for some consideration of themes you might wish to add to your niche, or morph your blog into. Let the growth begin.
Carrie Boyko writes All Things Dog Blog, where her spirited pack teaches her every day how to be a better pack leader.
Look for the next installment on May 27.
Hmmm…I just went into Klout and I think my score was 52…not very good……also joined Technorati but am waiting for the confirmation email…this is very interesting and useful info!
Caren: Read the write up on your networking style. The various sections of the quadrant are quite telling. You’ll learn a lot about your specific strengths in networking, as well as the ones you need to work on. I had plenty of those!
Carrie, great tips for the novice and seasoned blogger. TY!
The key to doing this exercise is “when I have time”. It seems I have none of that lately. I am behind three or four days on my blog readings alone. However, this looks like it will be very helpful in finding out where I am at so I can come up with a plan to get there I want so I will make time. Thanks for sharing.
No doubt it does take time, Jessica. Good luck.
These are really good ideas about figuring out who your audience is. There area few of these that I knew about, and others that I’d never heard of and are quite helpful. Thanks for the tips!
Great ideas! I think we can all aspire and work toward influencing a broader audience,and upping our “game” in content, and understanding what readers want. I was a little confused, though, by the thinking that a Klout score of 52 was “not so good”, in an earlier comment. Keith Olbermann has a 78. I think people need to better understand what these numbers mean and read what suggestions Klout makes for improving them before making value judgments that later frustrate them. It’s a marathon, not a sprint.