Everybody who creates content online has a brand. In the age of social media, our brands are the gatekeepers to the kind of people who will consume our content. This would lead us to believe that generic content is the way to go to attract as wide of an audience as possible. However, with so many people making content online, niche content is what ultimately helps you stand out.

Niche marketing is an altogether different ball game. The key to building an audience around niche content is to, first and foremost, treat your community like a family. You know your audience is limited to a certain section of people so you should work on solidifying your relationship with them as much as possible. This way, your community also becomes your mouth piece.

Omnicore reported that as of January 25th 2020, Instagram has over 500 million daily active users. Lockdown has likely increased these numbers. Individuals who may be dabbling in and around your niche are likely to trust the word of other consumers as opposed to you, the creator. Hence, a well-informed and loyal audience can go a long way in helping you establish a community around niche content

You’ve Got A Friend In Me
Competition in niche markets is usually at an all-time high. Due to a small number of players, it is easy to keep track of competitors. This would lead us to believe that expanding business in a niche market requires constantly being ahead of the curve and better than your competitors. While healthy competition allows any industry to constantly improve themselves, collaboration among niche creators is likely to yield better gains. By working with other creators in the same niche, there is potential to merge audiences as the topic of interest is more or less the same. Moreover, it provides the audience more variety regarding their subject of passion and hence allows communities to grow.

Sneha Ullal Goel conducts an interview series on her Instagram called #TheFaceBehindTheBrand where she interviews indie labels. She herself works with small independent businesses and brands and through her interview series, she amplifies the people behind these brands by putting them in the forefront. She believes, “At the end of the day, in order to survive, you have to learn to build each other up.”

Create To Educate
Many a time there may already exist a market for your niche, however, it may be less formalised. People may already be aware of the niche category your content falls in without even knowing it themselves. As a niche content creator, educating your consumers regarding your niche is a great way of expanding your business. By breaking down your content into simple terms, you are essentially showing people why they should consume your content.

Seeing a potential market in the buyers of ayurvedic and herbal products, Naina Ruhail set up Vanity Wagon, an online portal of sustainable beauty products. She uses Vanity Wagon’s Instagram account to not just spread knowledge about natural beauty products, but also to feature sustainable brands. She says, “The Indian consumers have always used age-old formulations for their beauty and personal care needs, be it in the form of medicated herbal products or also homegrown remedies. The market has always existed. And the work that needed to be done was a genuine effort towards bringing the best of clean beauty brands in front of these consumers. Vanity Wagon achieves that, and hence we have been successful.”

Be True Be You!
Brands that are starting out often present themselves in an extremely professional manner to be taken seriously in their industry. However, the same rules need not necessarily apply when creating niche content. Like we have said, niche communities thrive due to their loyalty to the brand. Your audience is coming to you as someone who shares a similar interest to them, not as someone who can give them professional help. Hence, do not be afraid to use an informal voice and personalize your content to your audience. 

Nishita Toprani started Little Pixie as an e-commerce brand selling fashionable yet affordable clothes for young girls. They operate exclusively on Instagram and take orders through their DMs. The owner has revealed that every time she gets a message from a potential customer she starts by introducing herself and asking how she can help. She does so because she believes, “This automatically creates a sense of assurance in the customer’s mind that there is an actual person behind the whole process. It’s not just about clicking on buttons to place your order, and your questions will be answered if you have any. It is important for any customer to feel reassured and understood, but even more so for someone who is buying something for their child.”

Do Not Forget Your Nucleus!
As a creator of niche content, it may seem attractive to expand your brand once you have gained a significant following. There is nothing wrong with this if done correctly. Branching out is a great way of growing a community, however, it must not be done at the cost of your initial idea. Do not lose focus from the topic that attracted your followers in the first place. 

Simran Oberoi Multani started Ovenderful as an online blog for moms interested in healthy baking. Today it has expanded into an online community of 30,000+ members with a focus on healthy baking for community causes. However, all of their initiatives are centred around healthy baking. Simran believes that since it is their passion for cooking healthy food for their loved ones that brought them together in the first place, this is how they are going to make an impact. She says, “I ensure that the group stays on the topic by going through each and every post as well as the comments in them very closely. It is important to be able to spend time and do that if one wants to retain its essence and not dilute its purpose. Also, the knowledge sharing that takes place is not generic in nature – it is entirely centred around healthy baking fundamentals.”

The key to creating a community around niche content is to truly understand the community. You might be able to bring them to you on account of having a similar area of interest, however, to get them to stay, you have to understand their requirements. Building a brand around niche content requires finding the perfect balance between what your audience wants and what you want to give them. In the middle of this lies the space where the creator and audience can nurture a community of passionate individuals.