Is it possible and what will happen?
Last week we took a deep dive into why a niche is important and if you should or should not niche down. This week we are going to talk about what will happen if you change your niche.
And upfront, be aware, changing niches can kill your channel if not done properly. Sometimes it is even better to just start a new channel. Keep reading and find out everything about changing a niche on YouTube.
Here's what we will cover:
If you want to know more about what a niche is and sub niches or super niches, read our article of last week here. It's the basis for this article and follows up on the three layers you have within a niche:
Can you change your niche on YouTube
Of course, you can, but we don't think it's wise. What you can do is change sub or super niches within your overall niche.
For example, if you have a lifestyle channel (which is your main niche) and you choose to change from van life to sailing life or even renovate a cabin in the woods - this could be possible as long as you keep having your lifestyle theme in every single video.
Change your sub or super niches within you overall niche
Your viewers follow you because of you and the life you live!
Example lifestyle YouTube channels:
But if you have a channel that is an educational or professional channel and your overall niche is for example renovating then it isn't a smart thing to change to a lifestyle channel or sometimes make lifestyle-themed videos. You can change from renovating a classic car to a cabin in the woods to a sailboat for example. Your audience loves your technical insights and knowledge, so they most likely will follow you from sub-niche to sub-niche.
Example professional and educational YouTube channels:
Examples to follow?
Our examples aren't all the perfect to follow, but they show you how niching and niching down works and if it is wise to change your main niche. If you look at these channels you can see that with their video's some step out of their main niche - from lifestyle to education and the other way around. Especially Wild we Roam, but we come back to this channel later.
In both situations sticking to your main niche but changing your underlying niche levels, it is likely that you will see a little drop in views and subscribers (see more below in changing niche). But you will not damage your channel.
Can a professional YouTube channel have lifestyle fragments and visa versa?
Yes definitely, those little things make you and your channel authentic and unique. And the other way around a lifestyle channel can have professional elements. Just as long as your main theme stays through to your niche.
If you for example switch between main niches: lifestyle, DIY crafts, Arts, Recipes, Renovating, Fitness/Yoga, to follow a very trendy subject you will most likely attract a lot of subscribers, but all in the wrong target audience. The subscribers and regular viewers from Fitness & Yoga probably aren't interested in DIY crafts or Recipes and visa versa. So this means that with every new video you will have less regular viewers compared to the overal that will like and want to see your next video on Arts.
You will end up with a bunch of subscribers but little to no views
So this is definitely something you do not want to do. You will end up with a bunch of subscribers but little to no views (for example a wonderful couple, with amazing content creation skills - Wild we roam - I Rianne adore them, but they made this mistake) - for more in-depth read the final paragraph.
Sub niches that belong to different niches
You can have sub niches that belong to different main niches. For example a refit video about a sailboat can fit a Lifestyle vlog (for example, the videos of Feel the Breeze Family) but also the main niche technical educational (Samson Boat co).
The main difference is the focus within the videos and therefor the channel. Feel the Breeze family has the main focus on lifestyle and Samson Boat co has the main focus on the technical elements. But both have a technical theme in the videos.
Impact of changing (sub) niche on YouTube
The important part is the difference between changing sub niche - what will have a positive impact for the long run and a negative impact for the short term. And switching between main niche - which will have a positive effect for the short term but a negative effect for the long term.
Changing the main niche on YouTube
When you switch from your main niche like lifestyle vlog to another niche like fitness or health, this will have a short-term positive effect and a long-term negative effect. This is the biggest mistake most YouTubers make.
You follow a trend, outside your main niche, and gain a lot of subscribers and views based on that video, but these subscribers don't fit your target audience and don't like your 'normal' videos.
The best example is Wild we Roam and as said, we love their channel and they are very good at creating content, storytelling, videography and they are one of the sweetest couple we know on YouTube.
If you follow a trend, you might gain a lot of subscribers and vies, but these subscribers don't fit your target audience
On the basis, this is a lifestyle vlog. They switched a lot between sub-niches - van life, sailing, living abroad to now homestead living. These switches were not per definition bad for their channel, maybe the follow-up time was a bit too short. But that isn't the main reason why their channel with 319K subscribers gets on average 14-30k views which should be at least 100K.
Their latest vlogs show this effect very well there you see vlogs about yoga (fitness different main niche) and lifestyle vlogs (their main niche). The lifestyle vlog perform a lot better than the yoga vlog - because most of their loyal subscribers and viewers follow them for their lifestyle vlogs.
But how did they got so many subscribers overall but not so many loyal lifestyle viewers? Well that happened with following trends and leaving their main niche. If you watch their most popular videos, you will understand where the amount of subscribers and viewers came from and why they aren't watching the current videos.
Most of their popular videos are not about lifestyle but photography and overall fitness. So these videos attracted a bunch of views and subscribers but all in the wrong main niche.
Changing sub-niche on YouTube
What the impact is of a switch between sub niches will highly depend on how long your channel exists and how long you have been active in a sub-niche. But in general, the impact has a short term and long term effect:
short term: a dip in views, subscribers, and growth
long term: growth on all levels
For example, Eamen & Bec went from a lifestyle channel focused on van life to renovating a cabin in the woods, Feel the Breeze family went from a lifestyle channel focused on refitting a sailboat to sailing around the world, etc.
Why does this happen?
Well, you have a lot of viewers and subscribers that love your lifestyle and follow you everywhere but a part of those loyal viewers just like a specific part of your lifestyle: like sailing or van life and don't per definition like other content. This means that when you switch a part of viewers won't be that interested anymore to see every one of your videos (and some will even unsubscribe - this is actually the best because how your current subscribers engage on your video, determine the amount of success of you video in short term and long term).
These switches work best if they don't follow up too quickly. People in a new sub-niche have to watch your channel and videos for a while to really became fans and loyal viewers - after that for most of them it doesn't matter if your sail around the world or drive around the world, they just love the content you bring.
Does this apply to professional and educational YouTube channels as well?
Definitely, and every other main niche like DIY crafts: from making your own clothing to pottery there will be a shift, or from cryptocurrency to precious metals.
What is the impact of changing your niche?
Well that depends, if you stay within your main niche, the impact in short term will be a small drop in views, subscribers & growth but in the long term, it will give you the possibility to grow your channel further.
If you change your main niche - then you can better start a new channel.
All of this is a very strategic process and within our course Finding your Niche & Target Audience we share in-depth everything you need to know.
If you have any questions, drop us a message we love to help you out