6 Practical Steps To Earn The Pro Status In Your Niche

This is a guest post by Jane Sheeba.

Only the pros always do it.

Be it six figure pay checks, screen shots of skyrocketing traffic proof, stunning product launches, amazing social proof, and wherever they go, they’re looked upon – the pros do it.

Why isn’t it easy to become a pro in your niche? Is it a “guru” thing? Do you have to drink some special soup?

Well, as it might sound such a thing of height, it actually isn’t that hard to become a pro. But ironically, the “pro” status should be earned and not acquired.

You should work to meet your business goals in an elegant way such that from seeing the value of the stuff you offer and the professionalism involved with your presence, people should automatically give you the pro card.

Ah well, it all sounds like geek advice, doesn’t it? And who likes advice? No one does!

Let’s get practical. Let me tell you the practical steps involved in earning the pro status.

Let’s dive in.

Find the Right Niche

When someone talks about online success, problogging and niche, most bloggers read that as “blogging niche”, as if there is no other niche available in the store.

I know why the “blogging tips” niche is so popular and attractive for aspiring bloggers to dive in. Before starting a blog (with the “make money online” mindset) any blogger reads a handful of blogs that are about blogging tips.

They get so involved in the subject, get to know a lot of theory and they start to think that they know substantial amount of information in the niche. That’s right, they know things. But they have no experience in the niche.

Right, I hear you now!

Should one have 5-10 years experience in blogging on a particular niche to become a pro in that niche? Certainly not! But you can’t fake it like a pro.

I’m not telling you that the blogging tips or internet marketing niche is bad. But if you’re just reading about blogging, then don’t start a blogging tips blog. It will turn your readers off.

For instance, if you write about how to get 100K Twitter followers while your own Twitter account has 200 followers, that’s gonna put the readers off!

So find a niche where there’s not much suffocation. Stand out with your writing and strategies you share. Be THE one (and not ‘one among’) on the topic you write.

Know Your Niche

Even before you start brainstorming for ideas to publish in your blog, make sure you know your niche. By “knowing your niche” I mean not just being aware of the day to day updates, but you should also know the following:

1. Who is your target market?

2. What do they desperately need?

3. What are the other places where your target audience can get what they want?

4. How do YOU and YOUR CONTENT differ from those other places?

5. Does your content help you to stand out in your niche?

6. Are you one among the bloggers in your niche or THE one?

Well, with the last question I don’t mean that you should choose a niche on which no else is blogging, but you should really stand out.

Without knowing answers to any of these questions, do not start yet.

Be Everywhere

This cool advice is from Pat Flynn of Smart Passive Income, and this does work. When you present yourself and your valuable stuff all over the place, people won’t have an option but to notice you.

But this doesn’t have to be overwhelming and distracting. With the number of social media platforms already available and with the ones that pop up fresh quite often, its hard to be everywhere. That’s totally fine.

But “Everywhere” can be redefined according to your needs. You don’t need to be present on every social media known, on every forum or on every membership site. Just pick the biggies and stick with the ones that give you a good return of value.

For this you need to study a bit. Initially experiment on a few social media platforms like Twitter, Facebook, and Google+ and see which audience convert well.

You need to stick only with those that give you a great ROI.

More than social media platforms, you can easily win people’s attention (and their hearts) through guest blogging.

Funnel Your Returns

When you offer quality, when you are everywhere, there’s no doubt you’ll get noticed. You’ll get lots of people to visit your own blog/website. This is a sign that people are interested in you.

What do you do about them? Do you just let them to visit your blog’s homepage and read one or two posts, and then leave?

Do you clearly know what you actually want to get out of the traffic you are able to generate? Well, the pros clearly know that.

They always have this thing called the funnel. For every campaign they run (be it guest blogging, product launches, giveaways, etc.), they know EXACTLY what they want to reap out of the return.

You need to create a funnel based on what you actually want from your returns (the people that are interested in you/your work). Do you want them to join your list? Do you want them to buy your product? Do you want them to press the social buttons?

Create funnels based on these preferences. For instance, if you want them to join your list, divert those people to a dedicated page that explains why they need to subscribe and put up an easy subscription form on that page.

The last thing you want to do is to direct them to a page where there is no subscription form; you cannot expect them to subscribe, of course.

Offer Nothing but Value

You cannot even dream about becoming a pro if you don’t offer valuable stuff. It doesn’t matter how often you publish blog posts, or how often you launch products.

If your blog posts or products are crappy, no matter how many of them you deliver, they are going to end up in some black hole, never to be found again.

You want your blog posts to be shared by people, to be bookmarked, to be savored and above all, after reading your blog post, your readers should be able to do some action and get a benefit out of it.

If the content you deliver doesn’t have that “meaty” part, niche domination will only be a dream. After all, you cannot dupe it.

Pros are known for their quality and if you want to become one, your standards should be appropriate as well.

Be Generous

The pros are generous. They usually don’t care too much about giving away stuff for free. I mean valuable stuff.

Pros don’t calculate the pennies. They don’t hide stuff behind the walls.

Well, don’t get me wrong. I’m not saying that you should become a charity inc., build valuable stuff out of hard work and give them all away for free. You won’t be able to run a business like that.

But don’t hold back.

Remember, a sale occurs one time. But a relationship or a good name earned lasts longer and can lead to multiple business transactions. It also helps with easy “word of mouth” promotions and recommendations.

Takeaway

The pro status cannot be acquired; but that doesn’t mean that you should stop trying to become one.

In fact you should put every effort to become one in whatever you do(I know that’s controversial. I said earlier that pro status should not be acquired, but hey, lets face the fact – we all want to become a pro, right?).

It is because the pro status integrates all the excellent qualities outlined above. And, if you have those, you’d be an additional gem on the crown. That’s so precious.





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Comments

  1. says

    I’m everywhere!
    Old Saying: “You can lead a horse to water, but you can’t make him drink.”
    New Saying: “You can lead a netizen to your blog or website, but you can’t make him or her interact.”
    People will do what they want to do. And because people are sheeple, if blogging guru “Joe” and guru-ess “Jane” tell them to go to blogger X’s blog because they can make money, they’ll do it! Blogger X WILL make money (as an affiliate of Joe and Jane) and the netizen will have NOTHING OF VALUE (except for the fact that he or she THINKS it is something of value!)… People running the BEST NICHE BLOGS, I’ve found, blog with passion, and they are not worried about everything you outlined above. Because they are great, money, if they’re looking for it, comes naturally. The fakers can only fake for so long!

    Blog On!
    Dave Lucas just posted Pop Clips » 12 June 12

  2. says

    Hi Jane

    Fantastic post! I must say that where most people go wrong is in “choosing the niche” even though a lot of advise tells you to blog about something your passionate about or have a deepth of knowledge a vast majority still take the “make money online” route because they have heard of the success stories.

    Like you said about the guy teaching people how to get 100,000 followers and yet he only has 200.

    I see a lot of this online especially on forums, the thing is if people took the time to add value they would achieve success so much quicker than trying to take short cuts.

  3. says

    I enjoyed Pat’s blogword take on “Be everywhere”. While it’s easy to say it verbally, it takes a lot of effort to make your presence felt.

    We can’t force ourselves on others and command “pro” status. I’ve come to realize that when you solve the most pressing problems that many people struggle with, in a given niche, there is a small +1 added to the pro status ;-) If you accumulate enough of those, Pro.. we become !
    Shamelle just posted Great Blogging Tips I Learned From Smart Passive Income By Pat Flynn

  4. says

    Hi Jane,

    This is an excellent article for me because I try t read everything I find on becoming a pro in my niche. I am a small blog, and try to write with passion and things I’ve learned. I really appreciate your writing whenever I read your things.

    I am always up for suggestions to become a better blogger and writer, and am working on an e-book to sell on my site and use as a giveaway with contests. Thanks for the article. Sally
    Sally Brown just posted Alert: Create Your Reality

  5. says

    Hi Jane,

    I appreciate your remarks on generosity. My favorite bloggers are passionately generous and that is what sets them apart for me. It takes time to educate yourself and build your authority. Sometimes you have to start two or three blogs before you find your niche. I think a lot of people simply give up when their blog doesn’t instantly generate a livable income. Yet as you mentioned, it really is about building relationships. People don’t buy from strangers – they want to know your story.
    Heather just posted SEO content marketing roundup, week ending June 13th

  6. says

    Great post, love it! Way too many people pick up information and then immediately decide they know everything necessary to start doing “it” as a business, whether it’s social media marketing/management, web design/graphic design, even health & wellness… I see it all the time and wonder how these people convince customers to sign on with them.
    A pro has existing customers, a track record of success and recognition from peers. It’s up to us as consumers to do a bit of due diligence when faced with a “pro” or “guru” who’s trying to dip their paws into our wallets or are offering us their advice or pro-pinions ;)
    Michael just posted Creating Graphics for Facebook Timeline Events

  7. says

    I think the general key is to provide valuable, quality content whenever possible. If you aren’t able to write quality, then don’t – less quantity of higher quality will always result in a better outcome.

    One of the reasons why the “Pro Bloggers” that exist in our niches even exist is because they are dedicated to their niche and have constantly worked on it, day in and day out. Turning your back on it doesn’t help you, so the overall key is to be on-task and of quality whenever you are expanding your blog or website.
    Joe Boyle just posted Enhance Your Alexa Rank By 250%

  8. says

    This post is a really great take on what it requires to make it as a blogger. I think the biggest step is writing quality articles, that people actually want to read. This requires a lot of work because you have to a) find something captivating to write about and b) write it in an interesting, thought-provoking way. It takes a lot of practice and a lot of articles before you start to get any kind of response, but once you do… it certainly feels good! Nice article. :)

  9. says

    I don’t think you need to be an expert to start a blog in a particular niche. I doubt there are any bloggers in any niche that didn’t learn more about the niche as their blog developed. I believe liking the topic and having some experience (not expert level) with the topic is more important.

    I’ve jumped into niches based on interest and life experience. That life experience may be a few years old, but it didn’t take long to dig in and generate some cool content as I researched and actually did stuff in the niche (whether use products, software … taking action of some sort).

    Being everywhere is good especially if you wish to reduce your dependence on the search engines which is never a bad strategy. Sometimes it’s hard to expand channels but once done, it’s not so difficult. I tend to focus on a few channels rather than trying to be everywhere. That’s probably to my detriment.
    Jon D. just posted 8 WordPress Themes for Lawyers and Law Firm Websites

  10. says

    Finding your niche, or finding what you really love to do is really the key to success. It’s really all about passion. Not only in social media, but in whatever you want to do in life. Your real self will shine through in your written words, and readers will definitely “feel” if you’re just faking it or not. Great post!

  11. says

    Hi Jane,

    Generosity is something that works pretty well in my niche. Still you made me wonder if I really did enough and I probably can improve. So I got two new brilliant ideas (one you will be able to download in a few days :-). The other one is my book. I probably need to give away more copies and I got some ideas on that too!

    Thanks,
    Nik