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Some questions on a few different forumy areas

Discussion in 'Off Topic' started by Steve10, Aug 5, 2011.

  1. Steve10

    Steve10 Well-Known Member

    That's possibly the worst and longest thread title I've ever come up with, but if you took the time to click it then please bear with me.

    Issue Number 1 (Welcoming many, many new members)

    The site's been going about a month and we've had (what I consider) excellent growth (4K, 600 members in roughly that first month), and we currently have a forum at the top of our nodes tree for people to make their own thread and introduce themselves. The problem with that is a lot of new members make one of these threads and then might get zero replies for it because the sheer number of introductions (it's died down a bit but I remember I got online and there had been 20 in about 4 hours) means most people aren't taking the time to say hello and it's a lot of effort for myself or the other admin to do it especially when we have jobs and other threads to respond to ontop of other adminy stuff. We've even hired a moderator who basically is responsibly for welcoming the new members in their threads and helping them learn about the forums, even then a few still fall through the cracks because of online time and whatever.

    I'm sure it's not a big issue with people feeling left out that they haven't been answered but I know that I personally dislike the fact that we manage to miss certain people out and I have noticed if people aren't answered that there is a smaller return rate (I haven't used stats to work this out, just me looking at people and threads and seeing what happens).

    What I was wondering is whether there is a better way of greeting new members to the forums without missing any and also without having the very force feeling of an automatic welcome message which always feel generic? I like the fact that with welcome threads you get a feel for the user so you can reply with a tailored response. So something that might allow us to keep offering tailored responses without leaving anyone out would be good.

    Issue Number 2 (Thread Prefixes or Individual Sub-forums)

    To be honest this isn't an issue until Xenforo 1.1 launches but I've been thinking about it for a while and I'm still not sure what to do about it. I'm not entirely sure but for this one it will probably help out if you have our site address for this which is http://kairospot.net/forum/. We currently have an 'Other' category of the forum with a forum called Video Games in, and that has a number of sub-forums within it (4 at the moment but it might balloon if we add in more platforms) and I can't decide whether in the long term we should keep the sub-forums or change over to thread prefixes. The activity in the sub-forums isn't very big (although it's got to be considered that so far we're only a month old and it isn't the main focus of the forums) but I worry that if we change to thread prefixes we'll get a more cluttered area but with the benefit of less sub-forums and easier for people to find subjects they might be interested in (unless it's too cluttered).

    I have a few more things I could do with some advice on but those are the two that are bothering me at the moment; so some general advice and maybe some examples on what you've done on your forums would be quite helpful. My main experience with my own (old, now defunct and closed) forum I used to admin was completely different because it was a private forum (although quite large) so we didn't really have a problem with keeping members active or stripping down sub-forums as due to the sites needs we had about 100, so helping to run a (hopefully) larger and more popular public site obviously needs a different approach.
  2. Steve10

    Steve10 Well-Known Member

    The first one is quite an important one for me if anyone has any ideas or experience on managing it?
  3. Divvens

    Divvens Well-Known Member

    Issue 1: With the notices system, you can target notices to certain user-groups and enable dismiss so that they can dismiss the notice once they have read it. It won't feel forced, and will do what you want :) I feel it's better than the usual pm welcome!

    Issue 2: I had a look, what you could do is in the 'Video Game' sub-forums, create just two sub-forums. One for 'consoles' and one for 'hand-held'. In those sub-forums you can add pre-fixes making it less cluttered since there is still a differentiation (e.g, in consoles sub forum, prefixes such as Xbox, PS3 etc). For other (PC) you could just allow posting in the main video game forum where currently the topic "games you are currently playing" is there.
  4. Steve10

    Steve10 Well-Known Member

    Thanks for the advice, for Issue 1 I'm still worried it won't feel personal and that they don't really get a chance to say or introduce themselves but it would certainly be a good way of dealing with things if the problem gets worse, since I made this thread we've had nearly no introduction threads (only 1) posted which I've found weird. If it does go back to the levels we were seeing last week then may be notices will be the way to go.

    For Issue 2 that makes perfect sense to, we could definitely do it that way, seems like the perfect solution. Thanks.
  5. Sadik B

    Sadik B Well-Known Member

    Issue 1 is really simple to solve. Instead of everyone creating their own introduction thread, you create a welcome thread for all new members automatically. Ragtek's new user notification addon allows you to do that. That way every new member get's a thread. The problem however with that would be that your welcome post would be same for everyone.

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