I realize this is out of the realm of experience for some of us here on Permies, but I value this community's responses more than being a stranger on some other forum.
My wife and I are ready to take the plunge on a side business - the classic Blog/YouTube/Social Media monetization strategy - I know the field is crowded, but we're fine with making only a small (or nonexistent) income because homesteading is a passion of ours, and we're doing it already.
however, there are two co-occurring strategies that I am not sure which one is a better choice, from a financial/marketing perspective:
Choice One - Make ONE Homesteading site/channel/SM account and run all our resources through this one name, regardless of content type; this would be advantageous in this way: we would be pooling all our views/site visits, and our totals would increase more quickly to meet ad revenue provider requirements(hopefully Google Adsense, then leverage into Ezoic or Mediavine if for some astronomical chance we end up making it big.)
Choice Two - Make a Separate site/channel for each area of interest - Permaculture/Gardening, Crafting, Woodworking, and Homesteading/Frugal and running each independently; the advantage here would be keyword and SEO optimization within the niche, hopefully leading to more random exposure through browser searches, rather than rely on SM marketing(although we would still do it, of course).
TLDR: should I diversify and specialize, in terms of online edu-tainment content creation, or should I or be a one-stop-shop generalist?
This is purely anecdotal, but the guy who runs GardenFork (very much choice one) noticed swings in viewership on YouTube when he would change topics. I forget the exact details, but it was something like: he'd do 3 videos on gardening, and then 1 video on home maintenance and viewership would drop substantially. The hypothesis was that people had tuned in expecting garden videos and were put off by the change.
As a consumer, I take in a bit of both styles, but I'd say that I reliably consume everything from niche feeds and just sample bits and bobs from the generalists.
Jeff Sullivan wrote:I'd say that I reliably consume everything from niche feeds and just sample bits and bobs from the generalists.
I agree. Maybe don't spread yourself too thin, but instead concentrate on your strong suit. Blog about what you are most interested in and spend the most time on, especially if you have an unusual realm of interest.
After hearing from y'all, praying on the problem, and discussion with my business partner(wife), I think this is what we'll do:
Start with JUST gardening and permaculture content, on a single site; IF this is successful and swells, we will continue in this niche, then start a concurrent crafting/making section of the site(clearly delineated), but start another separate Social media profile to market to that niche.
and, of course, post our progress on both here on Permies(as both niches are a good fit here)
TLDR - separate social media profiles/YouTube channels that ONLY discuss the content of that type pointing back to a single site with clearly marked content sections - hopefully the best of both worlds.
I think it depends on your format. If you start as a garden permaculture outlet, and gather a following doing that, I could easily see how you're going to alienate a bunch of your followers by suddenly looking at something which could be considered a separate focus.
I think you have your idea surrounded, though, Dustin.
I am currently doing some market research on permacultural futurism and our transition to more resilient practices for my own residual income stream, as those are the topics I find myself expounding upon most. What platforms are you currently finding best for what type of media approach? For instance, is there a clear winner for you for written material versus video?
In any case, keep us posted, and good luck.
A human being should be able to change a diaper, plan an invasion, butcher a hog, conn a ship, design a building, write a sonnet, balance accounts, build a wall, set a bone, comfort the dying, take orders, give orders, cooperate, act alone, solve equations, analyze a new problem, pitch manure, program a computer, cook a tasty meal, fight efficiently, die gallantly. Specialization is for insects.
-Robert A. Heinlein
SEO is all about valuable and relevant content. There are of course many factors here, but content is the reason people will come to you.
It will be very helpful to find niches (research via google trends, or keyword search tools, and by seeing what successful people in your field are and aren’t covering already) in which to express your knowledge and expertise in order to secure a spot (ideally one of the top three) in the search results.
A concern with “generalization” would be that you are competing with every other generalized piece of content in your space. That being said, keeping your content under one “identity” is definitely a great strategy to aggregate traffic, and share expertise across several related fields.
My favourite piece of “marketing knowledge” comes from Seth Godin (paraphrased); “You don’t need 1000 people who like you - but only 10 people who love you.” Those 10 people who love you, will tell their friends and spread your message, and inform your direction. That’s who you need to create content for.
If you create helpful and informative content, people will show up!
Been there. Done that. Went back for more. But this time, I took this tiny ad with me:
Hope in a World of Crisis - Water Cycle Restoration