Medium is the kind of site where you can write just about anything. But just because you can write about lots of different topics doesn’t mean you should, necessarily. You know that you need to have a niche for your Medium writing. But is it possible to have a couple of different niches?

While it’s best to stick to a single niche, you might find that you could write about a couple of niches if they are related somehow and your audience is interested in both subjects. Be careful not to write about wildly different things that only parts of your audience will care about.

Let’s take a few minutes to understand the distinction here.

Why is it important to have a niche?

Your niche is a certain topic or subset of topics that your content will cover. Having a niche helps your content to stand out because you can establish yourself as an expert in that field.

If you write about anything and everything, it’s hard to establish yourself as an expert. For example, if I write about technology and also baking and a bit about car maintenance, then how will people know what I’m an expert at? All they’ll see is that I write about a bit of everything. How is that any different from some random person on the street who can talk about a bit of everything? Not the most helpful.

But if I can narrow down my focus and talk about all sides of a particular topic, then I can establish that I do know a thing or two about that subject. So, if I write about the pros and cons of Macs and various tips and tricks for Mac users and Mac software and so on, then I’ll be in a good position to show myself as an expert on Macs – or on technology as a whole.

In my mind, it’s important to establish that expertise and authority in order to be that go-to resource for a certain subject.

Just as another example, when I click on the profile of Mark Ellis of Mark Ellis Reviews, I know that I’ll be reading something about technology. He’s established himself as an expert in that field. What he’s not done, is muddied the waters by talking a bit about technology and then a bit about psychology or a bit about relationships, and so on. He’s focused on one topic – or at least group of topics.

Can you have a second niche?

If you’re like me, you no doubt have too many interests and lots of things that you could write about. (If you need some ideas, here’s a list of 37 Medium niches to think about.) But lest I be misunderstood here, just because you can write about them doesn’t mean that you should necessarily.

I can write a ton about mental health, technology, writing, and so on, but the combination of those subjects would be confusing and annoying for my audience.

Some people in my audience might care about mental health and technology and writing, but it’s not likely. More likely, they’ll care about one or two of those subjects – and I’d be shocked if they cared about more than one, really.

So any time I wrote a post about mental health, for example, those people following me who only care about technology or only care about writing won’t find my newly-posted material interesting – at best. And at worst, they might get tired of me posting things they don’t care about and decide to unfollow me.

On the contrary, I want to make sure to stick to something that I know will appeal to the majority of my audience. So this is a point I want to make sure is very clear:

Yes. You can have multiple niches as long as they work together and your audience cares about both. Otherwise, you’ll risk alienating parts of your audience and causing them to lose interest when you post things they don’t care about.

What can happen if you have conflicting niches?

Look, I get the desire to want to write about anything and everything under the sun that interests you, but that might not be a great idea for you and your audience. Think back to the baking example above.

If my my niche is baking, the odds are that my audience isn’t going to care at all about car maintenance. And if I start writing about car maintenance, my established audience is likely to be confused at best and frustrated at worst, and they might even decide to stop following my content.

Yikes.

But let’s say I go ahead and write about a bit of baking and a bit of car maintenance. I might attract some new followers who are interested in car maintenance, but they aren’t likely to care about my baking content. So what happens? I create two separate audiences, and every time I post I’m catering to one and annoying the other. Sooner or later, both separate audiences will have learned that half of my content isn’t interesting to them. That’s not great.

Because – and think with me on this – assuming I’m writing about each of my two niches 50% of the time, I’m only really giving each audience what that audience wants 50% of the time. And that’s not good.

What does that look like, practically?

Think about your current niche (assuming you have one). What does your audience care about? What are they interested in? When I think about my own audience, I have a few ideas in mind.

Now, think about the second niche you’re considering adding to your first. Would your audience truly care about that as well, or would you be splitting your audience in two with some caring about your first niche and some caring about your second but almost no one caring about both things?

Let’s say your niche is baking and you’ve built up an audience around that topic. You probably don’t want to branch out into something like artificial intelligence or Apple products. Why? Most of your audience won’t care. And if you attract new readers with your content about artificial intelligence, how likely are they to care about your stories about baking? Probably not very.

So while you might be interested in both baking and artificial intelligence, those two topics aren’t really complementary and don’t really fit together in a way that makes sense.

But there are other topics that would fit with baking. For example, while you write about baking, you might also talk about:

  • Kitchen organization
  • Nutrition
  • Healthy recipes
  • Family meal preparation

…and the list goes on. But you can see how each of these things ties in with baking. It would make sense to read someone’s thoughts on baking and kitchen organization. In one post, he or she could talk about a favorite recipe and in another, he can talk about how the kitchen is organized or ways she’s found to speed up her food preparation workflow.

Do you see how these topics are complementary?

Yes you can have multiple niches – if they work together

The point I’m hoping to get across here is that is is possible to have multiple niches as long as they actually fit together. And they don’t fit together simply because you like them both. No, you need to put yourself in the shoes of your audience and consider what they want to read. And if you think they would be interested in a second topic as well, then go for it.

I don’t like the idea of being siloed into one particular topic for the entire time I write on a platform, and if you’re like me you don’t either. I get it. So feel free to branch out and explore other topics – and you might find that it works for you to write a one-off post on something that’s not your main topic. I don’t mean here that you could never do that. But don’t try to add that one-off topic to your normal repertoire as though it fits perfectly with the rest of your content – unless it does.

Over time, you may find that your topic drifts a bit, and that’s okay too. You might start off, for example, writing about baking and then find down the road that the majority of your new content is more about kitchen organization than baking – and that’s perfectly fine too. Just make sure you’re remembering what your audience wants.