You know you want to have a blog. You know you should have a blog, because content is your number one form of marketing, regardless of product. But what kind of blog should you have? That is the question that many people tend to have starting out, as brand specific content only gets you so far.

A great example is the Mint blog, MintLife. If they had only operated based on their service, their blog posts wouldn't have been especially interesting or helpful. Instead, they put together a wider financial blog that helps advise their millions of visitors on everything from tax season, to budgeting. And they do it in a friendly, casual tone that is easy for anyone to follow.

Why You Should Be Marketing to a Niche

MintLife, like many other brands, are marketing to a niche. This is choosing one specific (but fairly broad) category, and spread out within it to give them both a narrow enough topic to build their authority, but a wide enough one that they aren't pushed into a corner.

You want to work in the same way, and find a category in which to market yourself. But that niche can't just be any; finding a profitable one is crucial. A profitable niche is one that not only gives you a platform for building genuine profit, but also works to grow your content in a large scale. Profitability goes beyond the numbers.

Where Keywords Fit Into The Equation

Keyword research is your number one way of finding a profitable niche. Big companies tend to do data mining and a more extensive form of market research, but it is expensive and more valuable for large brands. You want easily manageable, easy to interpret information, and keywords give you just that.

There are two major tools you want at your disposal when looking for keywords. The first is Serpstat. It gives you insight into what your audience is searching for, what the competition is doing, and what SEO tactics you can employ when deciding on your niche (including related keywords to target). Using "Competition" filter you can find keywords that have low competition and a pretty high search demand:


Here's a detailed guide into how to find valuable keywords.

Another useful tool to have around is Buzzsumo. It is more heavily content based, so might be more useful once you have started creating, but it can help point you in the right direction.


Knowing When a Niche Is Profitable

Keywords can only tell you so much. So how do you know when something really is profitable. Take your keyword list and start asking these questions:

  • Is this niche evergreen, or does it have a time limit? You want a niche that is going to be long lasting, and relevant for years to come. Otherwise, there is no point in investing your time and energy into it.

  • Does the keyword density in search show a real demand? You don't want something too saturated, but you want to make sure there is enough demand that you have an active and recurring audience.

  • Are there related topics I can fit within this niche? Not everything you create is going to be based entirely around the core of the niche. You want related topics to branch out. Here’s a good example of how you can steer any niche to your other interests.

  • Can you look yourself in the mirror if marketing this niche? Believe it or not, ethics are important here. If you aren't comfortable marketing this niche, avoid it.

  • Will you be able to marketing this niche, and stay away? Interest and passion are just as important as knowledge and expertise. You don't want to corner a topic you hate, and wind up resenting your own work.

Balancing Effort Versus Payout

One quick word of advice to end on here: don't try to compete with big names that have already cornered a market. Yeah, yeah, this is an unpopular opinion with many who say that if they had followed that advice they never would have dominated a niche. But for every one person who sees success doing that, a hundred fail. A better approach is to corner a less populated keyword, build it up, gain authority and popularity, then leverage that into taking on niche keywords already taken by bigger brands.

So if your niche is too hard to break into, don't worry. You can find a related one that is more profitable for you, and leave expanding into the more high demand niche and keywords for later. You will still get there, but the difference is the profitable foundation you would have generated first. You can only go up from there.

Have some tips for using keyword research to find and dominate the most profitable niches? Let us know in the comments!

Ann Smarty is the Brand and Community manager at as well as the founder of Ann has been into Internet Marketing for 7 years, she is the former Editor-in-Chief of Search Engine Journal and contributor to prominent search and social blogs including Small Biz Trends and Mashable. Connect with Ann on Twitter: seosmarty