In the first few months when I launched The Niche Movement, I initially wrote a handful of blog posts from “Leadership Lessons from Jay-Z” to “Skip Your Career Fair 30 Under 30 List”. In the beginning the blog posts were infrequent and I only wrote “when I had time.” Looking back on my “How I Found My Niche” series, I’m realizing blogging doesn’t take require more than 45-60 minutes of your time. Sure, writing day in and day out, it can add up, but when you have something you are passionate about, writing comes easy. In January 2014, a year after launching and building a tribe nationwide, I wanted to provide more content to The Niche Movement’s audience. After doing some research, I noticed that sites like the Huffington Post and Post Grad Problems provided content that was built on other contributing editors and bloggers. Second, on a weekly basis, I have people that stumble across the Niche Movement that want to help or have an idea that will resonate with twenty-somethings. Lastly, I wanted to give others a chance to share their real-world experiences and advice that aligned with the purpose of The Niche Movement.
In less than 6 months, we now have 12 contributing editors and have a total of 55 blog posts. In this time we have established a blogging schedule where we release at least one new blog post per week and have tripled our audience outreach.
The one contributing editor who has been the backbone of this new initiative and success has been Amma Marfo. Amma is is the Assistant Director of Student Activities for Involvement and Assessment at Emmanuel College in Boston, MA. Her values are completely in line with The Niche Movement and what I personally believe - specifically finding a career path that suits students skills and talents.
Getting to know Amma over the last several months, I have learned that she is a lifelong learner and avid reader/writer. At the top of her resume, aside from her full-time job at Emmanuel, is her accomplishment in writing her first book called “The I’s Have It: Reflections of Introversion in Student Affairs.” See, Amma has a very eloquent writing style and has the amazing ability to take a recent book she has read and extract out the important or relevant pieces that will provide real world advice to college students. She has packaged her six blog posts into a “See What Sticks” series on our site.
One of my favorite See What Sticks blog posts Amma wrote was “Questlove’s Guide to Success at the Office.” In this post, Amma shared Questlove’s story for his love of music that has translated into a love of life and career advice. The biggest advice that Amma shared in this post that correlated to Questlove’s journey is that it may not be your first job out of college that will allow you to build your masterpiece but you will learn skills that will help you create it in the future.
After reading and sharing posts like this one with our audience, I cannot thank Amma enough for her sharing her wisdom to help recent graduates succeed in the real world. As I reflect on the decision to create a contributing editor style of writing for the Niche Movement’s blog, I am so thankful that talented writers like Amma are using The Niche Movement as a venue to inspire others. I created a platform for others to share their ideas, wisdom, experiences, and real-world advice and it is people like Amma who are taking this platform to the next level. Amma is not only helping build her brand, but she is offering much needed advice to an issue that too many young adults need to hear.
In addition to Amma’s writing skills, she also shares the same amazing qualities that several of the people I have already introduced possess: she is a connector, genuine, insightful, and most importantly, cares about other’s success. Because of these super powers, I invited Amma to be featured in our May #NicheStory interview and she graciously accepted. During the interview, we talked introversion as it relates to the job search and networking - a subject we are both passionate about. The great piece of advice Amma offered, is that people who are introverted are generally great at listening and storing information away for a future time. Introverts need to take advantage of this skill and use it to their advantage while in interviews and networking settings.
As we get closer to day 30 in this blogging journey you have seen how an idea that was created with a passion for helping college students has grown into what it is today. When you take a step back, The Niche Movement really began simply with the meetings in my office with students that needed career advice. Then it grew when I would go to a campus and speak to students, and grew more when I had our first virtual cohort. However, adding this component of contributing bloggers has amplified the message in ways I could have never done so alone.
What They Taught Me:
The experience of bringing Amma and other talented writers on board has opened my eyes up to a much better content creation model. Now when students go to the Niche Movement for advice they can find a wide variety of perspectives and ideas around the concept of finding their niche. Amma particularly offers our audience that identifies as introverts, excellent advice and helpful tips.
How They Inspired Me:
Amma has inspired me to write and to write often. As I near the end of my 30 day blogging journey, I have not only created a habit but a passion to write at least once a week and not just for the Niche Movement but for other blogs and for bigger projects. Getting to know Amma this year has been an opportunity that has helped me get closer to finding my niche, and has lead me to a new and exciting project I will be announcing on day 30.
If you have a passion for something or a vision, don’t rely solely on yourself to execute that vision. Find ways to include others in the process and you will not only be creating opportunities for others, but most importantly they will bring new life and diverse perspectives to the table. Your audience will appreciate the well-rounded content you provide. A movement may start with one person, but it only gains the momentum necessary to create change with the help of others.