How to choose a blog topic

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If you're looking to start a blog, you've got to be able to find the right mindset and answer some questions. You also need to make sure to plan out your blog's critical components.

However, choosing a topic tends to be the one thing that sets bloggers back the most. How on earth do you choose a topic or topics? Do you want to work with a specific niche topic or do you want to talk about multiple topics?

Chances are if you're reading this, you already have a topic or two in mind that you want to blog about. But you may be stuck on which direction to go.

You can write about whatever you want; it's your own personal space

I've done a lot of research on the subject matter, and I've also personally struggled with this exact problem for several years. I've had a few false starts on topics that ranged from typography to fitness, and then beauty. And I awesomely created a separate site for each one (TypeLyte, Health Peanut, Bellapepper53, etc). I've since combined them all into one blog… although maybe not entirely successfully. No one's perfect.

The great news about writing your own blog: you can write about whatever you want; it's your own personal space.

Niche Blogs vs Multi-Topic Blogs

If you want to attract and retain an audience, you're best off choosing one topic or choosing a range of topics that all tie together with one mantra or attitude.

The real question comes from what your goals are with your blog. If you want to have a space to express yourself and have a creative outlet, definitely feel free to write about whatever you wish! However, if you want to attract and retain an audience, you're best off choosing one topic or choosing a range of topics that all tie together with one overarching theme.

I've seen several good arguments in favor of a niche blog over a multi-topic blog, but that's your choice. Let's look at some benefits of both: 

Niche blog: this means you're blogging about one specific topic that appeals to one general audience type.

  • Eliminates reader confusion
  • Allows you to build a loyal fan base with a strong interest in your blog's topic
  • You can get ranked higher with SEO (Search Engine Optimization) because of the consistent and quality content you create under one topic
  • Con: Can feel limiting both in what you write and what audience you attract
  • Con: It can feel impersonal to yourself and maybe even your readers

Multi-topic blog: this type of blog is a curated mixture of your personal interests.

  • This type is not limiting at all
  • It allows you to reach a larger audience that is interested in one or more of the topics you talk about
  • Con: Your audience may feel disconnected because of the inconsistency with topics and may be less likely to subscribe…
  • However, if you can tie your topics together with a unique perspective, mantra or attitude, people will come back to read your take on whatever topic you choose to blog about that day.

Blog Topic Examples

There are varying levels of each type of blog, mostly having to do with the factor of levels of uniqueness. Let's use a beauty blog example.

Beauty blogs are a niche blog in general, and can encompass a wide range of topics, from skincare, to makeup, to hairstyles, etc. An example of a pinpointed niche beauty blog could be "budget-friendly organic skincare product reviews".

A lifestyle blog could encompass anything from decor to tech to health. You can create a more specific lifestyle blog by talking about all of those topics, but focusing on supporting eco-friendly small businesses.

You can see that a beauty or lifestyle blog can go a number of different ways, and can be broad or extremely narrow. The important factor is to make sure to share your perspective on the matter.

To get really specific, celebrity facial hair is a niche type of blog, but you could narrow it even further to be about celebrity eyebrows.

No Matter What, Make Sure

OK, I'm getting silly. But you get the idea, and you can see why choosing what to blog about can be daunting. The important thing is whatever you blog about, choose something where you're knowledgeable and have a lot of passion. Your personal interest and investment in your blog topics will help you fuel your writing and community engagement. Then, stick with it the best you can!

I recently listened to a Pat Flynn podcast about blogging and he made a very good point: If you really want your blog to go somewhere, of course you want to make sure you're passionate about the topic. But Pat really hit the nail on the head when he said to ask yourself if you can see yourself blogging about this topic in 5 years. Or even 10 years!

if your blog helps people, you'll build a community for feedback and in turn will be motivated to continue blogging

Make sure your blog topic(s) is something that you already love to talk about in general. And as a bonus, if your blog helps people, you'll build a community for feedback and in turn will be motivated to continue blogging.

Next Steps for You

Write down the topics you wish to cover. While this isn't set in stone, the more concrete your topic ideas are, the easier it will be for you to work through the steps of launching your blog.

Make sure your blog topics hit these important points:

  • It's something you're passionate about
  • It's something you can see yourself blogging about for the next 5 or 10 years
  • Bonus if your blog topic(s) will help people
  • It's something you're already knowledgeable about, or are seriously dedicated to learning more about
  • It's something you talk about nonstop anyway
  • The blog topics are related or can be tied together with one mantra or M.O.

Moving forward, you can start to brainstorm specific posts or post series for your chosen topic or topics. But with a solid plan in place, you'll be setting yourself up for blogging success!

Have you struggled with niche blogging vs multi-topic blogging? What topics do you blog about, or do you want to blog about?

Cover photo by J. Kelly Brito