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Successful Multi-Topic Blogs
One of the most common questions I get over and over is can I still make something of a lifestyle blog these days? Can a multi-topic blog still make it?
With every blogging expert out there telling you to niche down and pick a single topic, it can feel really disheartening for women who have multiple interests and want to blog about all of them.
So what's the truth? Is it possible to start a lifestyle blog these days that creates a full-time income?
In this post, we're going to explore three of my favorite successful multi-topic blogs and dissect them thoroughly.
We'll be looking at where they started, how they grew as well as they did, and how they've been able to incorporate multiple topics into a successful online business.
Here are our leading ladies:
- Jordan Page
- Helene in Between
- Farmhouse on Boone
How to Make Multiple Niches Work For You
1. Farmhouse on Boone
Farmhouse on Boone is one of my all-time favorite blogs and YouTube channels. Many of you may not know, but I grew up in the country on a farm and now live in the middle of one of the biggest cities in the US. Country life still holds a soft place in my heart, and I love watching Lisa's videos.
At the moment, the Farmhouse on Boone YouTube channel has over 140,000 subscribers.
Her blog and YouTube channel is a six-figure business, and she recently retired her husband from his job to help her run the business and raise their six children.
The cool part? Lisa's channel is only 2 years old. As far as six-figure blogs go, it's a baby!
She has had incredible success in a short period of time, and I can see why. Her videos are personal, high quality, and so heartwarming to watch.
While Lisa's blog is beautiful and fun to read, it's really her YouTube channel that skyrocketed her success. There is something about video that allows people so much deeper into your life and helps them cultivate a relationship with you that you simply can't get from just blogging.
If we look at the early days of the Farmhouse on Boone YouTube channel, Lisa stuck to a couple of closely related topics:
- Cooking from scratch
The Secrets of Bloggers Who Blog About Everything
While each of these topics are big enough to be a blog of their own, the key to creating a successful multi-topic blog is to make sure that the topics are closely related and appeal to the same audience.
That one is critical!
Readers are human just like you and me, and we all have a variety of interests. But that being said, it is so important that you attract ONE type of person to your blog.
What happens if you don't?
You end up with a readership and an email list full of different types of people who want different types of things from you. Then, you ultimately are able to make no one happy.
Let's say that you are super interested in business, vegetarianism, and crocheting.
These things might be important to you, but there are very few people out there who have a particular interest in all three of those. They simply don't go together. Their audiences are not the same.
So what happens when you create a blog about business, vegetarianism, and crocheting?
It becomes a cluster. If you create a product on vegetarianism, the business and crocheting readers aren’t interested.
Maybe you decide to sell some crocheting templates, and the vegetarians and business owners couldn't care less. Soon people stop reading your blog and unsubscribe from your email list because they're getting too much information about things that don't interest them.
Lisa got it right from the beginning because she knew that her audience was people just like her. Mothers who are interested in living a more country lifestyle and who like to sew, cook, and make their homes look beautiful.
These things fit together like a glove, so much so that that type of person is a stereotype.
I know the world is against stereotypes right now, but it is a very good idea to build the foundation of your blog around a stereotypical type of person. You don't want your blog to appeal to everyone! There absolutely should be people who come to your blog and say, This isn't for me and I'm not interested.
When you get this, you also get a ton of people who find your blog and realize they feel completely at home. Everything you put out is something they are interested in, they feel like you could be their friend, and your content is exactly what they want.
This is so important to keep in mind. You can't have it both ways. In order to find that group of people who are your perfect readers, you are going to have to purposefully turn away many, many others.
Every once in awhile I get snippy emails from people passing by my blog who say things like:
- Why do you assume all bloggers have kids? I'm a woman but I don't want kids.
- Why do you assume all of your readers are women? I'm a guy and I like blogging too.
It's not that I think all bloggers are women who want children (obviously). It is, however, the fact that I have created an audience that feels connected to me on this blog.
And you know what?
They are just like me. They are millennials, they are women, and they are mothers. Of course, not all of my readers have children or are women or are millennials. And that's okay!
Not everyone needs to or should fit the mold.
But, it is so important to decide who you are writing to. You can't write for everyone, so you need to pick a group. Some people won't like that and will lament that you aren't speaking directly to them. Fine.
But you need to choose a stereotype if you will, and write for just that person. If that includes multiple blog topics, that's great! But the identity rule remains the same.
So where is Farmhouse on Boone now?
Lisa still writes and films a lot about sewing and food and home decorating, but she's also included a few new categories!
For example, she now creates videos about blogging and creating YouTube channels. At first glance, these things don't fit in with topics like sewing and home decorating.
So how did she do this successfully?
She waited until her audience started asking her questions about these topics. You see, in the early days it wouldn't have made sense for Lisa to talk about these topics. She didn't have a ton of experience when she was just getting started, and very few people were likely asking her about how to start a blog or YouTube channel.
But as she became more successful and filmed a few videos about her husband quitting his job to help run her business with her, that is likely when the questions started pouring in.
In effect, she created demand for those topics in a niche that otherwise wouldn't have supported it.
And now she has created several courses on blogging and YouTube that her audience is interested in. But the key here to note is that she didn't start out blogging about all of these different topics. She chose one type of audience to create content for, and years later as she started to get lots and lots of questions about one or two other topics, she expanded from there.
This is the right way to run a successful multi-topic blog! You don't start creating content on all the topics at once. Follow what your readers want!
2. Jordan Page- How to Merge High Demand Blog Topics into a Single Blog
If you aren't following Jordan Page yet, go subscribe to her YouTube channel now! She is such a hoot, and I love watching her videos.
Jordan Page is a personal finance blogger who lives in Utah and has almost eight children! She started the blog Fun Cheap or Free when she and her husband were early in their marriage and didn't make a lot of money and were trying to figure out how to live frugally.
In the beginning, her videos and blog posts were all about frugal living and finding ways to save money. She spoke mostly to other stay at home moms, particularly those of larger families.
Now, Jordan still does plenty of videos on frugal living and money-saving hacks, but she's also added a couple of other categories.
- Raising kids
So how did she do it?
The first thing to keep in mind, like I mentioned earlier, is that these topics all go together.
It may be stereotypical to say, but most stay-at-home moms are interested in being more productive, they do a lot of cleaning, and they're trying to raise their children without spending too much money. These topics just fit.
The Rule All Successful Multi Topic Blogs Follow
The second thing to keep in mind is that Jordan didn't start out at the very beginning trying to write about everything. She started out with just personal finance topics, and productivity and cleaning content came later.
And if you look at her video page view counts, it's pretty easy to see that her videos about raising children do VERY well. I'm sure that as soon as she revealed how many children she has, she started getting a lot of questions about how she raises them all.
If there's one lesson you take from this post, I hope it's that you'll start to listen to your audience.
Answer what they want. People will tell you what they want to hear from you, especially if you give them a little nudge and ask.
And when you start to see a pattern in those questions, it's pretty safe to say that that is a topic most of your audience would be interested in. (Why do you think almost every one of my blog posts start with "one of the most common questions I get…") Haha.
3. Helene in Between - How Blogs With Multiple Topics Can Succeed
Helene is a blogger and instagrammer I've really enjoyed watching over the years. She is an American travel blogger who lived in Germany for many years and has focused her blog around her European adventures.
One thing that's interesting about Helene in Between is that her blog did not start out as a travel blog. If you look at her earliest posts, many of them are about cheap things to do in Dallas, random lifestyle posts, favorite movie recaps, and more.
So if you're sitting here with a blog that feels scattered and wondering how you're ever going to pull it all together, don't worry.
Honestly, most bloggers start out this way and I did too! It can take a little bit of time to figure out your niche and what you should be writing or filming about.
Helene found her groove in travel writing, and she spent much of her blog writing only about that. And because she speaks to other young travelers, she's acquired a huge following on her blog and on Instagram of women who have heart eyes for Europe. (Count me among them!)
More recently, Helene has also started including posts for new bloggers. With posts like how to prepare for the holidays on your blog and 65+ Thanksgiving Instagram captions for bloggers, it's safe to say that Helene has also moved into the entrepreneurial space.
Again though, as her blog became her full-time business, tons and tons of her readers started asking about those topics.
They wanted to get that information from her, because they've been following her travel advice for so long and they knew, liked, and trusted her.
This is the key.
She, like Jordan Page and Lisa from farmhouse on Boone, followed what her readers wanted and answered their questions. Of course, she still writes primarily about European travel. But she's found a way to expand her topics while still attracting the exact same type of reader she has for years.
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