When people are looking to hire gaming bloggers, the last thing they need is someone who’s merely competent. Don’t just be competent, don’t just know your way around an Xbox 360: specialize. Find a niche within gaming and know more about that niche than anybody else.
Frank Cifaldi is a journalist and gaming historian known for his blog The Lost Levels. At The Lost Levels, Cifaldi analyzes games that never were, and unreleased beta versions of games that we’ve come to know and love. When someone needs the new Halo covered, they don’t call Frank, but when they want to hear about Bioforce Ape or Earthbound 64, he’s the first person they go to.
Action Button Dot Net doesn’t specialize in a niche such as retro or action or puzzle games, but they do have a strong brand thanks to an exacting game reviewing philosophy. All games are reviewed from a fairly harsh perspective: if it doesn’t grab the reviewer’s attention within five seconds of hitting start, they reserve the right to turn it off. Harsh, but it lends the site’s review scores some serious credibility.
You might know a little bit about first person shooters, a bit about casual games and a few things about classic Atari era games, but don’t generalize. There are over thirty million bloggers on the web right now, and the ones you never hear of, it’s probably because they generalize.
What area of gaming do you know more about than anyone else? What area would you be willing to learn more about than anybody else? Could you start a blog dedicated entirely to the history and culture of a single game? Earthbound Central is just that: a blog dedicated solely to the SNES cult hit Earthbound.
The point is to offer something that people can’t get anywhere else: a specialized niche, a certain attitude, brutally honest reviews, or just coverage dedicated solely to their favorite game. If you can provide readers with that, then you have a pretty good shot at standing out from the crowd.
Gilbert S is a freelance writer available on WriterAccess, a marketplace where clients and expert writers connect for assignments.