Freelance writing niches took a hit in 2020, and while content marketing is not as limited as it used to be the past two years, it has definitely changed. Trends are shifting and individuals are researching and spending money differently in 2022.
Here’s my personal opinion about which content markets are going to thrive in the new year.
Do I Really Need a Freelance Writing Niche?
I think every writer should focus on a freelance writing niche so that they can angle themselves as an expert in the industry. I always tell new writers that you aren’t Walmart—you can’t offer everything, and even more so, top clients don’t want “Walmart writers.” Top clients want writers that are experts in their field and are specialized, and they don’t mind paying more for this knowledge.
Of course, there will always be a few success stories from individuals that did not niche down, but I would consider them the exception, not the rule. When I pursued any niche and writing job I could find, I could only make $1,500 per month, and I was putting in a lot more hours than I wanted. Once I niched down to finance, I started making double. Now, I choose to write 10 hours per week or less and bring in $3,000-5,000 each month.
Now that I have niched down and can charge a lot more money, I can be picky about the clients I take. In the beginning, I was desperate for work and put up with some rude clients for the sake of a paycheck.
Should I Pick My Writing Niche Based on Money?
Before I get to the top-paying freelance writing niches, I do think it is important to pick a niche that fits your knowledge and passion to an extent. For example, if you hate talking about credit card legalities and mortgages, maybe finance isn’t for you. Forcing yourself to become an expert finance writer will just lead to burnout. On the flip side, if your passion is knitting with animal hair, you might find yourself limited by how many clients you can find.
There needs to be a balance. If you’re passionate about a niche that isn’t on this list, then don’t switch ships. Figure out how your niche makes money.
Recently, I was chatting with a friend about starting freelance writing. She used to be a preschool and elementary school teacher, has homeschooled her two teens, and loves photography, but it has been a while since her certifications. She might have a hard time breaking into the photography niche or the homeschool niche because they are full of other writers. However, if she positioned herself as an expert on teaching kids photography, her angle would be unique enough to get her published and then she can also land a few regular clients or broaden her niche after building up her portfolio.
7 Top-Paying Freelance Writing Niches for 2022
Of course, I am going to start with my niche since I know it the best. Finance industries need customers and customers need good finance industries. I have been in the finance niche for over a decade, and it has stayed solid, though there is a bigger shift to finance technology versus traditional finance services. If you are looking to break into the finance niche, I would stay away from personal finance and niche down even further. For example, these finance writers are in demand:
- Credit card specialist
- Debt/loan writers
- Investing/stock writers
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While I have been asked to write many insurance pieces as a finance writer, I think that individuals knowledgeable in insurance are a better fit. Insurance writing can be very technical and at times dry. The right insurance writer will be able to tackle important insurance topics while keeping readers engaged. There are many potential insurance clients that need content from individual insurance agents to large auto, home, pet and life insurance companies.
3. Work From Home
Remote working was a necessity for 2020, but even if things go back to normal for most companies, the surge of remote possibilities has opened up new content opportunities. Not only do most outlets need unique remote working content, but all of the remote working software and related businesses need content writers.
4. Online Education and Higher Education
Education is a popular niche, but more online schools and colleges/universities will be competing for students. All of the universities I have worked with have wanted targeted content that drives future online students because online degrees, especially online graduate degrees, earn schools more money than traditional undergrad students.
5. Mental Health
The mental health niche is broad, and you don’t need a license to write articles. However, if you are not licensed as a counselor or therapist, you should angle all of your content to quote professionals or work with generic mental health companies, such as an online meditation app.
6. Alternative Health
While fitness and dieting will always be popular, there is a lot of interest in alternative health topics, such as chiropractic care, CBD use, alternative therapies and diet recovery.
7. Smart Home Tech
With more smart home gadgets and companies hitting the market each year, readers need writers to review products, give easy-to-understand tutorials, and tips. You can cover smart tech for general consumer outlets or target specific companies to create content.