Last week, I explained how to evaluate a copywriting niche. This week, I want to talk to you about how to change your copywriting niche.
There are many reasons why you may want to change your niche. Perhaps you’ve found your current niche isn’t as profitable as you’d hoped. Or, maybe you just want to explore a new market.
Switching to a new copywriting niche isn’t difficult, especially if you’ve already been successful in your current niche. Let’s look at the process step-by-step.
The first step is to update your website to focus on your new target market.
Let’s say you’ve been writing white papers and case studies for software firms and now you want to write articles and e-newsletters for speakers, trainers, and consultants. Both markets are good ones, but they are very different.
You would update your website so when speakers, trainers, and consulting firms go to your website, they immediately see you are a copywriter for their businesses.
Now, it’s a big decision to completely change your website. So, if you are not making a complete change of focus but perhaps just exploring a new market, you can add a new page on your website just for that target market. Then, you can put a link on your homepage to the new page for your new niche.
That lets you dip your toe in the water by adding that specialty on your homepage. Once your business in that niche grows, you’ll want to have an entire website dedicated just to that target market.
Announce Your New Niche
The second thing to do is tell everybody about your new niche market. You should update all of your social media accounts: LinkedIn, Twitter, and Facebook. Make sure your profile tells everybody about your new focus on writing for speakers, trainers, and consultants.
Also, send an email to everybody in your professional network such as designers you’ve worked with, past clients, colleagues, and any other business connections you have.
Your email would simply say, “I have a new focus with my business. I’m now working with speakers, trainers, and consultants and can help them with these types of copywriting projects.”
You’re spreading the word to people you know, who already like and respect you. They are the best candidates to give you potential referrals when you’re changing the focus in your copywriting business.
Create a Buzz Piece
Next, create a buzz piece. It could be a short white paper or special report, or something else that positions you as an expert in your new copywriting niche.
Let me give you an example. I knew a copywriter many years ago, and she wanted to focus on doing work with companies in the solar technology industry, which is a unique, narrowly focused niche industry. So, she created a six-page white paper about copywriting that sells solar technology products.
That buzz piece helped her in two ways. First, it established her credibility instantly in that market. The fact that she published a white paper signaled to people in that market that she’s an expert at what she does.
Second, the white paper became a great lead generation piece for her. She was able to send letters offering her free report. She posted it on her website and used it to generate leads and inquiries into her services. It worked — she became very successful in that copywriting niche.
Creating a buzz piece is a critical step. In fact, I wouldn’t recommend entering into any new market without a buzz piece to use in your marketing because it works so well.
Become Visible in Your Niche
Next, explore quick ways to get in front of your target audience.
So, using our example of targeting speakers, trainers, and consultants, you might look for organizations of speakers and trainers. There are a number of them out there, such as the National Speakers Association.
When you find an organization, see if there’s a way to get in front of them as quickly as possible. Perhaps you can contribute an article to their newsletter. You could offer to do a webinar or be interviewed on a podcast in the niche.
Another way to get in front of your market is by guest blogging. Find a blog that speakers and trainers are reading, and see if you can contribute an article or a guest post.
Half the battle in marketing your services to a brand-new target audience is letting them know who you are and what you do.
Build a Prospect List
Just as you probably did with your first copywriting niche, do some research and develop a list of good potential clients.
You’ll want to have a profile of your ideal client and build a very selective prospect list. It may not even be a long list. You may only have a hundred names on it, but they’re all potential ideal clients.
Then, you can look at each company and strategize how best to contact them. Because all you have to do is land two or three of these ideal clients, and you will have the foundation to grow your business in your new copywriting niche.
Build Your Referral Network
And finally, start building your referral network. This is more of a long-term strategy, but no less important than the others.
For example, if you are targeting speakers and trainers, you might want to find out which graphic design firms target that market and then introduce yourself to those companies. Get to know them because they could potentially refer you to their clients and vice versa.
Yes, it can take time to build a referral network. But trust me, it’s worth it. Building out your referral network is the best investment you can make in your business.
So, those are the steps I recommend you take when changing your copywriting niche. Update your website and let your professional network know about your new focus. Create a buzz piece and explore quick ways to get in front of your target audience, so a lot of them know very quickly what you can do for them. Start building a selective prospect list of ideal clients you’d love to land. And develop your referral network, building relationships with the professionals and companies that could potentially refer you to clients.
Remember, you’re never stuck in a copywriting niche. While it takes some work, you can expand your services into additional niches, or choose a completely new one at any time. It’s your freelance business to serve the clients you choose to serve.