Are you leading your niche or scrambling to share the next hot topic? Are you sharing what nobody else is or are you following the crowd and writing about what everyone else is writing about?
I see a lot of this in my niche. When you blog about blogging and making money online, the competition is FIERCE, so when a trend starts heating up (say…PINTEREST) everyone starts writing about it. The topic is covered ad nauseam with blog posts, reports, checklists, how-tos, ebooks (both free and paid), videos, and podcasts.
I don’t mean to sound like I’m dumping on this. I’m not; because what I care about is that the person who wants to know all about something actually finds out how to do it, one way or another.
It’s all fine and well to write up a blog post about Pinterest or any other hot topic.
But what I want you to do is be aware of what others in your niche aren’t doing!
It’s called being “counter-culture.”
Blogging in this manner, you’re better equipped to spot hot topics and trends before they become so!
It’s like the product adoption cycle…
There’s a process:
- You have the innovators – they’re talking about things before they’re hot, creating awesome products before anyone even knows they need them
- Next up are the early adopters – those are your iPhone friends that have to have it the moment it’s released; those are the people who requested invitations to be able to share on Pinterest because they learned about a fun new social media platform
- Then you have the majority – both early and late; this is where most of us hang out in the process and to relate it to Pinterest right now, we are most definitely in this phase
- And, finally, we have decline – the flame begins to die out and what once was hot, people begin to forget about unless something is done to create a fresh new perspective (renewal, innovation!)
So what does this mean for us? Well, we can take this process and apply it to the topics we write about. Ideally, you want to write topics in the “early adoption” and “majority” phases. You want to strike while the iron is hot.
And you want to bring a fresh perspective and unique content to your audience, so innovation is also important.
How can you overdeliver on your topic? How can you create MORE VALUE? How can you offer something that hasn’t been offered before?
This is hardly easy but if you can do it, your readers will be drawn to you and your blog like bees to honey!
What Does it Mean to Be a Counter-Culture Blogger?
Now that you know where I’m coming from, I’d like you to consider something:
What happens when everyone is talking about something? It could be “how to get traffic” or “how to get your first 1,000 email subscribers” or “how to _________________ on Facebook/Twitter/Pinterest” (I got stuck on a how-to thing there, but it’s the topics themselves I’m talking about.)
Here’s what happens: flooding.
The topic gets flooded and this is not only bad for us but also for our readers who become so confused and overwhelmed because…yeah, they get answers to what they’re looking for but it’s all over the place and it’s redundant – sometimes even conflicting – and they get stalled.
However, suppose we write with clarity, purpose, and a fresh perspective.
Sure, we cover the content people want to know, but we spin it in a way that is completely unique to us. Maybe we even find a new way of doing things we can share or a new technique that changes the whole game for our readers.
Not only do we attract new, potentially loyal, happy readers but we also set ourselves apart as a leader in our niche.
And when we take this even further and blog about what others are NOT blogging about? That’s when we are coming from a place of counter-culture leadership, which is so powerful because that opens up the opportunity to become an innovator.
For more great tips about standing out in your niche, I encourage you to grab your copy of my free ebook, Blog Easy: Niche Authority!
You’ll get the download link immediately and you’ll receive lots of other free goodies and resources you can check out.
PLUS, you’ll be signed up to receive my newsletter where I share V.I.P. info and you get the scoop on blog updates, tips, techniques, and other cool stuff.
When we are talking about topics that others aren’t – even if they’ve been covered before – we automatically stand out simply because we are doing something different.
Another way of being a counter-culture leader is to take an opposing perspective on a popular topic. Let’s say everyone is blogging about how important it is to create your own products (it is, and BIG HINT: this is probably the next big topic) suppose YOU come up with a unique way of increasing affiliate income and blog about THAT?
Let’s get out of the “make money blogging” niche and talk lifestyle blogging. Is everyone blogging about bullet journaling? By all means, cover that topic, but also discuss an alternative journal/planning system and why that’s a better choice.
See where I’m going with this?
Maybe you’re a food blogger and you notice that everyone is blogging about 15-minute meals…how about YOU blog about 5-ingredient meals?
It’s Not Just About the Topics
Now that you have an idea of this type of leadership, let’s talk about how you can apply it to techniques.
For instance, one popular blogging technique is the round-up post. Also known as curated content, this post contains a collection of resources that lead your readers to relevant content. It could be 25 freezer meal ideas or 10 ways to organize a small closet…
But what if you came up with a different way of sharing this kind of content?
What if you actually took each tip and implemented it? Or did a review on each technique?
See, you’re still curating and sharing content that you’ve discovered, but you’re doing it in a very different way – a way the majority of others are not.
In a nutshell, I’m encouraging you to look for the holes in your niche. You should absolutely cover the hot topics people are searching for but you can also find topics to cover that others are ignoring. Write about that stuff, too.
Don’t be afraid to be contrary! Ask yourself why everyone is covering a particular topic or why others are writing in a certain way…and then ask, “What would I write about if I took the opposing perspective on this?” or simply, “If everyone is doing X, what would happen if I did Y?”
Create content like this and you will definitely stand out in your niche as a counter-culture leader!