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INTRO 23y/o, Chronically Ill, Want to Shoot Higher

Bekit

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Doing market research and thinking.

The most glaring lack I see in this niche is that there's no hub* for all the info about style theories. I think I could create that hub. I could interview stylists and authors and create a one-stop shop for all things color analysis, personal styling, etc. Then once I gain visibility and credibility, I can create a course or ebook that ties all the theories together and teaches women how to apply them.

I could use interviews not only to promote my brand, but also as research for creating my product.

I don't think I can become the #1 stylist in the industry. I don't want to make that my goal. So I'm asking myself, "What can I be the #1 at?" I think I can be the #1 source of information and clarification about these style theories.

Does that sound like a viable plan?

*There are some small hubs, but they're very disorganized.

Edit: These are what I would consider the informational hubs of this niche:

Pinterest is also a major information-gathering place. But again, not very organized.
I like it. Thumbs up!!

The beauty of being a hub is that you don't have to be the expert at style... You can just be the person who pulls together a lot of (sometimes) conflicting information and synthesizes it for people. That is a huge role! I love it!
 

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Hopeful

Hopeful

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I like it. Thumbs up!!

The beauty of being a hub is that you don't have to be the expert at style... You can just be the person who pulls together a lot of (sometimes) conflicting information and synthesizes it for people. That is a huge role! I love it!
Thanks! Yep, exactly. :smile:

The only thing that bugs me is something that @Johnny boy brought up earlier... if I'm just aggregating information, then what can I actually charge for? Sure, I'm not just aggregating; I'm also analyzing/simplifying... but I don't know how to make that into a product people would be willing to pay for. (Am I going around in circles? It feels like I am, sorry.)
 
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Ax3

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Jul 9, 2018
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Hey Hopeful! (Great name btw)

I'm also quite new around here and have mostly been lurking since i joined but felt that I might be of assistance with your questions. This is actually my first ever post on the forum.

I work with SEO inhouse at a company as my main profession, I also run a couple of my own websites.

There are lots of great tips in this thread that I think you should heed regarding monetization and the like. I have a small section about monetization at the bottom of this post but most of it has already been said in different forms.

Your first step no matter what is probably going to be building an audience. People you can connect with, give value to and eventually finding a way to trade that value for money. Having an audience also gives you the freedom to create a product that your audience needs instead of starting with a product and then finding out if people want it. Once you launch it you already(hopefully) have the trust of your customers which helps greatly in selling people on something.

Building your audience

I might be a bit biased since I work with SEO but I took a quick look over the industry you're targeting and there is definitely potential there.

A few observations:
  • The competition isn't very harsh ranking-wise, so you definitely have a good chance of ranking high
    • What I mean by this is that while there are a few sites that target this industry, they aren't very strong seo wise. Not in the optimization of the content or in the link/authority department. There are also loads of unserved keywords where sites like Pinterest rank well because content from others is lacking.
  • The keywords & topics all have quite a decent amount of search volume each month.
  • It also look like it's an industry on the rise with search volumes increasing consistently over the last few years.
  • If you manage to find ways to make money it's definitely a niche ripe for the taking. (Fashion/beauty is usually a great niche to monetize since it's a big spender in people's lives)
Since the competition isn't very harsh you can put almost all of your focus on creating great content, and loads of it. You will honestly be able to rank well without much more than proper optimization and targeting with your content. As you eventually learn more about seo and building links you can dominate completely.
Since you're a writer this is perfect for you since you can focus on producing a lot of great content.
Basically your job in the beginning is going to consist of the following: find what people are searching for and creating content targeting those searches.


What you wrote about creating a hub for the industry is definitely the way to go. Become the missing brand in your industry that people know and turn to.

While your argument about not being original is fair, nothing ever really is. Almost all websites and their content out there are just a mixture of things that already exist.
Your job isn't to reinvent the wheel, it's to collect, summarize and present this information in the best and easiest to understand way possible.
The same is true for courses & books, the good ones are just really clear and easy to understand for its readers, because the author has a good grasp of the material.

Creating content with a purpose
A lot of companies fall into the trap of thinking, "Oh, we need a blog with content that we regularly update". What they don't think about is how and if people actually want to read what they put out.
"Build it and they will come" is a favorite quote among many, but before people "come" they actually need to find out that you exist. You need an acquisition channel. For content that has a longer lifespan and attraction, that medium almost always is search engines in one way or another.
Therefore it's important that you create your content with purpose and don't just create without a real aim in sight.

Different types of content will serve different purposes.
They also serve different intents in people's search behavior, all might not have a viable path to long-term search traffic, but the important part is that they all serve a purpose.
When people are searching they're always looking for something specific and that something is reflected in the keywords they use.
Your job as a site owner is to find that "something", this is often called intent or search intent.
Let that be the filter for when you're deciding what you create.

Examples of content types & their purpose:
  • Evergreen/long lifespan content that targets search terms. Usually guides, faq pages
    • Brings in passive traffic in the long-run
  • Interviews
    • Short term traffic from sharing in community and social media, may also yield links if the people you interview have their own following. Interviews are usually also a great way to get a foot into the industry and building some relationships with key people.
  • Quizzes & Tools
    • These are great for attracting links. Your niche also has quite a few searches regarding quizzes and color pallets which means that they can also bring long-term traffic. Lastly, tools and quizzes are usually a great way to build an email list, which is the only true channel "in your control"
  • Review / Affiliate content
    • These pages usually target keywords such as best x 2019 or individual products and reviewing them. The people searching for these terms are eventually looking to purchase something. Therefore the purpose of the content is to help these people find out what they should buy and then doing so via your affiliate link.


Of course there are loads of small seo "tricks" and methods that could be used to speed things up. But, the most important thing is just getting started, right there you beat out a big part of the population.


A process for your content:
  • Write down words, questions & problems that you think describes the industry and it's different areas.
    • You already mentioned some before: Seasonal Color Analysis, Personal Styling, Body Shape Typing, and Personality Typing.
    • I looked through these quickly and "seasonal color analysis" is very relevant and specific to your industry. It's base keyword "color analysis" also seems to be mostly things related to that. Personal styling is broader but you can use more specific words after(these are called modifiers) "personal styling" to niche down to your industry. "Body shape typing" is broad and the intent seems to be mostly fitness without modifying the search. If you instead take the different body shapes(hourglass, pear etc.) and use a modifier, you'll find some relevant keywords. "Pear shape fashion", "hourglass fashion"
  • Read blogs and sites in your industry regularly, map out what common themes and words they use. Try to find patterns and things that seem universal.
    • I read through a few sites and posts and found things like the kibbe model which lead me to several great keywords such as: "Kibbe quiz" & "kibbe types"
  • Pop your list of words into some tools that give you keyword ideas
    • Keywordtool.io(Free)
    • Answer The public(Free)
      • Just enter a keyword and the tool gives you examples of real questions in which people use that keyword, perfect for topic ideation and getting a quick hang of the important parts of a topic
    • Keywords everywhere (Free)
      • This chrome extension overlays data about keywords in places like Google search. It shows you both volume per month as well as keyword suggestions that it gathers.
  • Get the montly search volume from Google keyword planner
    • Google's own planning tool created for their ad platform. This feature lets you paste in a list of keywords and it spits out the monthly search volume. Nowadays it does have a few more restrictions though, the main one being that to se detailed numbers instead of jsut intervals, you need to be spending some money on Google ads. Though I'm sure if you just ask someone on the forum nicely, such as @andyblack , they'll probably help you out through their own account.
  • Look these keywords up by googling them. What results come up, what type of content is it. Try to see if you can guess what intent a keyword has before Googling.
  • Group your keywords into topics by looking at which ones showed a significant amount of the same results in Google. It's a good way to get some quick insight but don't rely on it blindly. Your objective is to create a list of topics that you'll eventually make into real content.

I attached an excel sheet that I quickly put together with some keyword ideas and their volumes. It isn't sorted so there may be some really irrelevant ones. Some

Finding and using Keywords isn't about sprinkling some random words that have volume into your content. Many times the keywords you need aren't even what you personally call things. It's about finding the language, words and terms that your audience and industry use and then applying that to your site.
In short: learn to speak the language of your audience.


Your writing is definitely something I can see people really enjoying to read and therefore becoming returning readers as well. You just need to create some content that has the acquisition channel built in(search traffic).


The model of your own creation that you mentioned, is that something that you've gone public with? If so, how has the response been?
If not, it's a perfect way to get a foot into the community on forums and sites like Reddit.
Create a nice graphic with a watermark and show it to the community. A great way to introduce something like this on a forum is usually to write what is essentially a full blog post but instead of publishing it on your site you publish it on the forum, graphics and all.
Do create a page for it on your website as well. If you succeed in making it popular you will have created a whole new search term that you now dominate because you created the term.


Other ways to get traffic(brief touch)
Of course seo isn't going to be your only way to get traffic, nor am I advocating it being.

Your niche is very community-driven which is perfect for driving traffic from other channels.
Traffic from search engines is a long-term strategy but there's no reason not to have the focus dialed in from the beginning. With that I mean to create your content with a purpose/focus, targeting what people are looking for through search.

Become an active part of your community(if you aren't already.) This includes being a regular contributor on sites and communitys that have your audience. To build a name the best idea is to find the most popular place and then putting a lot of your focus in being known on that platform.

....
Another interesting channel is Pinterest, which it always is for the fashion industry.
Pinterest as you said is definitely a huge channel in your industry. The nice thing about Pinterest is that it's also quite great at driving traffic.
As far as I can see, Pinterest also ranks well for a lot of the important keywords. That usually means that it's quite easy to rank with your own website, in your case it also means that you can get some wicked visibility if you manage to place your pins on these "category pages". I'm not an expert on Pinterest marketing but I am an avid personal user. Maybe someone from the forum with some Pinterest marketing experience could lend a hand?
Since Pinterest is a driving force all your posts should therefore have good looking images & graphics optimized for Pinterest. Install a pin button directly on your site as well to further encourage people to share your content.


------------------------------
I don't know if I'm allowed to recommend things on other forums but there is a particular 30 day guide which @eliquid among others helped write.
Does anybody know if I'm allowed to link it?

That guide would fit your situation perfectly, I personally keep coming back as well as referring to it since it so good.

It basically walks you through the whole process of starting a site like this, the ideation, planning, technical setup, content creation, marketing, monetization, mindset etc.


Monetization:

This has been covered a lot already so I'll keep it brief.

Ideas for monetization:
  • Affiliate
    • Affiliate for clothes that are included in different styles.
    • Reviewing clothes and different products
  • Courses & Ebooks, these work even better if you start out building a brand that people trust since these products do need a bit of trust for people to be willing to buy them from you.
  • Referrals to stylists - essentially selling leads, online ones are probably the easiest since you won't have to worry about location as much.
  • Marketing for stylists - Letting them advertise or even sponsor posts on your site.
  • Services such as color-analyze yourself like a PRO but more useful so that people are willing to pay for them.
The best ways usually aren't obvious straight away, but rather come from being a part of the community and finding the problems that need solving.




Hopefully you can use something from my rambling, if there's anything you wonder about, just ask. :)
 

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Hopeful

Hopeful

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Hey Hopeful! (Great name btw)
Thanks! :)

A few observations:
Ok, this was more than a few observations. You took a deep dive and even made me a spreadsheet!

Your writing is definitely something I can see people really enjoying to read and therefore becoming returning readers as well. You just need to create some content that has the acquisition channel built in(search traffic).
Thank you. Since I'm planning to connect lots of different theories, my articles will include lots of search terms.

The model of your own creation that you mentioned, is that something that you've gone public with? If so, how has the response been?
I haven't "gone public," but I've shown it to friends and even tried it out on a couple of people (personal styling). They seemed to understand it pretty intuitively, and the girls who put my system into practice now love how they look. :) I'm not very active on online forums and stuff, but, as you say below:

If not, it's a perfect way to get a foot into the community on forums and sites like Reddit.
Create a nice graphic with a watermark and show it to the community. A great way to introduce something like this on a forum is usually to write what is essentially a full blog post but instead of publishing it on your site you publish it on the forum, graphics and all.
Do create a page for it on your website as well. If you succeed in making it popular you will have created a whole new search term that you now dominate because you created the term.
That's a great idea. I already created a landing page with an email sign-up. I linked to the site on the Pinterest page I created for the brand. I just made a free site b/c I can't afford real hosting yet, but I wanted to have somewhere to send people.
Screen Shot 2019-06-15 at 3.06.51 PM.png
My goal is to create a web course, so I set a date to light a fire under my feet. :D


Hopefully you can use something from my rambling, if there's anything you wonder about, just ask. :)
You were not rambling at all. I know nothing about SEO, so you were very helpful. Thank you for taking the time and effort to help me out.
 
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Hopeful

Hopeful

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Update:

I'm combining research and marketing by going on Pinterest and following every single board that pertains to my niche. (It's tedious, but I think it will be worth it.) Then I'll create my own boards and repin from the boards I followed. This will double as research for my blog posts, which I will create pins for once I write. Then I'll do basically the same thing with YouTube for my video content. (The free videos, not the web course.)
 
OP
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Hopeful

Hopeful

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@Ax3 , I'm re-reading my reply to you, and I hope I didn't come across as a know-it-all. I was trying to tell you the ways that I'm implementing your advice or planning to implement it, but it might've come across as cocky. Thanks again for your detailed write-up; it was hugely helpful and very timely for the next stage of my plan!
 

Ax3

New Contributor
Jul 9, 2018
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@Ax3 , I'm re-reading my reply to you, and I hope I didn't come across as a know-it-all. I was trying to tell you the ways that I'm implementing your advice or planning to implement it, but it might've come across as cocky. Thanks again for your detailed write-up; it was hugely helpful and very timely for the next stage of my plan!
Not at all, it sounds like you're ready to start with a plan in mind. Which is great! No worries, glad to help :)
 
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Hopeful

Hopeful

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Today I followed all the Pinterest boards I could find related to "Kibbe," "Zyla," "Color Analysis," and "Dressing Your Truth." There are other terms I can search for later, but those four were a good start.

Then I created a few boards (collections of links, for those unfamiliar with Pinterest). I made one for blogs and videos, one for personal stylists, and one for books. I think I've identified all the major players in the niche (at least for blogs and videos). I might come across more later, but I won't sweat it for now. I'm pretty sure I haven't missed anyone major. These Pinterest boards will be my my research database for blog posts.

I also created a YouTube channel and subscribed to some relevant channels. I took note of how many subscribers the active channels had. They ranged from 3k to 35k. So, even the most popular channels in this niche are fairly small. There weren't many YouTube channels devoted to Seasonal Color Analysis or Style Type Theory. Blogs and Pinterest are definitely more popular. However, a few YouTube channels have dedicated followings.

What I didn't do today was write descriptions for my Pinterest profile/boards or YouTube channel. I didn't want people to find me until I had set things up. :) Now that my Pinterest and YouTube profiles are presentable, I can write some search engine optimized descriptions tomorrow.
 
OP
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Hopeful

Hopeful

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The rest of the week of June 17 (when I last posted), I continued to actively post on a popular forum for my niche. I learned a lot, but I also got discouraged, because I encountered a lot of people who know more than I do about color analysis, Kibbe types, etc. That discouragement slowed my momentum. However, I remembered that my job is to curate and simplify, not to know every detail about every theory. Plus, if I don't know something, I can learn it.

Then, for the past three weeks, I prepared for an out-of-state move, said goodbye to everyone in my hometown, and settled into my new place. I took a training course to become a substitute teacher, which will be a flexible slowlane job for me!

While I was moving, I pretty much dropped everything else in my life. So it's been three weeks since I've worked on this project. Bleh. Not a good feeling. However, it was a choice. I feel that I did need to focus completely on moving. But now I'm settled, and it's time to get back to work. :)

Launch date for my web course: January 2020

What I Need to Do Before Then:

Write Blog Posts/Create Videos (the content will be basically the same for both):
  • Overview of the Different Style Typing Systems
  • How All the Style Typing Systems Connect
  • Spring/Ingenue/Sanguine Style*
  • Summer/Romantic/Phlegmatic Style*
  • Autumn/Natural/Choleric Style*
  • Winter/Dramatic/Melancholy Style*
  • I Can't Find my Type/Season! Where the Classic Type Fits
*My unifying system relies on the ancient Greek Four Humors.

These are not final titles, but topics. :) I'm looking forward to writing the first two blog posts, in particular, because they will help me figure out exactly where I'm going with this brand and with the web course.

Create more Pinterest boards and get more active on the site (repinning, etc.). I'm not sure how active to be on Pinterest; gotta take 10 minutes to read about that and decide.

Post on forum(s) every day. I'm debating whether or not to join Facebook groups in addition to the forum I'm currently on. Pro: more exposure. Con: Potential privacy issue; blurring lines between business and personal.

Create the web course! Need to do more research on how to do this. (Edit: may do an ebook instead, if I think the market would respond better to it.)
 
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Hopeful

Hopeful

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@ChrisV No, not fibro. My symptoms are a bit different—less pain, more autoimmune symptoms. It's not fun, but it does keep me focused on my top priorities (silver linings).
 

ChrisV

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Oof, an exgirlfriend of mine had Autoimmune issues. They can be brutal.

As I'm sure you now that happens when your immune system doesn't know which cells are yours and which are foreign, so it just attacks your own body.

Here are a couple resources that can hopefully be helpful:



 

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