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How to Choose a Topic and Niche in 2024 on YouTube

02 Feb, 2024
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Selecting your channel's topic and defining your niche are important steps, and to do so, you need to understand exactly what a "niche" and a "channel topic" are.

In this article, we will discuss both the basic rules of topic selection and how to choose the most profitable niche for yourself.

What does a niche mean for YouTube, and what does it mean for content creators?

In reality, there aren't any specific, clearly defined niches on YouTube. If you look at the left menu on YouTube, you'll encounter a short list of the most popular topics highlighted for viewers: Shopping, Music, Movies&TV, Gaming, and Sport etc. 

If you look at the niches offered to us when uploading a video, the list has become much more extensive.

If you google this question, you'll find completely different topics suggested via search.

So, what are niches on YouTube?

First and foremost, we should focus on what this means for YouTube itself, in order to promote our content more effectively on their terms. 

Niches are segments of people who can be united by specific interests.

YouTube, in general, doesn't care much about what content creators do. Primarily, it focuses on viewers and their interests. It's these viewer interests that help YouTube determine the themes around which it organizes creators' content. There are no strict boundaries here; you can consider all the aforementioned sources.

For creators, it's important to understand which group of people with what interests they want to target with their content and, based on that understanding, create content within their niche.

Once the content on a channel starts to deviate from these boundaries, everything falls apart: the understanding of YouTube, whom to show your content to, the understanding of viewers, what and why they watch on your channel.

If you, as a creator, can clearly understand that your channel and content can be attributed to some broader common topic, such as cars or cooking, then working with the channel becomes much easier because you're creating content for an existing group of people.

When you analyze your niche, formats, and audience, you already have a "starter pack" for making quality popular content on YouTube.

Why is it important to choose a specific niche?

It's very simple: if you don't occupy your niche on YouTube, you'll waste a lot of time creating content that can’t be categorized efficiently on YouTube.

Without appropriate positioning of your content on YouTube, the algorithm will not be able to identify your target viewers, nor will your potential viewers understand why they should watch your content.

There are other important factors that you should be aware of when considering the niche of your content:

  • There's too much content on YouTube

Every day, thousands of channels are created, so if you're making your own channel, it's important to stand out amid this information overload and gather like-minded individuals around you, rather than random viewers.

  • Platform algorithms

YouTube's algorithms seek out videos based on viewers' interests, compiling libraries of videos by category. From these categories, YouTube then selects the most effective videos — not to be confused with the most popular ones — and shows them to viewers with similar interests.

If YouTube doesn't understand what interests and needs your content addresses, there's a high chance it won't find your audience.

If your topic is clear and understandable, your audience will find your videos more quickly, and YouTube will start increasing your reach faster, promoting your content.

  • A clearly defined topic helps you make effective videos

If you have a clear format, structured content, and defined goals, you won't scatter your focus on everything happening in your life. You also won't wonder what to film next, but rather what stories and insights you should share with your audience. You won't question how to present your content to viewers or whether it suits your audience at all. You will already understand how your content will best serve its desired audience.

However, as soon as the theme and niche start to blur, such as inserting vlogs about home construction on a cooking channel, you lose focus and start creating random content. This loss of focus can demotivate your audience. A demotivated audience will not watch content that deviates from what they initially subscribed to your channel for.

  • All you need is 1000 real fans

If you think that by creating videos for everyone in the world, you'll have a larger audience, more views, and more earnings, then think again. That is not the way to be successful on YouTube.

The targeted group of viewers who will become your fans will bring in your main source of income. Those die-hard fans will buy your products and services, and they will support you with donations.

Therefore, to become successful and earn more on the platform, you need passionate viewers rather than trying to please everyone in the world.

  • Downsizing is the secret to upscaling

If you start with a specific topic, perhaps not the largest in terms of coverage, it will be easier for you to promote your channel to a larger niche or a more profitable one.

For example, a creator may start with a vlog teaching photography, and over time, they may open a photography school and discuss topics like hiring people and developing their own business.

You can become known for one specialty and later expand your presence, and people will listen to you because you're an authoritative figure.

Narrow and broad niche on YouTube

Now let's talk about the advantages and disadvantages of various tactics related to narrow and broad channel niches.

  • Advantages of a narrow topic or niche

Narrowing down or refining your niche means occupying a specific niche on YouTube and approaching content creation more precisely, specifying the niche into a topic. For example, we have the broad topic of cooking, where newcomers find it difficult to compete with larger channels. However, you can narrow down the niche by focusing your content on more than regular recipes. For example, you can focus on gluten-free or vegetarian dishes.

If you narrow down the niche, it's much easier to achieve success, dominate your space, and maintain a top position. You can showcase your unique value with much less competition. This will allow you to become a top expert or simply a creator whom people are willing to listen to on almost any topic because you've earned your authority.

And from there, it's much easier to grow, which is the second advantage of a narrow niche. In general, if you find a less popular topic within a popular niche, you have hit the jackpot. 

In simple terms, if you create a channel in the automotive niche but focus solely on engine repair because it's an in demand topic, you'll quickly win over an audience that loves cars and already trusts your opinion. Over time, you'll start talking about other, broader topics, and your audience will boost your videos because they've already chosen your channel.

  • Advantages of a broad topic or niche

A broad niche implies that in your videos, you'll talk about more general things. The topics you'll cover on your channel may be of interest to a large audience. For example, there's the automotive niche and the narrow topic of engines. But if we were to expand the niche, we'd talk about car brands and models in general terms. Then you would create videos that provide simple reviews of new models with test drives and automotive details.

There are many advantages to this approach. You'll initially have a much larger reach, meaning more chances to be seen. You won't be stuck with just a couple of thousand people on your channel when the reach of the niche is in the tens of millions of viewers with similar interests.

Now let's talk about the drawbacks of both strategies. Interestingly, there's only one drawback, and it applies to both narrow and broad niches: there's a huge chance that you'll take a long time to grow. Conversely, there's also a chance that you'll develop rapidly in both cases. 

One thing is obvious: a creator who doesn't position themselves won't succeed on YouTube. 

So, how do you choose your niche if you're not sure what you want your channel to be about? There are three simple criteria that can help you with this:

  • Your passion: that is, what you are passionate about, what you like.

It's important to be passionate about what you do because you'll encounter challenges on YouTube, and only passion will help you find the strength to overcome them.

  • Your skills: it's essential to have some skills that you'll apply in your content.

You might be interested in psychology, but at an amateur level — you read books, follow public pages, watch some analyses on YouTube, attend lectures. However, without a specialized education, without completed courses, without real patient cases, you won't be able to run a full-fledged channel and help other people.

  • How much profit do you plan to make from your channel?

If you don't bring income into your activity, then it's just a hobby. With this approach, you won't feel the responsibility, you won't have motivation to create consistent content, or to improve its quality. And with today’s competitive platform, this approach won't lead anywhere. Plus, you'll probably get bored quickly.

You need to think in advance about what profit or benefit you'll derive from your creativity. It may not always be about money, but more often than not, it is.

If all three aspects aren't currently formulated perfectly, you can develop expertise over time. Money will come, but without passion, you'll give up as soon as difficulties arise.

How to choose a niche in 2024

Most people want a list of niches and topics that are currently the most profitable. However, if you carefully read the text above, you'll understand that literally any niche can be profitable.

What's more important is that you don't get tired of your chosen niche and enjoy what you create. However, if you want to organize a more commercial project, it's important to know how to identify profitable niches.

  • How to determine niche profitability

First, it's important to understand that the target audience of a niche should be financially capable adults because this affects both monetization and their ability to buy something directly from you (products or services) or to buy something that advertisers will sell in your videos.

Second, if you want to understand if a niche is popular, look at whether there is a growing demand for this topic in general, then there will also be a growing demand for content on this topic.

For example, the topic of finances: people's interest in personal financial literacy and investments is growing. This is an adult topic, people are interested in it right now, which means money is involved, and this means there is a need for understandable and quality content on the topic.

Therefore, in 2024 you should pay attention to the following niches:

  • Personal finance and investing
  • Real estate
  • Health
  • Technology and gadgets
  • Life hacking (AI, robots, smart home, how to do something quickly and easily)
  • Travel
  • Expert content and creativity

But let's emphasize once again that in order to earn on YouTube, you don't necessarily have to be in any of these niches; you can earn in your own niche as well.

What factors will help you succeed?

Choosing a niche is necessary for you, for YouTube, and for your viewers. However, you can create a profitable independent channel regardless of the topic.

 If you can check off a couple of the points below, then you're on the right path:

  • The niche should align with your long-term goals: deriving pleasure from your activity, increasing average revenue, transitioning fully to work on YouTube, etc.
  • The niche should match your existing skills and experiences:do what you know, rather than attempting to conquer space without having the skills of an astronaut.
  • The niche should reflect your lifestyle: don't engage in activities that you dislike, contradict your values, or go against your worldview.
  • You contribute to making the niche better: do not mindlessly imitate others, but implement your unique position and perspective on the topic.
  • You experience happiness from what you do in your niche.

If all five factors resonate with you, then you have the highest likelihood of success.

Keep in mind that you don't need to chase popular and profitable niches; it's important not to go against your own interests. If you don't plan to turn your channel into a business and want to continue running it as a hobby, then no one will force you to stick to one topic or niche. But if you want to grow, develop, and earn on YouTube, then make sure to figure out your niche and topic. Good luck!

 

Author
Author

Sasha Lerman

Copywriter, writer, editor. Development and promotion on YouTube, as well as many other exciting topics.

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