I have, since about the time around my Junior year of high school, been a bit of a hipster. I never was really into the hipster ‘scene', but I wore some black, thick-framed glasses (with no lenses because I don't actually need glasses) for a couple years. I listen to music that's ‘underground', I don't watch the news or TV, and I say things like, “Ugh, that's sooo mainstream!”
But I've learned that being a business hipster doesn't get you anywhere, and there are good reasons for it.
Here's what I mean.
1. The money is where the trend is
I know, it's tough to make a site or write an article about what's ‘trendy', new, or ‘in'. EVERYONE is writing about it, and everyone wants a piece of the pie.
But that's what's interesting. It's what people are looking for. Heck, I don't care the slightest bit what Justin Bieber is doing or what the latest is with the new, hot actors. Not the slightest bit. But I did look up JB when he made the list of top 50 women on the internet.
Millions and millions and millions of people search for this stuff, even if they don't like it, and if you can have a monetized site that catches these trends, you can get a tiny piece of the huge money bag that gets passed around.
2. Being different is probably more interesting to you than it is to other people
For a while, when I first started blogging, I felt like I had to reinvent the wheel. I wanted to do something new, something that would stand out.
I soon learned that wheels work for a reason, and many typical online business strategies work for a reason. Blog layouts, marketing strategies, title, video making methods; there's a reason that everyone does it that way: IT WORKS.
Doing something different is great, but usually you have to put in quite a few years of doing things the same before you can find an effective way to be different. If you skip the step of joining in with the crowd, I think a lot of your work will come off looking amateur. I only say this because I've looked back at my own work from when I started out.
3. Business is about money, not about style or life-philosophy
When all is said and done, if you want make money, you need to be where the money is. While making personal decisions about what clothes we wear, what movies we watch, and what websites we browse can be quickly changed, and changed with few consequences, the same is not true for our businesses.
If you are going to sit down and plan out the next two years of your online business career, then you need to make sure that you will make some money somewhere.
Things don't always go according to plan, but planning to make money is the first step to making it. If you enter into a dead market just because, “no one else is doing it”, then you will probably not make much money.
Don't get me wrong, you can have a very successful blog about your life, or a popular website about whatever topic you're interested in. But from a business perspective, profitability needs to be part of the equation early on.
There's a difference between being different just to be different, and being different because there's a need. If you see a problem in your industry that no one else has taken the time to fix – then do it. You audience will be grateful, and you can probably get rich from it.
But if you're trying to convince your audience that you are more worth their time than your competitors based solely on the reason that you are unique, I think you are going to be disappointed in the results
Of course, this is just what I've learned so far. I may change my mind in a few years, and this may not work for you. Everyone's internet marketing journey is different, so you need to come to your own conclusions.