I was advising a client this week on how they should get started with creating their new Blog, and it occurred to me that considering HOW you intend to organize information is a key part of your Blog strategy. Your blog will hopefully be a large number of related articles, so it's going to be increasingly important to ensure that your readers can quickly find the good stuff they are searching for.
“A Blog can help you communicate your specialist knowledge to your chosen market.”
So this is where CATEGORIES come in. Blog Post Categories allow you to organize a large collection of blog posts in a meaningful way that helps to highlight your area of expertise, makes it obvious what you are writing about and easy for the reader to find more related information.
A good structure for categories brings the following benefits:
- Categories help communicate your specialization and knowledge
- Makes it easier for readers to find related information
- Readers can subscribe to relevant articles feeds
- Category keywords help with SEO
Create your Categories
Creating categories is a bit like creating a word map. First identify the main topics, then branch out from these to sub-topics until you have covered all the key areas.
I have found that it's important to get the high-level categories as correct as possible early on, so that you have a firm foundation for developing your Blog.
To check you have them right, try thinking about how you'd use your categories to describe your Blog to someone; hopefully you are using the same words you have in your high level categories!
Do they make sense? Are there too many? Is there some key topic you have missed out?
Time spent thinking through your categories will be a good investment!
If you look at the sidebar on AgentClassroom.org, you'll find a block called 'Real Estate Marketing Knowledge Base', which is a list of all the categories in the Agentclassroom site. This is still a work in process, but nevertheless, you can see an example of how Categories are used to organize Blog posts into (hopefully!) meaningful categories.
Real Estate Marketing Examples
What do you specialize in? What is your blog about?
Your categories may include items such as: Local Real Estate News, Local Housing Trends, Neighborhood / Community articles, Niche Property Type articles (horse property, land, short sales, REO .. etc).
Less is More
I suggest in the early days that you limit the number of categories you have. This will help you maintain focus on what your Blog is all about and it will keep navigation easy for your readers. As time goes by of course, then grow your Categories as your Blog focus becomes more developed!