Lydia Sweatt is a writer who loves balancing her article/blog time indoors with a healthy dose of nature. She bikes, hikes, and identifies edible plants along the way.
How to Choose the Best Niche for Your YouTube Channel
JUMP TO SECTION:
- But First, What Is a YouTube Niche?
- 1. Choose a Niche Within a Niche
- 2. Choose a Niche That Gives You The Most YouTube Views
- 3. Check Out the Competition for Your Niche
- 4. Choose a YouTube Niche that Provides Endless Video Work
- 5. Pick a YouTube Niche You’re Passionate About
Choosing a YouTube niche is a big decision. Every viewer will use your niche as a way to answer one question: Is this channel right for me?
But that’s just one end of the spectrum. After that, you have YouTube’s algorithm to consider. It will analyze your channel’s genre so it can serve your videos to people with similar interests.
If you make a mistake when choosing your niche, rebranding can be a nightmare. That’s why it’s safer to think deeply about your niche, and then create your channel.
In this episode of TubeTalk, we chat with Jeff of El Jefe Reviews about how to choose a niche on YouTube. Jeff gained more than 60,000 subscribers after narrowing his channel's focus. He went from making general tech content to reviewing personal audio, like earbuds, headphones, and speakers. And it worked!
Are you ready to finally pick a YouTube niche? Keep reading to choose the best one for your channel.
But First, What Is a YouTube Niche?
Really quickly, we want to define what a YouTube niche is for creators who don’t know. A niche is the genre or subgenre creators focus their content on. There are countless niches on YouTube, from outdoor workouts to makeup tutorials to video game coding. Focusing on one genre helps you attract people who are interested in a specific topic.
More than anyone, the folks at YouTube want you to have a niche. It helps their algorithm categorize your content and recommend it to like-minded viewers.
Also, according to YouTube, you should “find your niche” and “rally a community of fans” to become a successful creator.
“Niches vary in size from huge communities, like those who play the game Fortnite, to smaller communities, like antique car collectors,” YouTube states in a Creator Academy course. “Groups like these are seldom served by traditional media, so they usually are more enthusiastic when they find a show tailored to their interests – and this enthusiasm can lead to more views, watch time, and engagement.”
1. Choose a Niche Within a Niche
On YouTube, the more specific your content is, the better.
Let’s say you plan to launch a comedy channel. Telling jokes or creating skits that appeal to a broad audience isn't enough to build a following. Everyone loves to laugh, but people are amused by different things. To reach a specific audience, you might create funny videos about shopping at Walmart or the hassles of being at the airport.
El Jefe Reviews has a niche within a niche within a niche. There are three levels to his content that get narrower the closer you look:
El Jefe Reviews is:
- A tech channel.
- A tech channel that reviews personal audio.
- A tech channel that reviews personal audio, specifically wireless earbuds, headphones, and speakers.
Before Jeff decided to make his channel more focused, he could only claim the first label – general tech channel.
“I figured that I had to be talking about everything; I thought general tech was the way to go until somebody sort of educated me and let me know, like, ‘Hey, that isn’t it. You need to laser focus on a niche, and if you can find a niche within that niche, then that’s really going to be where you find your people,” Jeff says.
To find a focused niche, ask yourself two questions:
- Does my potential niche have a subgenre?
- Are creators ignoring a subgenre I could easily cover?
2. Choose a Niche That Gives You The Most YouTube Views
Why does El Jefe Reviews focus on personal audio instead of general tech? It’s simple: When Jeff got more views covering earbuds and headphones, he didn’t dismiss it as a fluke. He investigated those flashes of success and realized his audience was interested in personal audio, not general tech.
“When I did my first headphone video, it outperformed my other content,” Jeff says. “I was lucky to get 50 or 60 views on a video; this headphone video was pushing 300, 400, 500 views. Maybe two videos later, I did a video on a set of earbuds that had just been released. That video ended up pushing 1,000 in the first week…. I noticed a pattern there.”
Don’t be afraid to create lots of videos and experiment within your niche to see what works. In fact, it’s wise to make dozens of videos in your first few months on YouTube.
3. Check Out the Competition for Your Niche
Choosing a YouTube niche is about more than having a hobby. What if millions of other creators have the same interest, and they have millions of subscribers already? That makes it harder to break through as a new creator.
Now you have a tough decision to make. Do you fight your way through the digital crowd or choose a niche with less competition?
We’re not saying the first option is impossible. But it’s easier to grow on YouTube if you choose the road less traveled, a.k.a, less competition. That’s a lesson Jeff learned while growing his channel. He discovered it was easier to get views with focused content (personal audio versus general tech). Jeff didn’t have to compete with massive tech channels; he was doing something totally different.
“At the time when I was doing it, there weren’t that many [channels doing personal audio],” Jeff says. “The stuff was covered by general tech channels that do a lot of mobile technology, but none of them were hyperfocused on it. At the time, there were maybe three or four of us back in 2017, 2018. Now there are 40 or 50.”
The lesson? If you have a unique idea, take it seriously before another creator has the same epiphany.
4. Choose a YouTube Niche that Provides Endless Video Work
In this TubeTalk episode, our co-host Dan asked Jeff an interesting question.
“Do you ever feel like there are only so many headphones, and you’ve reviewed all of them?” Dan asks.
“No,” Jeff says. “There has been a tidal wave – a tsunami if you will – of wireless headphones and earbuds since 2016-2017, and it has not slowed down. Even the [computer] chip shortage [during the pandemic] barely made a dent in what’s going on here…. If anything, I have too much work. There are so many products. There are so many new ones coming out.”
Pro tip: Choose a niche that gives you plenty of videos to make. You don’t want to focus on a topic where you run out of ideas in the next four months.
5. Pick a YouTube Niche You’re Passionate About
Does your niche motivate you to wake up, film videos, and actually be excited about the process? It takes time to build a YouTube channel, so that passion has to come from you and only you. Make sure you’re on YouTube for the right reasons, which should be a combination of passion, community building, and, yes, even financial freedom.