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Best places to advertise a forum?

Discussion in 'Forum Management' started by JayX, Aug 2, 2013.

  1. JayX

    JayX Active Member

    I've been running an xenForo forum for just over a month now and whilst I love the software, I'm having a tough time getting new members. I don't think there's anything unappealing about my site, and I'm offering plenty of competitions and incentives for people to sign up, the issue is how do I tell people about my site? Where do I go to promote my site in the first place?

    I'm interested in purchasing advertising, as well as doing any free promotion possible. Any advice would be greatly appreciated. :)
     
  2. Shelley

    Shelley Well-Known Member

    forumpromotion.net is a good place.
     
  3. Sheratan

    Sheratan Well-Known Member

    Social Media (Facebook, Twitter) is a good place.

    -edit-
    Ninja.
     
  4. JayX

    JayX Active Member

    Thanks, I've already tried that several times though.

    I hear this a lot, but may I ask how? How do I get people to my facebook/twitter page in the first place?
     
  5. Sheratan

    Sheratan Well-Known Member

    You can use "Recommend" or "Tweet" button to share a thread to your Facebook or Twitter timeline.

    Or you can use some of add-ons here to show your facebook page to your forum.
     
  6. Anthony Parsons

    Anthony Parsons Well-Known Member

    You need to run a public FB account and basically go on a "more friends" type approach, trying to befriend anyone and everyone. There are plenty of people on FB who are all about numbers, regardless who the person actually is. You then hope they're showing their friends posts via their feed, and so forth... thus you suddenly have your recommends showing up on hundreds, eventually thousands, of news feeds.

    It is time consuming to do, but can be done. Once you have that network you just go for it, recommending everything and FB does its job. Its spammy, absolutely, but that is the FB way.

    People launch a forum and think, "I have built it, they will come." It is a fallacy... it takes years and lots of hard work to raise a successful forum. You will need to be constantly engaging people with new and interesting posts so Google is working for you.
     
  7. The Forum Heroes

    The Forum Heroes Well-Known Member


    This does work great, but wade with caution now that facebook has added the do you know this person outside of facebook both when accepting and denying a new friend. No's can lead to "friend mining" which first offense is a 3 day lock from adding or messaging new ppl unless they add or message you 1st. 2nd and 3rd are 7 days each, 4th and 5th 14 days and then any beyond that are 30 days. Ofc you can still post to your timeline during these times to hopefully have it shared along ppl you already pulled in.

    Safest way is make your facebook name someone popular in your niche, make sure your picture and timeline cover story both involve that niche and make a few feed posts about the niche topic first for those ppl that look into you a bit more before adding you. Try to find big groups or pages on your niche too and slowly promote yourself within them..
     
    Anthony Parsons likes this.
  8. silence

    silence Well-Known Member

    The Internet.
     
    Anthony Parsons likes this.
  9. TheBigK

    TheBigK Well-Known Member

    Well, I built it and they did come; one by one. Took several years. Still coming.
     
    john leo, M@rc, iTuN3r and 2 others like this.
  10. optimus

    optimus Member

    Facebook, join in your interest groups or pages and make some post about you forum or advertise.
     
    saucylost likes this.
  11. ShadyX

    ShadyX Well-Known Member

  12. Deepmartini

    Deepmartini Well-Known Member

    You need to fill up your site with interesting content. Even if you have to write it yourself, start threads and grow from there. Make a few dummy accounts if you have to get posts going. Good stuff entices people to join.
     
    saucylost likes this.
  13. mjp

    mjp Well-Known Member

    I think 90% of the answer to the age-old question, "How do I get people to use my forum?" is variable depending on what kind of forum it is. So the answer hinges on 1) What is the main topic? and 2) Who is the target audience?

    You don't advertise shoes the same way you advertise guns, so you wouldn't draw users to a shoe forum the same way you would draw users to a gun forum, ya dig, Henry?

    So which is it, shoes or guns? If it's anything other than those things, I'm afraid I simply don't have any first hand experience or knowledge.
     
    thedude, 0xym0r0n, Dan and 1 other person like this.
  14. JayX

    JayX Active Member

    Thank you for all of the responses.

    Agreed, but how will they find the site? If I have enough content, you think that search engines will start regularly bringing in new and active members?
     
  15. Deepmartini

    Deepmartini Well-Known Member


    Yes, that lures people in. No one wants to go to an empty club or be the first one at the party. You have to fill up the forum with life first, even if it's just you and a handful of friends or dummy accounts replying to each other. Get the ball rolling.

    Also reach out to people in your industry/group and invite them to join. If you emailed a list of 100 people, at least 10 or 20 would become a member (if you have threads in there to entice them). There's your core group.
     
  16. DRE

    DRE Well-Known Member

    @BamaStangGuy guy has used Facebook to great effect when it comes to advertising a forum.
     
  17. Deepmartini

    Deepmartini Well-Known Member


    Also, I have a whole bunch of articles on my blog/training site that discuss this and you may be able to get a few ideas out of them.

    http://membershipexpert.com/tag/sample-content/
     
  18. Jeff Fuqua

    Jeff Fuqua Well-Known Member

    I too have a new site but it's for my hometown. Participation is next to zero and I've nearly exhausted all the inexpensive resources I know of.

    Quick recap:
    • I promote it on all the city's Facebook groups available.
    • I advertise on Facebook itself.
    • I generated an email list of local merchants and emailed them to announce it (since they can add their business to the directory). The goal was to give them free advertising in exchange for $25 items/gift card donations to be given away in the forum.

    The only remaining inexpensive (free) option I know of is to do a press release and send it to the local newspapers. I somewhat doubt it would run but it's worth a try.

    Beyond that, I'm at a loss of how to promote it without pouring more funds into it. I'd love to hear any ideas if anyone has any they'd like to share. Thanks.

    http://www.talkfranklin.com
     
  19. kprojects

    kprojects Well-Known Member

    What about interviewing some of the local merchants? Everyone loves publicity and they'd likely promote the article once its out?
     
    Jeff Fuqua likes this.
  20. Jeff Fuqua

    Jeff Fuqua Well-Known Member

    Nice idea.

    One of the local websites already does this which, when I found it, thought "Dang. Wish I'd thought of it first".

    Maybe there's another approach which might appeal to businesses?
     

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