5 Keys to Successful Forum Marketing
Because of the value of forum marketing, many businesses will hire a marketing company to take over this aspect of their business. But many marketing companies use spambots or low-skilled foreign workers to provide content on various forums, which will actually injure the image of your business in the long run! If you are going to tackle forum marketing successfully, you will need to make sure you hire a marketing firm that will take on this part of your campaign correctly – or, better yet, you will need to understand how to conduct a successful forum marketing campaign yourself!
Here are five keys to successful forum marketing:
1. Find the Right Forums
There will be plenty of forums out there that are not at all worth your time or effort! Look for forums that will put your business in the right “community” by searching for popular forums that cover your niche topic. You should aim to join about five to 10 forums initially, and the forums you target should have at least 1000 members and at least 10,000 posts – with at least 15-20 new posts added each day – in order for them to be worth your time. Take your time narrowing down your list of possibilities to the five or 10 you will join, as it will be better to take your time than to commit to something and realize it was a great big waste!
2. Take the Correct Steps Early
You will need to look at forum marketing as a long-term project, because seniority on a forum is a big part of achieving success on that forum. As soon as you have decided which forums you will join, go ahead and join them!
Take the time to read over the user agreement and posting guidelines so that you do not step out of line, and create a profile that will compel others to find out more about you.
A big part of establishing credibility in a forum will be a good profile. Make sure your profile provides a good description of your expertise and experience, and realize that providing a few innocuous bits of personal information can also help to humanize your profile and “break the ice” with others.
And of course, make sure you add your website to your signature so that it will show up every time you post something new!
3. Act Like a New Member
One big mistake a lot of people make is that they enter a new forum and try to take it by storm – failing to realize that those who have been in the forum for a long time have seen plenty of others who have done this before! Forums tend to be tight-knit communities, and they don’t take kindly to a know-it-all newcomer. And even though you might, in fact, know it all, you will chase away your potential for income if you annoy all these old-timers on a forum right when you show up!
Instead of trying to take a forum by storm, take the time to lurk and find out exactly what the flow of the forum is, then slowly work your way into the fold.
4. Make Valuable Contributions
The success of your forum marketing will rest primarily on this key! Don’t give sales pitches; give useful information and share relevant knowledge!
People will be turned-off if they feel you joined the forum in order to sell them something. But if they instead get the sense that you are an expert on a particular topic or in a particular area, they are far more likely to make an effort on their own to learn more about you – and about your business and the product you sell or service you provide.
5. Wait Until You Have Established Yourself Before Making Your Move
And of course, once you are an established, respected, senior member on the site, you will be able to shun a number of these rules – plugging products more freely, and reaping the rewards for all the work you have been putting in all along.