expert

When you’re looking to start a new blog, you most likely won’t know that much about your niche.

How can you build an authority blog and establish it as an authority in the industry if YOU, yourself are NOT an authority?

That’s a question that a lot of people getting started with blogging have, and it’s a fair question.

My first blog ever was based around a specific education niche. It’s still live and making money for me so I don’t want to give away the niche entirely. However, it was a niche I had an interest in, but knew nothing about.

Today, it’s a pretty well established authority in its niche.

So how did it become an authority?

It’s because of the content that was on the site.

The reason people were engaged with my site, and the reason people linked to my site and shared my content wasn’t because they knew me professionally.

It wasn’t because they saw Chris Lee as an experienced professional in their niche and instantly gave me credibility.

It wasn’t because they knew “WHO” created the site.

It was because of “WHAT” was on the site.

It was high-quality, accurate content that was better than anything out there at the time.

It was helpful, well put together, and backed up with a lot of research.

What’s the difference between you and an actual authority?

Let’s say you wanted to build an authority blog about golf tips. You love golf, but you’re not very great at it. If someone asks you to analyze their swing, you’re most likely to repeat something you saw while watching The Golf Channel.

Now, let’s say Tiger Woods wanted to start a site about golf tips.

He could probably write content for years off the top of his head. You… you would need to do your own research on what the best ways to improve your game are.

But that doesn’t mean you can’t build a blog that becomes one of the biggest authorities on the sport.

The main difference is: You’re not writing content off the top of your head. You’re putting together content after doing sufficient research on the topic.

For my main blog that I run now, in the beginning, I knew nothing about the niche. Well, I knew basic things since it was something I was half interested in… but I was nowhere near knowledgable enough to consider myself a qualified authority to write about the topic.

Today, the blog is the #1 authority in its niche. I could talk for days about the niche now. Because I’ve studied it extensively to grow out my site into a useful site for others.

I didn’t write the content off the top of my head. I did the research.

Real authorities slap their faces on their sites and put their names behind it. They get a lot of press, they get a lot of free links, and they get instant credibility due to WHO they are.

That’s NOT what building an authority blog means.

Building an authority blog requires creating something great that people find valuable.

You DON’T need to be an expert. Don’t let that hold you back from starting your own blogs.

18 Comments

  • Reply
    Theo
    May 27, 2015 at 4:15 pm

    Couldn’t have agreed more Chris,
    You’ve just said it all. You know, I was thinking of starting a site in the health niche some time ago but what stopped me was the fact that I no nothing about the area I wanted to focus on.

    Even now, I still thinks about it. You mentioned that you have an interest on the education niche but knows nothing about it, what of when you’re neither interested in it nor knows anything about it?

    I was reading one book yesterday and it said that if you knows nothing about any niche and want to pursue it, that you should pick up the top 3 best seller books on that niche and study it well that way, you’ll become familiar with it.

    But apart from that, how else do you carry out your own research on a niche u don’t know?

    Sorry for my long comment and thanks for sharing.

    • Reply
      Chris Lee
      May 27, 2015 at 4:35 pm

      Great question and comments, Theo.

      I remember hearing that 3 book rule. It’s a good idea, but I forgot who said it.

      If you don’t know anything about your niche, and don’t even have an interest… the way to do your research is by working on the site.

      One article at a time… As you write your articles, you’re researching the topic, looking up sources, etc.

      As you do research on industry trends, what’s popular in your niche, what’s working for your competitor sites, you will slowly develop a strong knowledge of the topic.

      It’s not all at once. You don’t read 3 book and create an authority site based on what you learned from the books. You learn as you go.

      Hope that helps.

      • Reply
        Theo
        May 28, 2015 at 2:42 am

        I think it was Tim Ferris that mentioned the 3 books stuff in his book “the 4 Hour Work Week”.

        Yea, I do agree with you about researching and finding what’s working for other sites on the niche. I’ve been to open one of the sites you commended for carrying out research “similarweb.com” but it seems its down.

        Have you tried using Long Tail Pro for KW research?

        Still trying to pick up a niche/keyword to build a site on after going through the short report I got from you when I subscribed to your list.

        Will reach out to you if I have any question(s) 🙂

        Thanks

        • Reply
          Chris Lee
          May 29, 2015 at 1:03 pm

          Oh, thanks for the reference. Similar web should be up now, it’s working for me. Sounds good, best of luck!

  • Reply
    Theo
    May 28, 2015 at 6:44 am

    Hello Chris,
    I’m sorry to border you again :). Just want to ask you a little question:

    I’m new with Google KW Planner, have been a fan of Long Tail pro but want to get familiar with KW Planner.

    My question: When performing KW research with it.

    1. Do you use the “Search for new keyword and ad group ideas” or any of the other choices below it?

    2. After generating the keywords, do you focus on the “Ad group Ideas” or “Keyword Ideas” tab?

    3. Is there any additional filter(s) you usually apply?

    4. Don’t know if you have any good resource on how to use KW planner or maybe that should be your next post :).

    Thanks for your time.

    • Reply
      Chris Lee
      May 29, 2015 at 1:01 pm

      Hey Theo, no worries. I don’t use Long Tail Pro.

  • Reply
    Rob
    May 28, 2015 at 4:52 pm

    Hey, I’m thinking about starting a site optimized for advertising revenue like yours.

    What approach would you personally take:
    1. Particular topic (but broad), for example: soccer
    2. Site covering various interesting topics (but targetting the same audience,) for example: science, new technologies & facts about world and environment etc

    Which one would be better to monetize with AdSense and advertising in general? One particular market vs broader approach? Thanks in advance.

    • Reply
      Chris Lee
      May 29, 2015 at 1:00 pm

      Hey Rob, for me I would go with #1 and choose one particular market. #2 is way too broad to pursue, especially if you’re a one-man team.

  • Reply
    Johann
    September 27, 2015 at 11:37 am

    Hey Chris,
    Been reading about how to build nIche sites since 2013. This article really explained the “not an expert” but still you can start building niches.ü thanks man

    • Reply
      Chris Lee
      September 27, 2015 at 11:37 pm

      Cool, thanks for reading.

  • Reply
    Bhuboy
    January 19, 2016 at 7:42 am

    This is what I am doing in my main niche site, it is related to my kind of work though I am not an expert with it. Don’t even have the required certificate for it,. But as I go with writing articles for my site, I am learning new things or how to do the things I am currently doing better. At the same time, share it to the people who are also in my field. and base on their responses, I think they are liking it

    • Reply
      Chris Lee
      January 20, 2016 at 3:01 am

      That’s awesome! Thanks for sharing, Bhuboy 🙂

  • Reply
    Rob
    January 28, 2016 at 9:15 pm

    Thanks for this Chris,

    I’m setting out to build an authority site. However, there’s already a site that pretty much covers the whole domain comprehensively. But it’s very old – dated in design and usability.

    I’m pretty sure the content is extremely well optimized since I know of the guy and apparently SEO is his primary skill.

    Any tips on how to surpass an existing authority? Improving on his content is going to be quite an undertaking, and I would like to employ as many best practices as possible to make the venture worth it.

    • Reply
      Chris Lee
      January 29, 2016 at 6:39 pm

      Hey Rob, there are a lot of factors than just that he has good content and covers the niche extensively. If it’s the only competitor worth noting in your niche, then I think that’s a great sign in itself.

  • Reply
    Imer Imran
    October 8, 2016 at 2:09 am

    Hi Chris
    Just finish read up to this post. Thank you for a really good post. Just want to say that I agree with your philosophy on “It wasn’t because they knew “WHO” created the site. It was because of “WHAT” was on the site”.

    Imer

    • Reply
      Chris Lee
      October 11, 2016 at 5:18 pm

      Yes! Glad it helped Imer!

  • Reply
    khim
    February 17, 2018 at 8:32 am

    Hi Chris, great post! I am starting out a new niche site at this point and I am not an authority yet. How, then, would be a better way to introduce ourselves (in the “About” Page) to the people who will be reading our posts/articles? Thanks!

    • Reply
      Chris Lee
      February 22, 2018 at 11:32 am

      You don’t even need an about page yet. In cases like this, forget using your BIO to show your authority and instead publish great content and turn your site into a helpful resource.

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