A lot of newcomers to niche marketing get very excited about the prospect and skip this stage. While
we understand the excitement, it is not a good idea to go into a niche that you cannot be passionate
about or has very little opportunity to make money.
Identify your Passions
There is a lot of information out there about choosing a niche market and most of them will tell you to follow your passions. If you are really passionate about something then this makes a lot of sense as you will be very motivated to make it work.
But it doesn’t always work. If you have a passion for a niche but the size of that niche is really small, and the people in it rarely buy anything, then you are just wasting your time. Finding a niche that you could get passionateabout is another story and we will discuss this later on.
We agree that it makes a lot of sense to enter a niche market that you are passionate about. Remember at this stage you are just compiling a list of possible niche ideas. In the next chapter we will look at how you can test each idea for viability.
So we recommend that you identify the subjects that really interest you first.
What are you really passionate and knowledgeable about?
Get yourself a pen and paper and start to write down the things that you are interested in. Do not make any judgments at this stage.
If you find yourself struggling here then ask yourself these questions:
- What hobbies do I have?
- What sports am I interested in (if any)?
- How do I spend my free time?
- What do I like to read about (online and offline)?
- What TV programs really interest me?
- What magazine subscriptions do I have?
- What would I really miss in my life if I couldn’t participate in it or read about it?
- What problems do I have at the moment?
- What things do I look for when I search online?
- What would I like to learn more about?
- What skills do I want to develop?
- What could I improve in my life?
This is just a small sample of the questions that you can ask yourself.
What you are doing here is looking introspectively to see what really interests you?. It is likely that a few things will be significantly
more interesting than others such as hobbies, sports, TV etc. Again do not make any pre-judgments.
After spending just a few minutes doing this you should be able to create a fairly long list. If you are still struggling to come up with a lot of ideas at this point then don’t worry because there are other steps you need to take.
Put your Marketing Hat on
Now it’s time to look at the world from a marketing perspective. When you do this you will be able to come up with even more ideas even if you have no interest in them at the moment. Don’t worry about this, just write the ideas down.
You are going to play detective here. You need a pen and notebook or a mobile device where you can
jot down or record ideas. It is best to start doing this at the beginning of a new day. As you progress
through your day make a note of the following:
- Any problems that you encounter
- Things around you that attract your attention
- The kinds of conversations you have with other people
- What was on TV that appealed to you
- The products and services you use
- Things that make you happy
- Things that make you angry or sad
- Activities you participate in
Determine a time to stop recording these things. Then take a look at each one you have made a record
of and ask the following questions:
- Are other people interested in the same things?
- Are people spending money to do these things?
- What kind of problems do you and others face?
- What things really made you happy / excited?
- What things made you angry / sad / frustrated?
What is working right now?
There are a lot of different websites that you can look at that will tell you what the current trends are and which niche markets are working right now. By visiting these websites you can come up with more potentially profitable niche marketing ideas.
You can use Amazon to see if there is commercial intent for your niche ideas. Just go to Amazon.com and then enter your seed keyword. So let’s continue with our example of “Paleo diet”.
There are not going to be a lot of physical products for the Paleo diet as it is all about food choices.
What we did find is a lot of books and some of them with a high number of reviews. The review count is important as people that actually buy the products leave them.
It is generally accepted that a single review on Amazon means that at least 10 people purchased the product and as many as 1,000. Only a small number of people will leave a review so if there are hundreds or even thousands of reviews then this is a good sign of commercial intent.
So run the remaining niche ideas through Amazon and look out for review numbers.
Ideally you want at least 100 reviews for a product to suggest good commercial intent. There will be related products as
well and you can check the review numbers for these too.
As you know Clickbank is the number one market place for digital products. So go to Clickbank.com and enter your seed keyword in the “Affiliate Marketplace” section. The first thing to do is to note the number of products available. For “Paleo diet” there were over 40 products available at the time of writing which is a good sign of commercial intent.
You can refine your search by changing the results to show the highest gravity. This is a measure of the number of sales of a particular product by affiliates in the last week. The top Paleo diet product in Clickbank has a gravity of over 65 and there are others with a gravity of around 50. This is all good as it shows sales are happening in this niche.
Another good test to see if a niche has commercial intent is to check for Google Ads when performing
a Google search. So we used Google to perform a search for “Paleo diet” and found a number of ads.
You can also check this using the Google Keyword Planner. When you get the results back you will see a column called “Competition”. This is the competition for ads and if you see examples of medium or
high competition this means that money is being spent on ads.
Google ads are not cheap and you can easily pay $1 and upwards a click for the best keyword terms.
Advertisers would not be spending this money if there was no commercial intent in their niche.
Other Commercial Intent Methods
There are a number of affiliate networks where you can find out which products are selling well. Two of the most popular networks are Commission Junction and Share A Sale. Both of these networks have
analytics to show you the best EPC (earnings per click) values and network earnings.
It is not essential that you use these networks to validate the commercial intent of your niche ideas.
They are just useful to further validate an idea. You will need to become a member of Commission Junction to use their analytics and this will not be possible at this stage if you don’t have a niche website setup yet.
Another way of monetizing your niche website is by promoting CPA (cost per action) offers. Usually these offers will pay small commissions to you for your visitors providing specific details such as an email address. This is much easier than making a sale of a product.