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What are the best ways to increase traffic to a forum?

#1
A useful blog post which may be used to start off the discussion...

7 ways to Increase Traffic to your Forum


The real indicator of a forum’s success is the consistent growth of its membership and activity levels. Many forums reach a certain growth and get stuck there. Forum owners often are clueless on how to get more users to their forum and this leads to a downward slide for the forum. New users need to become part of the forum each month to keep fresh ideas, questions and answers flowing. Otherwise, the existing community members will become bored soon and the activity in the forum will drop considerably. Here are few effective ways in which a forum owner can ensure that new users keep coming to the forum on a regular basis.


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1> Email List

As soon as you start a forum, you must also start two email lists. One for your existing users and one for potential users. You can run contests for your existing forum members, where they refer friends to the forum. You need to send out emails 2 times a month or even 4 times a month to keep your existing users updated and constantly target new users with interesting content.


2> Offer Value for Free

People on the internet love free stuff. This is a great way to reach new users. Create an eBook or a guide around topics in your domain and give it away for free. You can use low competition keywords in the material so that it will also rank highly on search engines. If it is great content, it will get passed around and the word about your forum will reach more people.


3> Blog Commenting

The real forum users are generally good readers. They have a huge appetite for consuming content and also sharing their opinion on it. Forum owners can can target all the popular blogs in their forum’s domain, go there as soon a new blog post is published and drive the discussion. Later they can share their own blog or forum when the opportunity rises.

If you want to read more, reply to this thread to get the link to the full article..
 

Mr Lucky

Well-known member
#2
I agree with 3, but 1 & 2 I'm not so sure about. many people hate email lists unless they signed up to them, AKA spam.

I've notice that free stuff does encourage peope to join, but not necessarily to contribute.